Strata managers and lawyers will tell you building defects have been a consistent issue in the apartment sector for many years. The problem however has not been highlighted to the extent it has recently in the media. Those images we’ve seen of residents carting suitcases down the footpath as they are forced out of their homes will likely have a negative impact on the marketability of new apartment projects.
I feel for the owners and residents of projects like Opal Tower, Mascot Towers and the recent ones in Erskineville and the Melbourne CBD. They spent a lot of money on these apartments and are now faced with huge rectification and/or relocation bills.
The reputational damage these defect issues will have on the building’s brand and the builders and developers that built or sold them will likely be felt for years to come. A recent article in the Sydney Morning Herald suggested buyers will start to look towards the older strata apartments built between the 1960’s and 1990’s as opposed to new or off-the-plan projects. I tend to agree. We’ve all seen the classic red or orange brick strata buildings throughout suburbs like Randwick and Bondi, but suddenly these simple 2-3 storey walk-ups with limited facilities look like a simple, attractive buy.