This is a cross post by Malcom McCracken at Better things are possible. It was from between when National signalled their change in housing policy but before they announced it but highlights why the Medium Density Residential Standards are important.

Yesterday, the leader of the National Party, Christopher Luxon, signalled that the National Party will seek to change the bipartisan housing policy the Medium Density Residential Standards (MDRS) saying “I think we’ve got the MDRS wrong.” This was an interesting comment, particularly as the MDRS only came into effect in August 2022, so will have delivered limited houses so far, making evaluation difficult.

We will have to wait a few weeks to see the detail of National’s proposed changes. In the meantime, it is key to remember why enabling urban intensification is critical to meeting our goals and how reverting to largely greenfield growth will not achieve the outcomes we want, nor is something we can likely afford.

All new homes in our cities create the need for new infrastructure. However, the challenge greenfield development comes up against is higher costs per unit for the supporting infrastructure, when compared to urban intensification. Building within the existing urban area utilises existing capacity and can deliver more efficient services like public transport and infrastructure, even if some upgrades are required.

The nature of greenfield areas, is they are some of the lowest-demand places to build, due to lack of proximity to jobs, education and amenities. This equates to lower densities meaning the high infrastructure costs to connect new suburbs are split across a low number of dwellings.

I wrote about the cost of infrastructure in Drury earlier this year. Where Auckland Council planning to increase the required development contribution, per household equivalent unit, from $22,564 to $83,251. However, this will still only cover 49% of the costs of supporting infrastructure to support the new neighbourhoods. This is also before including the cost of more major Central Government investments like electrification of the rail line to Pukekohe and new stations in Drury to support this growth.

Urban intensification also creates demand for upgraded infrastructure but typically at a lower cost per unit, while supporting renewal of ageing infrastructure that we would need to replace at some point anyway. These costs can be spread across more units, through the increased density, to deliver a lower cost per unit and more affordable growth. Urban intensification can also contribute to fixing many of the other challenges our cities face with emissions from transport, struggling town centres and low council rates bases spread across wide urban areas.

This is why we must enable widespread urban intensification to ensure the market can function efficiently and deliver new homes within the existing urban area at a lower cost. While there is room for improvement, the Medium Density Standards are mostly positive and important to improving housing supply and affordability.

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  1. “Where Auckland Council planning to increase the required development contribution, per household equivalent unit, from $22,564 to $83,251. However, this will still only cover 49% of the costs of supporting infrastructure to support the new neighbourhoods.”

    Given the massive subsidies to greenfield development (& also vehicle users) is it any wonder our cities sprawl & we end up with planning documents as high as the skytower trying to regulate them.

    In the argument about density the issue of the subsidies is not being talked about by anyone directly & it is the root cause of the issue.

    Quite simply the purchasers (i.e. the users) of greenfields housing should be paying 100% of the marginal infrastructure costs not 49% through targeted rates.

    Remove the density limitations in all locations (& limit development by NPS’s on sunlight, wind, smell, safe system road access, justified urban design elements etc etc) & make the purchasers pay the full marginal costs. This will highly bias development towards infill where marginal infrastructure costs will be lower & thus purchase costs also lower.

    Remove/reduce road user subsidies (over time) as well and infill development along Rapid Transit corridors will also be favoured.

    1. Ironically, this should probably be ACT party policy, it would be very free market libertarian to do a user pays, let the market decide where to build approach.

      1. If only we had a free-market party, ACT is just a keep the rich rich club with side lashings of viciousness to keep the poor poor and racism for good measure, not a coherent ideas based political party.

        1. Yes, ACT is just all over the place, really distorting our electoral system. I wish they would die as a party, waste of tax payers money. We could off-set them slightly if we had lower MMP 5% threshold but that would probably also bring in other issues.

        2. I am no fan of ACT and I certainly won’t be voting for them, but the only openly racist political parties in NZ are The Greens and Te Pati Māori.

      2. I’m not calling for a “free for all” market, and I completely oppose deregulated markets as much as I do over-regulated ones.

        Proper NPS and National Environmental Standards would provide consistent and strong national regulation. (rather than plans stacked as high as the skytower and completely inadequate s32 reporting)

        It’s very clear when you follow the money that the current policies dont work as the financial incentives are completely at odds with what we know are good integrated land use/transport planning outcomes.

        We need to reduce/remove the subsidies to help us get there.

