This month I discuss the topic of who has to pay for a damaged pressure relief valve when it needs to be replaced. I hope that this information is of value to you. Please feel free to pass these articles on to your family and friends.
The Difficult Question of Pressure-Relief Valves
One of the areas that cause a lot of debate, is the matter of pressure relief valves, which are not specifically addressed in the legislation.
As it is usually situated on the outside of the building, in the line of the water pipes servicing the unit, it is easy to assume that it must be part of the common property and, therefore, the responsibility of the body corporate, when it is damaged, leaks and needs replacement.
The proper place to start the reasoning of where the responsibility lies is to consider the function of the pressure relief valve. Google gives a lot of information, but a short version is that it is a safety device designed to protect a pressurized vessel or system during an overpressure event.
So, what is the pressurized vessel in this instance? It is the geyser! The geyser and everything about the geyser is the responsibility of the owner of the section. What is more, it is situated in the water pipes that usually serves only one section, which also is an indication that it belongs to the section itself, and as such is the responsibility of the owner of the section.
The implications of a pressure relief valve that is leaking, is that if there are no individual water meters for sections, all sections in the scheme (complex) are joining in the cost of the wasted water.
If an owner does not repair the damaged valve, a lot of water can be lost. If the valve is not visible from common property, it may not be noticed by trustees or other owners and will contribute to a water bill that is slowly increasing, even more so as other valves start leaking and are not attended to.
The expense for water forms a significant part of the budget and, therefore, the levies.
A possible solution to the problem is to take the strongest possible resolution (decision) by the body corporate (all owners together form the body corporate), but at least a majority vote in value, (the sizes of the participation quotas = the size of the unit as part of the total square meters of all sections together), to have the body corporate pay for the repairs and replacement of pressure relief valves. It must be properly minuted and proper notice must be given of the resolution to be decided on. It should be sufficient if done at an Annual General Meeting, where the proposal is included in the agenda. It is usually easy to get support for such a decision.
The benefit should, over the long run, be more or less equally spread over all sections, as pressure relief valves need to be replaced from time to time. It will prevent a sudden, sizable expense for an owner, and it will also encourage residents to report leaking valves, which is to the benefit of everyone.
It is difficult to budget for it, but an amount can be included under plumbing maintenance.
In my opinion, it may be something to seriously discuss and consider, where such problems are experienced by a body corporate.
First Time Buyers Dos & Don'ts
If you are a first-time homebuyer, you may have a lot to learn. Working from a blank slate, you must build an understanding of the housing market. This transaction will likely become your largest asset ever, so there’s little room for error.
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Create a Home Office You'll Want to Work In
The best way to ensure a successful stay-at-home career is to create the perfect home office. Your home office should feel like home but be separate enough from your home for you to get work done.
Here are the top design tips for creating a home office you will want to work in.
1. Choose the Right Spot
The first step for creating the perfect home office is to find a spot that is conducive to your productivity. You’ll want to choose somewhere with plenty of natural light, as a dingy home office will do little to inspire you.
2. Embrace the Ergonomic
The right level of comfort is key. Invest in an ergonomic office chair – one with plenty of back support and an adjustable seat. You should also opt for an adjustable monitor so that you can set it at the right eye level.
3. Choose a Break-Time Activity
Choose a break-time activity you can do in your office that will allow you to punctuate the working day and take the occasional breather. Regular breaks such as these always aid productivity.
4. Storage is King
Keeping your home office clean and tidy is crucial for getting the most out of the space, so invest in sensible storage from the outset.
5. Set Your Office Hours
Finally, set your office hours. If you end up sneaking into your home office in the middle of the night to catch up on work or taking your meals in there, the lines will quickly become blurred and you will find it difficult to stay productive.