Decorative building

Buying and selling an apartment

If you are buying or selling an apartment, it's important to be aware of your responsibilities and do your due diligence on combustible cladding.

Buying an apartment

To learn about a prospective apartment and its cladding history, we recommend the following actions:

  1. Read the Section 32 statement
    • The vendor's Section 32 statement has details of current fees, insurance cover, whether the building has any known combustible cladding and any potential or existing legal claims affecting the property.
  2. Read the owners corporation certificate
    • Ask for a new owners corporation certificate (which may incur a fee charged by the owners corporation) or make a time to inspect the owners corporation records, including minutes from previous annual general meetings.
  3. Talk to the owners corporation manager or building manager and ask if:
    • they know whether combustible cladding – such as aluminium composite panels or expanded polystyrene – is used on the building
    • any Building Notices / Orders or Emergency Orders have been issued and whether they have been complied with
    • the insurer has made any enquiries about the building and what the results were
    • they can provide evidence that the building's essential safety measures, such as fire doors, smoke alarms, sprinklers and fire hydrants, are installed and properly maintained.
  4. Contact your local council
    • Your local council's planning department or Municipal Building Surveyor will be able to tell you if they are aware of any cladding or fire safety issues on the building.

Selling an apartment

When it comes to selling your apartment, you should be aware of your legal responsibilities in disclosing information about combustible cladding.

  1. Section 32 statements
    • As an owner, you are required to disclose if your apartment or unit is in a building that contains combustible cladding, or if your building has been issued with a Building Notice, Building Order, Building Order – Minor Work, Emergency Order or any other enforcement.
    • A Section 32 statement is a legal document which must be accurate and complete. It is an offence for a vendor to knowingly or recklessly provide false or incomplete information or fail to provide a Section 32 statement upon request.
  2. Owners corporation certificate
    • An owners corporation certificate is a legal document which includes details about fees, repairs, notices or orders served on the owners, insurance cover, liabilities, contracts, leases and more.
    • Owners corporations must legally provide an owners corporation certificate to any person upon request.

More information

For more information about owners corporation certificates, Section 32 statements and owner's rights and responsibilities visit Consumer website.

You can also review ten steps you can take prior to purchasing an apartment in Victoria. (PDF, 754.3 KB)