    2. “Given the massive subsidies to greenfield development…”. Perhaps we should add up the massive subsidies required for brownfields development. The enormous sums of public money spent in the CBD to separate the sewers and storm water, the cost of CRL, the cost of major sewer projects to get crap to the treatments plants, none of which are anywhere near the CBD, the cost of bulk water mains from the periphery of Auckland into the centre, the environmental cost of not treating stormwater in the older parts of the city compared to the sums spent in the newer parts. Maybe we should also add a cost for the flooding risk and volcanic risk of the central parts. If we are talking about subsidies then we should look at all of them.

      1. City centre separation of sewers and storm water is required with or without intensification.
        The CRL is required with or without intensification. Indeed, travel distances resulting from sprawl puts more pressure on the rail system to perform.
        Treatment plants can be much closer to residents, meaning shorter sewers, if sprawl doesn’t create a large distance between them.
        Bulk water mains are shorter and cheaper if the area of built environment is as small as possible.
        Treating stormwater in the older parts of the city would’ve been happening as part of the natural upgrade as the city grew upwards, if money hadn’t been wasted on building more infrastructure to sprawl instead.
        Each roof that can cover 6 residences instead of one, and each apartment that doesn’t need its own long separate driveway and parking spaces, reduces the volume of runoff, and increases the area for proper rain gardens – which you’ve been mocking for years.
        As for volcanic risk… sigh. A dense city has a lower car ownership rate. In an emergency, the fewer private vehicles clogging up the routes out, the better. Space efficient transport – rail, bus, bike – is the only way to move populations quickly.

        Thanks for the opportunity, Patsy.

        1. Ha. That is funny. Try getting out of Auckland when the pyroclastic cloud has passed over the CBD. Trains and buses wont be working.

          Nice job on the costs by the way. You could work at AT. Just assume all of your costs are in the Do Minimum and the scheme suddenly looks great.

        2. miffy, it’s totally valid for you to describe how it’s cheaper for a developer to build in sprawl or how there are geographic inequities as a result of how the SuperCity was formed, and to be cynical about some of the mad decisions and double standards.

          None of that supports an argument that sprawl is somehow cheaper. None of your arguments overturn the simple truth that the overall effect of adding more infrastructure via sprawl instead of spending the money on upgrading the existing infrastructure for intensification or putting the money into other amenities, the burden of maintenance is larger, the operation costs are larger, the resource use is larger, the distances between people and between infrastructure plants is larger. Everything costs more.

          As for your volcano argument: I think the assumption is we’d get warning and evacuate before the main event. (Mind you, we could have a good chuckle together if you’d heard their discussion about planning for evacuations of the city on Tuesday. Will they be presented with good expert-led advice? Will they do their due diligence on it?)

          But in any case, your idea is nuts that the urban form of the city should be ever-increasing sprawl, increasing car dependence, physical inactivity, isolation, air pollution, transport system costs and climate change, in order to minimise the risks from future volcanic activity.

        3. That used to be true Heidi. Intensification made sense prior to law and order becoming the norm. It was cheaper to intensify a town or city within a fortress wall than to try and build a larger wall you then had to defend. But since mindless violence has largely been reduced it is now far cheaper to build out rather than build a house on top of someone else’s house. The only impediment to sprawl is rules. Rules thought up by people who think they know better than everyone else. Remove the rules and a few people would buy an apartment, but most would choose a bigger home somewhere else.

        4. Thanks for pointing out “…cheaper to intensify a town or city within a fortress wall than to try and build a larger wall…” It’s strange how you’ve turned that into an argument as pro sprawl though because surely it applies to any city service:

          – …cheaper to intensify a town or city with a central wastewater system than to try and build a large spread out one…
          – …cheaper to intensify a town or city with a centralised transport system rather than to try and build a massive sprawling expensive complex of roads that would cost much more to maintain and provide terrible options…
          – …cheaper to intensify a town or city with [INDICATE INFRASTRUCTURE SERVICE OF YOUR CHOICE HERE ____________] than to try and build a larger [ABOVE MENTIONED INFRASTRUCTURE SERVICE ____________] …

          Cities were always compact with or without walls before the industrial revolution because they didn’t have trains or cars. The rules against having a massive spread out city aren’t just thought up by people who think they know better but are in fact natural rules which we are overriding with our car culture and would re-discover really quickly if we had an energy crisis.

