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  • Avatar of jlmonksjlmonks
    Member
    @jlmonks
    Post count: 3

    Hi all
    Does anyone know what an average body fee in Melbourne, or more specifically in Maribyrnong would be. Looking at buying first home property to eventually be our first investment property in about 3-4 years time. Body corporate fees are $4096 for a ground level apartment. Building does have lifts but a few costs look a bit high to me

    $20,000 per month for 3 days per week caretaking
    $13,000 per quarter for common area power supply (4 story building, couple of corridors on each level)
    $10,000 per quarter for maintenance of one lift

    What does everything think?

    Avatar of MarJacMarJac
    Member
    @MarJac
    Post count: 71

    Looks more like annual fees to me. How many apartments are in the complex?

    If 3 days a week caretaking is $20,000 per month, I'll do it for $10,000 per month !!
    I assume that this would be for cleaning/vacuuming common areas (Corridors etc) & garden maintenance etc

    Power Bill of $13,000 per quarter sounds ridiculous even annually its a lot even with corridor & outside lighting & lift etc

    Don't really have any idea of lift maintenance but could be $10,000 annually for safety checks etc

    Lift costs should be apportioned accordingly the higher you are the more you pay, ie Level 4 pays more that level 2.
    If you are purchasing a ground floor apartment your contribution to the lift should be minimal, unless there are basement carparks that are serviced by the lift.

    I also note that there is no allowance advised for a 'sinking fund' even though the building may be new there should be a contribution put asisde each year to cover future costs of maintenance (painting etc). I believe this is covered under the new Owners Corporation legislation.

    Also you may wish to factor in a professional Body Corporate / Owners Corporation Managers fees which may be $200-$500
    pa per apartment  

    Avatar of JacMJacM
    Participant
    @JacM
    Post count: 2,249

    Here is what I think:

    In a standalone house, here are some example annual costs:

    $500 insurance (building + contents)
    $900 council rates
    $20 exterior sensor light
    $1000 for a gardener if you cannot be bothered to mow your own lawns

    Total = $2420.

    And that would be for a whole house.

    Yes, $4096 seems extravagant to me and the precise reason I refuse to buy property that involves a body corporate.

    About that electricity bill.  How many light fixtures are we talking??  An electricity bill for a whole house would come in at perhaps $200 per quarter.  So even if you multiply that area/consumption by 5 to try and equate it to the number of lightfittings in your buliding, you only come up to $1000… not $13000.

    What is the "caretaking" covering?  Is it just a gardener?  Or is it a full-time staffperson that is on hand most hours of most days, will receive deliveries for you and so forth?  I doubt it is the latter, and therefore $20k a month is ridiculous.  $20k a month means this caretaker is sitting on a sweet $240k.  Seriously. 

    If the lift is costing $10k a quarter to "maintain", then it is time to retire the lift me thinks.

    JacM | Jacqui Middleton | Property Sourcing Agent
    http://www.tayloredfinancialsolutions.com.au
    Email Me | Phone Me

    Taylored Financial Solutions | Property Sourcing, Mortgage Broking & Property Investment Strategists

    Avatar of JacMJacM
    Participant
    @JacM
    Post count: 2,249

    Perhaps the caretaker is growing marijuana somewhere in the building.  Might explain the ridiculous electricity costs…

    JacM | Jacqui Middleton | Property Sourcing Agent
    http://www.tayloredfinancialsolutions.com.au
    Email Me | Phone Me

    Taylored Financial Solutions | Property Sourcing, Mortgage Broking & Property Investment Strategists

    Avatar of jlmonksjlmonks
    Member
    @jlmonks
    Post count: 3

    Thanks for these comments. These are the prices listed on the section 32 I received. Complete list below

    Common water – $450 quarterly
    Fire Hydrant testing – $1800 bi-annually
    Light testing – $1400 bi-annually
    Fire alarm monitoring – 1400 quarterly
    Power supply common area – $13,000 quarterly
    Lift maintenance – $10,000 quarterly
    Essential services inspection – $992 quarterly
    Garage door maintenance – $860 bi-annual
    Caretaking/maintenance – $20,000 monthly – 3 days per week, no-one on site vacuming corridors, 3-5 small trees out the front
    Lift/alarm monitoring – $1350 monthly
    Maintenance of mechanical services – $720 quarterly

    There are 60 apartments in the block, 1 lift to 4 floors. Building is about 6 years old.

    I was thinking I could do the caretaking on weekends and pay off the mortage in under 2 years. LOL

    Avatar of JacMJacM
    Participant
    @JacM
    Post count: 2,249

    I have not bothered to do much research into apartment buildings because I am soooo not into body corporates.  No matter what, these fees sound out of control ridiculous.

