Property management is a growing and crucial field in Canada. Ensuring that property management is done well is critical to keeping residents happy, not to mention in helping property owners improve bottom lines and achieve greater financial success. With home prices escalating across metropolitan areas, trends have shown that increased numbers of people are moving into condominiums (including families), which raises the need for strong property management at these locations.
Many people want to know what is involved in becoming a board member for their condo or homeowners association. It is a role that often goes without much appreciation, but it can greatly influence the quality of life of people in the community.
Condo owners in Ontario prepare yourselves, because change is on its way. Beginning this fall, condo owners and corporations can expect greater confidence and security in their investment when new rules take effect. Currently, condo owners and corporations have to go through legal courts or hire a mediator in order to pursue property issues – from keeping pets in the building to corporate record access. The need for change and improvement with current legislation becomes inevitable with an ever growing number of condo residents, condo units and condo corporations in the province. The current resolution process has become expensive for many residents and overly saturated causing it to be ineffective.
Being a director for a recently registered condominium is hard work, but it can be very rewarding. The first year or so after registration the directors will be very busy and face many challenges.
In addition to their ordinary duties (i.e. to manage the affairs of the condominium and ensure the owners comply with the Act and the condominium’s documents), the directors for a new condominium should pay special attention to a few key areas.
Board of Directors have an obligation to take reasonable steps to ensure that all owners and occupants comply with the Condominium Act, the Declaration and the Corporation’s other governing documents (such as by-laws and rules).
Understanding how condominium insurance coverage is set-up, and how owners and boards can reduce risk, is the best protection in order to keep the corporation’s insurance record healthier. Condominium corporations can also protect themselves by adopting a standard unit by-law and/or an insurance deductible by-law.
Before you choose on renting the unit out yourself, or hiring a professional, such as a real estate agent, ensure the condominium’s rules and regulations will allow for a rental by speaking with the condominium property manager, as some condo’s may restrict the quantity of rentals allowed in a building.
Typically, security is a topic that only gets attention and consideration after an event has taken place. A strong understanding of the potential risks, before they occur is a key element in developing a professional property management system that focusing on prevention over reaction.