          I choose to live in an apartment in an urban centre when I could afford a bigger house elsewhere because I like the social aspects, ease of getting around, and think it’s ridiculous to depend on having a car to get to a bigger house.

          Oh and according to the opposition parties that are campaigning for more sprawl, law and order isn’t working and crime is out of control, so maybe we should build more walls?

      2. Dense development requires less square metres of asphalt, less linear metres of pipes, wires, and fibres, less communication base stations, and less paved or built over area, per inhabitant.
        And that is not accounting for the additional areas of paved roads, and destination carpark provision that sprawl requires in destination locations.
        Commercial activity in our CBD is considerably diluted by the spacial demands of providing roadways and storage for the SOV’s on their 5 day a week pilgrimages to highly favoured employment locations.

  2. To quote Spock – the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few. Much more people need homes (be it townhouses, apartments or standalone houses) than there are people who may “suffer” because there is a few more neighbours on the street.

    1. You’re going boldly, where none have gone before…. But it is a logical answer indeed. Emotions should not enter into it. The needs of the homeless surely outweigh the accrued benefits of the previously housed.

  3. I still can’t believe that in 2023 we are still having to have this discussion, still simply explain the benefits and not to just to every day people who most likely understand it, but that one of our main political parties believes that out not up is the best approach because we have ‘lots of land in New Zealand’…its sad and embarassing, and once again proves to me why democracy in its current form has failed.

  4. Important to remember that even those higher infrastructure costs for Greenfields are still only direct development costs, covers none of the ongoing and forever operating and social costs.

    Every time we spread the city out further we are committing to spend more on schools, fire brigades, policing, and other social service, plus of course more tarmac to maintain and more driving costs that are socialised onto us all. Longer roads out, but then also wider and more damaged and clogged roads in the existing urban area.

    Sprawl is literally unsustainable, both financially and environmentally. both burdens fall hardest on existing citizens, most directly through ever increasing rates delivering ever decreasing quality of life and assets.

    Building up not out is just a version of increasing efficiency, of acting more frugally; no wonder the Dutch lead on it, and the Americans the opposite.

    1. I would suggest that the commitment is rather to spend less on schools, fire brigades, policing and other social service because the cost of tarmac and rising vkt just takes that budget.

  5. Apartments have a poor reputation with many people but increasing numbers are now living in apartments. Those 5 storey retirement homes are really fancy apartments and retired people are moving into them at increasing rates. They are spacious and with good outlook. They are often near to amenities and people enjoy the benefits of the company of others and nearby suburbs and culture.
    I know many people who live in the city in an apartment who seem to be quite active and often don’t spend too much time and money on cars.
    It would be interesting to do a survey and find out what percentage of people who have moved to any new intensified 3×3 storey houses in the Onehunga, a 10 storey block at Avondale or the CBD are happy with their decision. Are they saving on heating and transport costs, having good vibes with the neighbours and enjoying the modern architecture?

    1. I lived in apartments overseas for over 20yrs. I started in a 2bdr share, went to a few 1bdrs, back to a 3bdr share, then a 3bdr I bought, which eventually I shared with my growing family before finally, a 4dr duplex apartment for us all. We are moving to a stand alone house but in 15yrs time when the kids leave, it will be back to an apartment, without question.

      All along there was options for different stages of life, and quality. Good overseas condos have pools, gyms, tennis courts, space to walk around, community events and my kids always had others to play with.

      It’s not for everyone, but we really are missing out here on quality options. Every expat that I spoke to loved apartment living with their families and all the facilities, at least for that time of their lives.

      And at the very least, a well located 1bdr apartment with good transport options could be the first step of every young adult getting a roof over their head that they own. Save on the rental fees, upgrade to a new place (house, if you wish), keep the old one for income and adding to the rental stock

      1. The Larger the apartment building is, the more risk that it will start to be a slum apartment after about a quarter of a century.
        My thinking is an apartment should ideally be between 3 to 5 story, and have a limit to the number of apartments, there should be a mix of 1 to 3 bedroom apartments and the ground floor should have a high ceiling to allow change of use (retail/residential) over the lifetime of the building. Lastly it is important that parts of the ground floor are occupied 24 hours per day.

        1. My last apartment block overseas was 30 stories (15 levels of duplexes) and about 450 units. And it was along way from a slum. It was mainly middle class and up. People were clamouring to buy into it.

