Purchasing/Living in a Condominium
Who are the People in Your Neighbourhood? The Owners
From the CCI Review 2021/2022-4 June 2022 issue of the CCI London Chapter
The spotlight in condominiums is more often on those who provide goods and services on a property. There is no doubt they are important and we repeatedly thank them for what they provide to our communities. Perhaps not often enough though, we neglect to acknowledge the owners who contribute to the successes that recognize their contributions to this preferred corporation they have invested in to make it home.
Granted, it may take some time for some owners to embrace the condominium lifestyle. A potential buyer has many reasons for gravitating to the condominium lifestyle; however, we are familiar that it is not for everyone no matter their understanding of the lifestyle.
So what does a potential buyer know about condominiums? Much like many topics of discussion out there, misinformation is rampant and perhaps not enough research is done in advance. While “word of mouth” can be helpful, understand there are many differences among condominium communities that may well give a wrong impression to a potential buyer. No size fits all! Knowing everything that can be learned about a corporation in advance is fundamental to any buyer. For example, years later, we still hear the infamous phrase “you don’t have to do anything in a condominium – the board does it”. Those of us who have lived, worked and volunteered in a corporation know this isn’t true, at any level.
Owners should be aware that some diligent research on their part will help keep them from making an error.
The Condominium Authority of Ontario (CAO) is the legislative authority created to improve condominium living in Ontario. This is an excellent source for all potential and/ or repeat condominium buyers.
The Ontario’s Residential Condominium Buyers’ Guide was developed by CAO in collaboration with the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services (MGCS) and approved by the Minister as a helpful resource for prospective buyers of residential preconstruction/ new or resale condominium units. Owners can view it here: https://www.condoauthorityontario.ca/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/Ontarios- Condominium-Buyers-Guide-2020-1-1.pdf
We do recognize and applaud the owners who understand the rights and obligations that are theirs to make. (Taken from the Ontario’s Residential Condominium Buyers’ Guide last updated November 6, 2020)
- Attending and voting at owners’ meetings;
- Seeking election to the condo board, if qualified under the Condo Act;
- Reviewing certain records of the condo corporation, such as certain financial statements and meeting minutes;
- Requisitioning an owners’ meeting in certain circumstances;
- Using the common elements and amenities of the condo corporation in accordance
- Requesting that an item be added to an owners’ meeting agenda.
- Complying with the Condo Act and the condo corporation’s declaration, by-laws, and rules;
- Repairing and maintaining your unit in accordance with and subject to the Condo Act and the condo corporation’s declaration and by-laws;
- Paying your common expense fees on time;
- Notifying the condo corporation if your unit is leased; and
- Attending and voting at certain meetings
Along with their obligations within a community, owners wish to and need to feel welcome and appreciated. Every owner brings something to their community. They may not all wish to serve on the board of directors; but it was evident during these past years of the pandemic that kindness and compassion were obvious and invaluable among neighbours and communities.
Owners are members of your community and therefore a member of your team. Their support in whatever capacity they can share should be acknowledged and appreciated.
A potential buyer will undoubtedly have their own preferred professional connections to take them through a condominium purchase. It should be accepted however, that not all professionals are equal in their skills and knowledge necessary to share the condominium lifestyle and responsibilities of an owner, so the need to connect with professionals who have that expertise in condominiums is highly recommended.
Thank you To all of the owners who share the team effort to make their unit home and their community one to be proud of and enjoy, thank you so much.
Trish Kaplan, CCI (Hon’s) is the current part-time Administrator for the chapter; having served in the position from April 2003 to September 2010. She received the CCI Distinguished Service Award from CCI National in November 2006. Trish served as a director on the chapter board from 2010-2015 and was subsequently returned to the position of Administrator.
Trish is a condominium owner, served as a director of the corporation she resides in for a time and is a retired condominium manager.
Her experience in the different areas of condominium continues to be a benefit to the chapter and its members.
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