With more people opting to live in high-rise buildings, the number of people wanting to sell their strata apartments but are prevented from doing so due to their neighbour’s failure to pay quit rent have been on the rise also.
Among them was Jennifer Khoo, who had been diligently paying the monthly maintenance fee of RM55 for her three-bedroom apartment in Ampang, Selangor.
Unknown to her over 60 percent of her neighbours did not pay the quit rent for around 15 years, reported The Star.
So, when she attempted to dispose of her apartment, the Selangor Land and Mines Office (PTGS) told her that she could not do so as the building’s joint management body (JMB) owed the land office over RM200,000 in unpaid arrears.
To address this issue, PTGS introduced the parcel rent billing for stratified buildings starting 1 June 2018, to replace the land tax.
Under this scheme, the unit owner has the burden of paying his own quit rent, effectively reducing the burden on the building management to collect land tax from unit owners via maintenance fees.
The scheme is considered a game changer for those occupying at stratified buildings, with Selangor being the first Malaysian state to implement parcel rent.
Despite the seemingly positive outlook for the scheme, it does have problems of its own.
Firstly, parcel rent applies only to those with separate strata titles.
Secondly, it could not address the bigger issue of people not having a sense of responsibility and duty when living in stratified buildings.
This seemingly uncaring attitude is deemed to be the cause of problems for strata buildings such as unpaid maintenance and utilities fees as well as non-functioning lifts.