          That is not to say that your idea for apartments don’t have their place and would should be more prevalent.

        2. Peter H – “more risk that it will start to be a slum apartment after about a quarter of a century” – this may or may not be true. What proof do you have? Any written sources we could follow up on? Serious question !

        3. Small blocks can be slums just as much as tall ones, and vice-versa. Its really all about the type of dwellings you are building and the price point. Just look at all the new skyscrapers going up with penthouses worth 10s of millions.

          But your point on 3-5 storey walk-ups is a valid one. Our suburbs should be littered with these. Go to some of the flashest suburbs in Sydney and you will see 3 storey apartments probably 70yrs old built amongst the new and old mansions. There is nothing remotely special (character!) about our fringe CBD suburbs that means they should not be built there.

        4. There is zero evidence. Its purely vibes from the failed large housing projects in the US / UK, which happened to be high rises as the style of the time, and the political excuses that were made. In reality, you put a lot of low income people together, you give them a shitty economy and job market in declining areas / cities, poor social safety net, systematically underspend on maintenance of the building and area, you get undesirable housing conditions.

          Look to any of large overseas city and you’ll see the majority of large apartment towers are long term successes.

      2. Agreed In NZ william built a tiny lot units with no carpark. I wonder what is the quality of life on those buyers.

        This remind me of the leaky 2000s city apartments. It will create a bad reputation for apartments.

        1. ‘Tiny lots units with no car parking’ is not a problem
          There is nothing unhealthy about a 70-210sq m lot with a single dwelling and no car parking, if a quarter of the lot is unbuilt on and it has good access to sunlight.
          Apartment BAD reputation comes from large decade old apartments which is why we have modern zoning.

        2. I lived in Sydney, Shanghai and Singapore over about 10yrs with no carpark, or car. My quality of life was fantastic.

        3. I live in a 1 bedroom Williams townhouse with no carpark. Its great. All electric, max $150 power bill in winter. Heat pump / ac on 24/7, perfectly 21 degrees in winter, 19 degrees in summer, ~50% humidity. Never hear the neighbours. No mold, no sun, no other flatmates, no worries.
          This is a vastly better quality of life than any other option I would have. Most houses in Auckland, let alone in the south are impossible to keep at appropriate temps 24/7, they’re wooden tents. They’re mostly built for nuclear families, despite that not being how a large portion of the population live.

          The level of stockholm syndrome that NZers have for moldy, impossible to condition houses but a big lawn they never use and 2 carparks because they live too far from their job to bike or walk, is insane. Let people build, finance, and rent what they like.

          I wouldn’t buy this place I live, and have actually purchased a better townhouse to move into soon. But the quality of life is just fine thanks.

          And of all the townhouse developers, I think williams will age ok. The issues with the leaky homes crisis have been pretty well resolved with better building science, and changing architectural styles. Overhangs are back in, air gaps between the cladding building wrap are ubiquitous, simple roofs are standard again, flashings are mandatory. They’re just simple rectangular buildings, which are far less risky than the pseudo fancy mcmansion styles of the early 2000s.

    2. The venn diagram of ‘I have never lived in an apartment but I hate them’ and ‘I have never tried an electric bike but I hate them’ would be a circle.

    3. Isn’t it ironic that many of the voters who seem to be voting for “car world” and no intensity are also moving into retirement villages which are walkable, have a thriving social centre and don’t need car dependency because the quality of life is so much better? Funnily enough my aging relatives in Europe already live in these, they are just called “villages” or “towns” and younger people live in them too. They also don’t have to pay property manager/developers exorbitant fees for the privilege.

  6. There also needs to be a close look at how changes in social housing have been creating structural racism, with or without intention.

    Take a look at social housing provision per head of population in the local boards and then consider the economic and ethnic profiles.

    There are four local boards where social housing capacity is at 1 bedroom per 10 head of population or higher, right up to 1 in 5. Basically the southwest from Mount Roskill on down.

    There are four where it is under 1 bed per 50 head. Basically the east side from Takapuna/Devonport on down, plus Franklin.

    There are four where it is under 1 per 300 head, the northern exurbs and islands.

    You can’t tell me that people wouldn’t like to be housed near the eastern beaches or the city centre.

    I’d be interested to see the measure of correlation between change in social housing availability and ethnicity in the boards over the last 30 years or so. You don’t need walls to create green zones and red zones, just bureaucracy and patience.

