Enter data and build your LTMP
Let's presume that you know roughly what your plan will contain and are ready to get started. You might have an old plan to work from and maybe some reports and recommendations from contractors. Maybe there's still some gaps in your knowledge but you've got enough to make a really good start.
So let's get started.
Some data has already been created.
Some data has already been entered into your new body corporate account. When you first created the body corporate some sections were populated with data.
The body corporate number, name and address details have been added along with the number of units etc.
Some default data has been loaded into the plan settings.
A default long-term maintenance fund statement has been loaded.
Let's start editing and adding data.
Go to the dashboard which is the editing page. Starting from the top we'll work down through the 11 panels.
The first section is "Body Corporate Information".
Open this panel and take a look. The information that you included when you created the body corporate account should be displayed and it's unlikely you will need to edit it, but if you do, just go ahead.
However, you will need to upload a photo for the front page and you do that from the 10th panel down called "Images Gallery". If you have one ready you can do this now, otherwise you can come back and do it later. There is a limit on the size of an image you can upload so if you have large files you will need to edit them.
The next section is "Plan Settings".
This has been set up with some default settings that you will need to check and edit.
The plan status should say "Draft". That will be correct.
In the "Approved Date" will state "Plan not yet approved. That will also be correct.
The "Start Date" is something you will most likely need to change. Hopefully you will have decided on your start date and our recommendation is that it should be the start date of your next financial year. See more about dates here. But note that because the plan start date determines what year the job cost and funding tables start, it will save time later if you set the start date now.
10 Years is the only option available at this time for the duration of the plan.
You will be recorded as the Primary Administrator. This can be changed in the users section at the top of the page in the dashboard. However, another user needs to join Plan Heaven and then you will need to join them to the body corporate account before you can hand over the role of Primary Administrator to anyone else.
The Long-Term Maintenance Fund section.
Editing the long-term maintenance fund section is quite simple and you only need to know two things.
Has the body corporate opted out of having a long-term maintenance fund or not?
If yes, at what AGM or EGM was this approved and recorded in the minutes?
If the body corporate has a fund (has not opted out) you don't need to do anything. If the body corporate has opted out, edit this section with the correct data.
If you're not sure whether you should opt out or not not, we have made a few comments about this in the help page relating to compliance.
Now we can set up jobs in "Manage Jobs to be Carried Out".
Arguably this is the most important section because this is where you decide what money will be spent over the period covered by the plan and the values you enter are used in the job cost and funding tables.
The add and edit process in the jobs section is similar to items and variations, with the exception that you need to include an estimated cost in each year the job will be carried out. Not sure what jobs to inlcude? Find out more about jobs here
Note: When you enter values into money fields just enter whole numbers. No dollar sign, no commas and no cents.
The Job's Cost Table.
The jobs cost table is the next section but it is not editable because this table is derived from the jobs you have set up. If you want to change any values in this table you need edit the jobs in the "Manage Jobs to be carried out" section.
Editing the Funding Table.
When you open the funding table panel for the first time, the opening balance will be zero.
If you have not yet added any jobs, every other field will also be zero. However, if you have added jobs and their job cost, the cost of jobs in the funding table will be the total cost of all jobs in each year.
Then, because you have a zero opening balance, the sub total and total columns will be negative. Look closely at those negative numbers because once all of your jobs have been included, any negative balance in year 10 will be the total of all funds your body corporate will need to contribute during the 10 years to pay for the total cost of all jobs.
Now you can edit the table. Click on the edit button and update the opening balance. Return to the panel in the dashboard.
Now you can see the updated final balance and if it is still negative you can divide the negative total in the final year by 10 and you will have what it roughly the annual contribution required from owners to fund the jobs in the plan.
Go back and forth editing until you have got a cashflow that works for your body corporate.
Next we come to "Manage Items Covered in this Plan".
This is the section that is likely to take the most time. Each item of common property, each building element and each item of infrastructure needs to be identified and written up as an item. There is a separate help page on why you should set up items but this section can be completed or updated later if you like because the items in this section are just a record and the only relationship with other tables is with the Age, Life and Cost of Replacement table. There is no relationship between these items and jobs.
However, actually entering the data is straight forward. Click on the "Add an item" button and complete the two empty fields for each item; the name and description. You should find editing or deleting an item also quite intuitive.
Please note that in the current version, the item numbering is manual. So if you want your items to be listed in a particular order, you will need to edit the job numbers manually. Note also that you will experience the same issue when setting up jobs and variations.
Next is "Variations and Exceptions".
You add and edit variations and exceptions the same way you add and edit items. Again you can come back and work on these later because they don't affect anything else in the plan.
Not every body corporate will make use of this section and you can find out more about Variations and Exceptions here.
The Age, Life and Replacement Cost table.
The age, life and cost of replacement tables are a mandatory requirement of the Unit Titles Act and must be provided in order for your LTMP to be compliant. However, it is our view that this table adds little if any value to a well considered LTMP. But go ahead and tidy it up when you get a chance but you should appreciate that each item is driven from the "Manage items" section so we suggest you leave this till last because every time you add an item, another item is added to this table which means you will need to come back and re-edit it.
It isn't necessary to upload photos other than the one on the front of your LTMP but if you want to have photos that support any comments you make in the items or jobs section, you can upload them here and refer to them by name.
Uploading reports and attachments.
As with photos you might have no need to upload any documents but if you have a report with recommendations from a contractor this is the place to store them. You might even want to upload an old expired LTMP created by a contractor so it is available for future reference.
If you have any feedback or questions please use the feedback form.
The Plan Heaven team.
Disclaimer. Plan Heaven is not qualified in law and any comments made on this website are only the opinion of Plan Heaven and should not be regarded as legal advice. Our comments are merely providing some thoughts on how the legislation might be interpreted and how we go about attempting to meet its requirements. You should not rely on this information in isolation and do you own homework and at all times if you wish to be sure of your position relating to legal matters you should seek advice from a suitably qualified lawyer.