Saturday, August 1, 2009

Can residents hang laundry in public view?

IT'S one of the biggest bones of contention.
To start with, the law forbids it.

The Building Maintenance and Strata Management Act states that a homeowner 'shall not, except with the prior written approval of the management corporation, hang any washing, towel, bedding, clothing or other article on any part of the parcel in such a way as to be visible from outside the subdivided building, other than at areas designated for the purpose and there only for a reasonable period'.

The idea behind this is that hanging laundry is unsightly and could devalue a building.

However, this law can be very hard to enforce. The size of condo units is shrinking, leaving householders little alternative when designated yards for drying laundry may not provide enough space.

Different councils adopt different tactics. Some name and shame recalcitrant owners while others impose fines. Some try to compromise by getting residents to set their laundry racks further away from windows. Others just give up trying to enforce the rules for the sake of keeping the peace.

Residents wanting to keep within the letter of the law sometimes opt for electric dryers, or resort to drying their laundry in an air-conditioned room overnight.

Source: Straits Times, 1 Aug 2009

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