  7. Social housing has stayed on the dwindling landholding of Kainga Ora. The policy set under John Key of selling KO land to fund intensified social housing (net increase in Social housing bedrooms but reduction in contiguous landholding) means that this is the last dip into state-held estate planning. It is already hindered by the fragmentation through right-to-buy privatization of former State houses.
    True development agency policy of voluntary/compulsory purchase would enable the accumulation of lots to enable good redevelopment, mostly from willing sellers able to capitalise their houses (often aging rentals).

      1. Kainga Ora also spent over $70million on rural land in Tauranga to attempt to build density on the fringes of a city (just like Auckland is currently doing out south and in the north west).

        Imagine what $70m would do in the existing urban area? Housing for how many people?

    1. The implications of National’s about-face on intensification mean more ex-urban development north-west of Auckland and in the Pukekohe-Hamilton corridor.
      Small urban development agencies in Tuakau, Pokeno and Huntly could buy blocks in these towns to build units up to two stories and close to the railway stations.
      Done on a rent-to-buy basis the subsequent income is used to develop new housing. The tennants also get a discount to use Te Huia in Huntly and buses in the other towns – until they get railway stations.
      The Sleepyhead factory near Huntly is a sign of what’s to come for many companies- cheaper and more accessible sites. They will want workers.
      The road and rail corridor Otahuhu to Hamilton seems set to be the country’s premier industrial development corridor.

  8. There’s way more than enough development potential in high density redevelopment in walkable catchments of train stations etc, provided that the consenting regime was significantly standardised and streamlined.
    I agree MDRS is better than sprawl but it’s still not great in terms of transport and emissions goals.
    3, 2, 1 and ad hominen abuse…

    1. Streamlining welcomed… Question, though.

      Imagine there was no sprawl allowed; and greenfields was over. In that scenario, would the existing regulations have enough capacity for the demand?

    2. You’re coming around Zen Man.

      Yes, we need to improve that side of consenting a lot! This is the way to encourage as much of the development to be around rail / buses as possible without driving up costs for housing overall. This is the constructive kind of stuff we need to spend our time advocating for.

      MDRS is a useful backup to avoid worse things if we fail.

  9. Ideally, we should all live in low rise apartment blocks, as opposed to some of the “shoe boxed” towers prevalent in the CBD. The suburban idea is transplanted from the USA and surprisingly it has brought a few tornadoes with it. Which means the mother earth is rather more vigilant than most of the laggards in climate change reaction. The water issue is nationwide, and not anybody living’s fault, but simply useless councils with no interest other than their own, and those of those they “represent” (protect). How did Auckland become a Supercity without a proper plan for creating a super city? It is a CBD surrounded by suburbia, which is better than any US model, if only because we as a country do not have a desert to expand into, as Australia cannot. A truly Greater Auckland would need to resemble the great towns of Europe, as two million is only big town size in the rest of the world. The CRL is vital, and fast tracking apartment builds in the zones of train stations would be the most logical accompanying project, but they need to be apartment blocks, not townhouses. These will add to the cityscape and we could create more art than the current restrictions that street artists have along the rail line. East Berlin is what our current rail system reminds me of, with it’s extensive “graffiti” and other art and handwriting practice providing a break from the incredible landscapes that we encounter on suburban train rides. And yes another flaky statement from an unpopular leader is probably another uneducated move by the National Party. Very sad for those of us who know how real cities operate, imperfectly but certainly with a little more action and a little less partisan stonewalling (San Francisco reference intended)!

    1. “Ideally, we should all live in low rise apartment blocks, as opposed to some of the “shoe boxed” towers prevalent in the CBD.”

      Genuine question – how big are the “shoeboxes”? I lived in an apartment in Sydney and it was probably 50sqm. And it was perfect for a young single guy at the time.

      One thing I also saw in Sydney was conversion of old office blocks into high end apartments. There was one near the harbour bridge and it had a few ex PMs living there. Very flash. I think it was originally an IBM HQ.

      1. Incidentally, we shouldn’t really knock the shoebox towers in the CBD. They add a lot of people, usually young (students) and that leads to vibrancy, cafes, restaurants, etc.

        1. Yeah. That’s just what a ton of people want at that stage in life. Super easy transport, access to the largest job and transport markets in the country. And to live in a place that’s not going to knock years off their life / get them sick while they do it.

