Love thy neighbour on Australia Day

Author: Grant Mifsud

It’s important to be considerate when you are celebrating Australia Day, particularly if you are in an apartment complex.

As debate rages over the date of Australia Day, millions of Australians will continue to rejoice, with many parties taking place in strata apartment complexes as the national day falls on a long weekend.

But according to Archers the Strata Professionals partner, Grant Mifsud, some Australia Day festivities can strain relations between neighbouring unit residents.

These incidents have increased in recent years as apartment living becomes more popular, with more families moving to complexes that may have traditionally been home to younger residents.

“While millions of Australians plan to rejoice on January 26, it’s also time to remember to be considerate, particularly if you are celebrating in an apartment complex,” Mr Mifsud said.

“Unfortunately, there will be some parties where guests behave badly and excessive noise and other issues could prompt complaints from neighbouring residents.”

To avoid complaints being made against unit owners or tenants during Australia Day apartment gatherings, Mr Mifsud has these tips:

Dress appropriately

If it’s hot, party goers could be tempted to take celebrations to the complex pool. There is a trend this summer for skimpy swimwear which has caused some problems in apartment complexes particularly as more families move into units instead of houses. This has even sparked some confrontations in recent months. Party guests should be appropriately attired.

Keep the volume down

Whether you are on a balcony, shared facilities or even inside your apartment, loud music and other party noise has the potential to cause tensions. Property bylaws will require any noise able to be heard by the neighbours ending by a certain time, usually before 10pm. If you do adjourn inside to keep partying, avoid any clatter and stomping from dancing or party shenanigans disturbing the occupants of the unit below and neighbouring properties.

Park thoughtfully

Don’t block access for other building occupants and visitors. If there are time limits on visitor parking, remind your visitors when they should move their vehicle. Encourage them to park on the street or in a safe spot nearby – or better still, come to the party via taxi or uber.

Prawn pong

We all love to tuck into the prawns at an Australia Day party but please remember that Queensland’s summer heat does evil things to the scraps. The smell of prawns dumped in garbage bins days before collection can potentially foul the entire unit complex. Wrap scraps and freeze them until the night before your complex’s collection.

Smoke gets in your eyes

Extra care needs to be taken if you are planning a balcony barbecue in your unit. Food can easily catch fire or, worse, gas bottles can explode, potentially causing a major structural blaze. Check gas bottles before using. Unit owners and tenants also need to consider whether smoke from someone lighting up a cigarette on their balcony will bother neighbours.

“These simple suggestions should help keep the peace if there are Australia Day celebrations in apartment buildings,” Mifsud said.


This article provides general information which is current as at the time of production. The information contained in this communication does not constitute advice and should not be relied upon as such as it does not take into account your personal circumstances or needs. Professional advice should be sought prior to any action being taken in reliance on any of the information.