COVID UPDATE – November 2020

Please read below the latest changes to Victoria’s Stage 3 COVID restrictions and how this affects those living in strata title buildings:

As Victorians continue to live and work under Stage 3 Restrictions, there have been several recent changes to the real estate sector and multi-dwelling properties.

As Victorians can now access local businesses and recreation facilities, the Victorian Government has provided further clarification around multi-dwelling properties and obligations for building operators with regards to communal areas.

In the context of a residential apartment building, the building operator is the Owners Corporation (overseen by the committee of management).

The information released by the Victorian Government addresses the following questions and provides a comprehensive coverage of the responsibilities for Owners Corporations to keep their buildings safe when considering re-opening communal areas.

Do building operators need a COVIDSafe Plan for multi-dwelling properties?
• What steps do building operators need to take in relation to common areas?
• Can I open an indoor gym in a multi-dwelling property, such as apartments?
• Can I open a swimming pool in a multi-dwelling property such as apartments?
• Can construction works be carried out in multi-dwelling properties?

Communal areas in multi-dwelling properties can open, provided building operators take reasonable steps to ensure that all Public Health Directions are complied with. This includes having a COVIDSafe Plan in place.

When considering re-opening any communal area, building operators should consider the following questions:

• Limit the number of people in communal areas by using signage that indicates the density limit and maximum number permitted in the area at one time.
• Implement an environmental cleaning schedule to ensure routine cleaning and disinfection of high-touch surfaces and communal areas.
• Provide visible cleaning logs in all relevant shared workplaces and publicly accessible areas showing dates, times and frequency with which they have been cleaned.
• Establish hygiene stations with hand sanitiser, at building entrance points and in communal areas to encourage hand hygiene of residents and staff.

Indoor sport and recreation facilities operators (including residential property managers), such as pools & gyms must have a COVID Marshal onsite during the operating hours of the facility to ensure that Public Health Directions are followed and physical distancing is observed.

For more information, visit: COVID Marshals

A comprehensive list of Government Updates can also be found here.

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