Are Strata Fees Worth It?


Rockhampton’s inner city apartments offer the appeal of secure parking, beautiful views and ‘resort-style’ living. These convenient homes also provide the opportunity to live in a fantastic location and enjoy a stress-free lifestyle. However, some buyers hesitate because they’re concerned about paying monthly strata fees. 


Take a look at what strata fees are and why paying them can actually save you money. 

What are strata fees?


Strata, also known as strata title, is a model of property ownership in Australia that allows people to own a parcel of land or a part of a property within a larger complex or building. 

When you own as part of a strata title, you also share parts of the property and land with other unit or ‘lot’ owners.


Strata fees are there to cover the upkeep and maintenance of these shared facilities. They are used to pay gardeners, painters and property managers, saving you as the owner from having to lift a finger to deal with overgrown grounds or things like rubbish bin removal. 

What do strata fees cover?


Strata fees in Queensland tend to average at around $5,000 to $6,000 per annum, which breaks down to about $96 to $115  per unit, per week, and cover the following:


Gardening in the common areas

Building maintenance, including cleaning and regular upkeep

Window cleaning

Building insurance

Management costs


Swimming pool and gym facility upkeep

Bill payment and reporting

Building insurance

Repairs across features like driveways, garage doors, internal roads and pavings


Think about the daily requirements and costs of owning a home, from calling the plumber to mowing a lawn. The strata committee estimates what this will work out to on average per unit, then an amount is charged monthly to each owner. It’s worth mentioning that lot or unit owners are responsible for paying strata fees, not tenants.


The more desirable and well-maintained a complex is, the higher the strata fees will be. A complex with a gym and pool, for example, will cost more in strata fees than one without. Features like secure undercover parking, shared bbq facilities and an on-site building manager can also add to strata costs. 

How are strata fees calculated?


The managing body of the complex will calculate the amount of money that it is expected to need to maintain the building and grounds for a year, then divide this figure up between lot or unit owners.


In some complexes, the fee will be divided evenly to each owner, while in others, owners may pay greater or lesser fees depending on the size of their individual properties.

Is paying strata fees worth it?


If you want the advantages of living in a well-maintained shared space without the need to take care of everything yourself, paying strata fees is the trade-off, but for good reason.

Consider if you have a farm outside of town but want a city ‘crash pad’. If you choose a strata unit, the building will be maintained without your input. You won’t find yourself having to organise a gardener and there will be someone to take care of problems like a garage door that won’t open, even if you’re not there. 


Then think about the costs of maintaining a free-standing home. If you average out what you spend throughout the course of a year, it will probably add up to more than strata fees would anyway, and you have saved yourself the time of multiple trips to the hardware store. 


With this being said, there are a few things to keep in mind before you buy:


Look into strata fees and consider whether you can afford them on a monthly basis.


Check strata fees against comparable properties in the area to ensure 

that you are not paying more than you should.


Avoid buying in a building with facilities that you will never use like a pool or gym. 


Be aware that owning in a strata building may come with one-off costs if there are major repair works required. This is why it’s a good idea to look at meeting minutes and building reports before you go all in. 


Finally, if you don’t mind paying strata fees but feel as though you would like to have some input into the way the building is run, you can always put your hand up to join the Owners Corporation. This will give you the chance to attend meetings and help to influence spending decisions.

Ready to buy a Rockhampton apartment? We regularly sell homes in sought-after blocks. Contact us to find out more.

Todd Brandon
Operating with unparalleled insight into market trends, sales agent and team leader Todd Brandon services the Southside and Gracemere districts with a level of knowledge only a long-time resident can provide.