Lawyers on disposal of common property

The facade of Leonie Towers.
The facade of Leonie Towers. ST PHOTO: ONG WEE JIN

Some lawyers say that the law should be changed to allow a condominium management corporation (MC) to dispose of common property, so long as the majority of residents agree.

Said lawyer Amolat Singh of Amolat & Partners: "It would be paradoxical that a unanimous decision should be required to dispose part of the common property when a unanimous decision is not even required for the whole condo to be sold en bloc."

For a property to be sold en bloc, the consent of at least 80 per cent of the owners must be obtained before a sale tender can be called.

Mr Singh added: "Further, if the law is not changed, then one could have a situation, say, of a refrigerator or even a table-tennis table that is no longer being used but cannot be disposed of without a unanimous decision."

A lawyer who has over 20 years of experience dealing with management corporation strata title issues said the ruling was "impractical and unreasonable".

The lawyer, who declined to be named, said the MC has the right to dispose of damaged or unused property. To check with the unit owners for such decisions would be "unmanageable", he added.

He suggested that the MC of Leonie Towers could turn off the central air-con system and get those who want to use it to pay for the repair costs.

Owners who are unhappy with the MC's decisions can choose not to vote in the same committee members in future, he added.

But Mr Nicholas Aw of Clifford Law said he agreed with the Strata Titles Board's decision.

"We are talking about common property, that is, every subsidiary proprietor has a say in what happens to it," he said.

Melissa Lin

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on March 19, 2017, with the headline 'Lawyers on disposal of common property'. Print Edition | Subscribe