Body Corporate or Strata unit

Air Conditioning

29th April 2020

The Body Corporate or a lot owner in a community titles scheme can make improvements to the common property, if they are approved.

There is increasing interest in installing air conditioning in Queensland complexes. As property prices increase, the impetus to increase value by renovating has increased and improving facilities through air conditioning is very popular.


There are many issues that Bodies Corporate have to consider before approving air conditioners. Air conditioners are powerful electrical equipment. Many complexes have inadequate power boards and wiring to cope with air conditioners throughout the complex. A report from an experienced electrical engineer might be necessary as an initial step to determine whether a power board or wiring upgrade might be needed.

Fitting of additional equipment to complexes is likely to change the look of the complex. Visual impact is an important consideration. Strange looking additions to the exterior can reduce the value of units in the whole complex.

Bodies Corporate have to decide what type of system will have the least impact on the uniformity of the overall look of the complex. Many complexes decide that a particular brand and size and colour split-system, with components placed in a specific position on the exterior, is the only one able to be approved by the committee. Professional advice from experienced air conditioning consultants is therefore recommended before deciding this issue.

Complexes that allow parts of air conditioners to be placed on common properties have to take into account the extra wear and tear on common areas, the liability that allowing extra hazards might have on the Body Corporate; the visual impact and loss of amenity to other owners that might result.

Being fair would seem to be very important. If one owner can use part of the roof to place air conditioning equipment on it, it is reasonable for other owners to expect to be able to do the same.

Removing the water that is extracted through the air conditioning process has to be taken into account. All air conditioners have waste water to be drained away, somehow. The complex’s owners have to decide just how they will allow owners to drain this water.

Noise levels are another issue. Air conditioners have to conform to noise restrictions (see Noise elsewhere in this handbook). Naturally neighbours have to be a major consideration. Siting an air conditioner needs very careful consideration of the interests of the neighbours.

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