We get many inquiries for solar from families or businesses who are in Strata’s. Here is our guide:
We see 3 options for getting solar if you are in a strata:
- Get solar for yourself.
- Help all tenants/owners get their own solar together
- Get a shared solar system
Option 1 – Get Solar for yourself
This is the quickest and “easiest” way. To do this you need
to get approval from your strata to install solar on common property. You will
also need a design and quote from a solar company to show how much space you
need. To do that, click on this link to our Bulk Buy page and register via the
Registration Tab/Link: http://sunnyshire.org.au/bulk-buy-3-prices-and-faq/
To get approval from strata, you need a bi-law at your next
strata meeting. Luckily I asked my strata manager a few years ago and they had
done it before, and send me a bi-law! It
is at the bottom of this post.
Option 2 – Get solar together
You could ask the other tenants and owners if they would
like to do this together. It sounds like it would save time in getting quotes
and doing it in one installation, but in reality it can become like herding
You would need a design and quote from a local solar company
(click above link and register). You may decide that you each get equal access
to roof space and equal sizes, or that may depend on your budgets. Then each
solar system module has its own inverter, and that is wired down to each of
your switch boards separately. I don’t know of an example of this in the real
world but does not seem impossible.
Option 3 – Shared Solar
Now for some world leading innovation. A challenge with
solar is you don’t always use power when the solar system is generating during
the daytime, so excess goes to the grid. Solar is so cheap and Feed-in-Tariffs
are good, so this is still OK for solar families. Many Sunny Shire families get
paid each quarter by their electricity customers as their export credits far
exceed their usage costs! But still, there are benefits to using solar directly
rather than feeding into the grid.
So, imagine you could have a shared solar on the roof, and
it would direct the power to whoever in your building is using the power first,
to reduce the cost of usage of 30 c/kWh rather than get feed in tariffs of 10
c/kWh? And you all benefited from this?
Well, a Melbourne Start Up, Allume Energy has created a
system that does exactly this. And our trusted local solar companies are familiar
with it and can quote it for your strata. If you are interested to hear more,
register via our Bulk Buy link above.
But beware, this will take some education and time to get
all your strata members interested and up to speed.
Strata Bi Law
Special By-Law No.X – Solar Power System
In this by-law:
“owner” means the owner for the time being of lot x, and
“solar power system” means a photovoltaic array mounted on the roof, its
batteries, inverter and all cables forming
part of the system.
The owner shall have special privileges in respect of the common property to be
the solar power system for the purpose of installing and keeping it on that
property upon and subject to the conditions set out below.
Installation of the solar power system
solar power system must be installed in a proper and workmanlike manner
utilising only first
quality materials which are good and suitable for the purpose for which they
solar power system must be installed in accordance with the manufacturer’s
holes created or penetrations made in the common property during the
of the solar power system must be adequately sealed and waterproofed.
owner must ensure that the solar power system is installed with due diligence
and within a
reasonable time from the date of commencement.
(e) The owner must ensure that minimum disturbance is caused to the common
and the owners and occupiers of the strata scheme during the installation and
the solar power system.
(f) The solar power system must not have an appearance, when viewed from ground
immediately outside the building and within the boundaries of the strata
detracts from the appearance of the building.
Costs of the
solar power system
(g) The owner must pay all costs associated with the installation of the solar
with all Laws
(h) The owner must comply with all statutes, by-laws, regulations, rules and
other laws for
the time being in force and which are applicable to the solar power system and,
if required, must
obtain the consent of Council to the solar power system.
of the solar power system
(i) After completion the owner must, at the owner’s expense, properly maintain
and keep in
a state of good and serviceable repair the solar power system and any part of
the common property
occupied by the solar power system and, when necessary, renew or replace any
fixtures or fittings
comprised in the solar power system or that common property.
(j) Immediately upon completion of the installation of the solar power system
the owner must
restore all other parts of the common property affected by the installation of
power system as nearly as possible to the state which they were in immediately
prior to the
installation of the solar power system.
(k) The owner must, at the owner’s expense, make good any damage to the common
property caused as a result of the solar power system no matter when such
damage may become
(l) The owners corporation must permit the owner reasonable access through the
property of the strata scheme for herself and her contractors and all their
and machinery for the purpose of installing the solar power system and meeting
imposed on the owner by this by-law.
(m) The owner will indemnify and keep indemnified the owners corporation
actions, proceedings, claims, demands, costs, damages and expenses which may be
by or brought or made against the owners corporation arising out of the solar
power system or the
altered state or use of the common property arising therefrom.
(n) The owner must pay all of the costs of the owners
corporation incurred in connection
with the preparation, passing and registration of this by-law and the owners
may refuse to execute any document relating to the registration of this by-law
time as those costs are paid by the owner.
(o) In the event that electrical power, water or any other service is connected
to the solar
power system and the existing service is separately metered and charged to the
account of the
owner then the new service shall be installed so as to also be separately
charged to the account of the owner.
(p) If the owner is in breach of any condition of this by-law and fails to
rectify that breach
within thirty (30) days of service of a written notice from the owners
rectification of that breach, then the owners corporation may rectify any such
may recover as a debt due from the owner the costs of the rectification
together with the
expenses of the owners corporation incurred in recovering those costs.