        2. They suit older people too, for many reasons. The size, cost, low maintenance requirements and closeness to work and fun is ideal for many people.

          My Mum’s in a 37 square metre apartment in town, and is very happy with it.

        3. That’s good to hear Heidi. I can imagine it would be a good choice for a lot of people in that age group too.

  10. Nats are just playing to their voters… mostly landowners etc. The silly thing is that they needn’t do this as it was a bipartisan policy so they could always blame Labour when they felt like it.
    I’m not really sure quite what is going wrong in NZ politics because Labour seems to fail to deliver on its policies while National can’t come up with coherent policies and flip flops all over the place.

  11. After many years we don’t have productive soils protected, not even the most fertile frost free. And we still have a housing crisis, under paid teachers, no LRT, no new hospitals, etc. Crime, hospital wait times, education, debt, inflation, interest rates, and the amount of coal we’re burning are much worse than just 6 years ago.
    So its no great surprise we’re still having this discussion.
    Even what is being talked about for density in Auckland is a halfway measure, much of it inappropriate and likely to be wrong size in just a few decades. The areas around all train stations and transport hubs should have zoning for CBD or singapore size apartment buildings, regardless of nimby crys of losing views, green leafy or heritage looks, changes in demographics, parking or whatever complaint.
    Legislate, bring it on and do it. Please.

    1. “Protecting” soils from that land being made more useful as housing is just as dumb as “protecting” jobs by having TV’s or cars be assembled in NZ. All else being equal, it just shifts costs, in this case onto housing in return for a much smaller amount off food.

      Coal is a small fraction of the electricity mix, it currently depends entirely on no rainfall. With the rapid buildout of new renewable generation (200mw of geothermal, 1000s of mw of wind and solar in various stages of planning, lots being built) it will be making up a smaller and smaller portion. Right now coal use is at a 32 year low.,three%20months%20of%20the%20year.

      Housing is getting better in Auckland:

      Labour have failed with lots of stuff. Lots of things are getting better though. Don’t buy the doomerism

  12. I just wish something could be done about many of the poor quality medium density housing going in.
    Is there a design guideline that these small devalopers could follow?
    I’m all for medium and high density, I love what’s happened in hobsonville point but my area gets all the crap mis match houses.

    1. Sure thing John, many design guidelines are available.
      Best of all is my book, Medium, a technical design guide for creating better medium density housing in Aotearoa New Zealand, (Marriage, 2022), published by EBOSS.
      But there is also:
      Auckland Design Manual
      Good Solutions Guide for Apartments by Sills van Bohemon Architects, 2005
      London Design Guide at
      New York Design Guidelines at
      Victoria Better Apartment Design Standards
      And for small developers, especially, there is the Ministry for Environment National medium density design guide, at

  13. The elephant in the room of apartments is the Body Corp, or more specifically the lack of transparency and regulation around them. I’ve had experience of two body corps. One was OK, well run with conscientious committee members. The second was a nightmare. It was basically an expensive cartel with block absentee voting and conflicts of interest everywhere (the cleaner was the body corp managers brother, etc etc). Meetings were often conducted with a second shadow meeting at the same time going on in Chinese on Whatsapp. We learnt to keep our head down and just pay the bloated costs.

    As long as body corp rules are slack and open to abuse prospective apartment owners will feel vulnerable to sharp practice and hesitant to buy to own. it is an area crying out for stronger regulation and enforcement.

    1. Yes; what is the law change we need, do you think? This is important. I’ve seen body corporates that function really efficiently. I’ve also come across a body corp that overtly keeps things out of the minutes in order to keep the apartment values high – because the committee has investors who own several Air BnB apartments in the complex. Those doing due diligence before buying don’t get to understand what the issues are.

      1. How would I change things? First, councils have to have auditors who check for conflicts of interest & that the body corporate is following all relevant regulations. Second, the building manager should be forbidden from also being on the body corporate committee – it is an obvious conflict of interest. Third, only one proxy vote per meeting attendee should be allowed. Fourth, developers should be required to provide for a “democracy space” in all apartment buildings over a certain size where resident meetings may be held.

        1. Thanks. Another question. I’ve actually been asked this evening to give comment on a new body corporate committee structure for a complex with about 60 apartments. Any advice? I’m wondering if there’s a sweet spot for the number of sub-committees…?

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