    May I be so rude as to ask what the asking price is for the apartment you are looking at?  If it's worth 2mill, then $4k a year probably doesn't matter.  But I'm guessing it is an apartment in the normal price bracket affordable to most folk… in which case $4k a year is quite breathtaking.  I wouldn't touch it with a barge pole.  If it's $4k now, who knows what ridiculous fee changes this mob will bring in next year??

    JacM | Jacqui Middleton | Property Sourcing Agent
    http://www.tayloredfinancialsolutions.com.au
    Email Me | Phone Me

    Taylored Financial Solutions | Property Sourcing, Mortgage Broking & Property Investment Strategists

    Avatar of JacMJacM
    Participant
    @JacM
    Post count: 2,249

    Is the building insurance part of the $20k?  Even if it is, it is still wayyyyyy to much money.

    JacM | Jacqui Middleton | Property Sourcing Agent
    http://www.tayloredfinancialsolutions.com.au
    Email Me | Phone Me

    Taylored Financial Solutions | Property Sourcing, Mortgage Broking & Property Investment Strategists

    Avatar of jlmonksjlmonks
    Member
    @jlmonks
    Post count: 3

    No figure on the building insurance but I assumed it may be included in the maintenance fees. All the things it covers seems to be line with other apartments we've previuosly looked at. It's definitely not a $2mill apartment. We're just trying to break into the market.

    Avatar of angelinsydneyangelinsydney
    Participant
    @angelinsydney
    Post count: 270

    Hi,

    The newer the building, the higher the costs of quarterly strata.

    There are new buildings in Sydney CBD that charges up to $25,000 a quarter in strata fee.  The building known as the "Toaster" near the Sydney Opera House had one penthouse which was for sale a few years ago, the quarterly strata fee was advertised as "approximately $100,000!!!!"  Imagine how much they're paying now!!!!

    There are suckers born every minute.

    Angel

    Avatar of Jamie MooreJamie Moore
    Participant
    @Jamie-M
    Post count: 4,473

    Yikes – and I was dirty about the $500 per quarter I was forking out for my last PPOR.

    Cheers

    Jamie

    Jamie Moore | Pass Go Home Loans Pty Ltd
    http://www.passgo.com.au
    Email Me | Phone Me

    Mortgage Broker assisting clients Australia wide Email: info@passgo.com.au

    Avatar of xdrewxdrew
    Participant
    @xdrew
    Post count: 456

    I never get too caught up with body corp payments. You either accept it as part of the transaction and value it as part of the ongoing and further expenses, or .. you dont buy. Its all a matter of what you are intending to get for that deal. I have seen body corps that are as low as 800 p/a with basically common area and insurance to maintain .. and .. there are the ones that you pay for luxury.

    When the building at 368 St Kilda Rd first hit the market .. i was seriously considering one of the apartments on the 31st floor and the saleslady went through the pitch as to what the building offered … blah blah. So .. for the security and facilities .. gym .. pool .. sauna … weights room … doorman / concierge .. office facilities .. and reading room … (yes its more than your avg facility) I enquired what the total body corp costs would be. Reply from the lil lady …. oh .. about 7k per million dollar value .. per apartment

    The apartment I was looking at was … 3.2 million … making that a body corp p/a of roughly 21k

    From what i'm aware .. its more now (about 8300 per million per apartment) so as you can see .. if you really want to pay it .. the price is right.

    Avatar of madeinaustralia77madeinaustralia77
    Member
    @madeinaustralia77
    Post count: 9

    Dont do it!!!!

    I have done the same thing. I have a place up in far nth queensland  that I lived in for 2 years and the strata and rates kept on going up… and they even decided to thrown in an extra payment of $500 because they underestimated some painting costs…. You really seem to have no control over it….

    My rates are 2k and my strata is 6k a year now… When I rent my place out for 300 a week  I still have to pay over $200 a week to cover costs. And the place only cost 200k!!

    In saying all this, I am a total novice in the field and I may have just chose the wrong area or timing…. Or I should just be patient!!

    But really take your time and look through all the fine print…

    Good luck

    Avatar of angelinsydneyangelinsydney
    Participant
    @angelinsydney
    Post count: 270

    Hi all,

    This is my own opinion only….based on personal experience.  I will NEVER, EVER buy a unit again.  I live in a 10 bedroom house, with 2 kitchens, 4 toilets and showers and it DOES NOT cost me $6K or $21K to maintain it.

    The day I have this much money to give away, would be the day I can really call myself a millionaire.  For now, I am still a battler so owning a unit is not for me.

    Take care all.

    Angel

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