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How to avoid condo board breakdowns

When a condominium community goes to war, everyone loses. The owners lose trust in the board of directors’ ability to manage the condominium. Necessary repairs go undone. Not enough money is collected to pay for future repairs. Nothing gets accomplished, and

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What is a Reserve Fund Study?

A reserve fund is a separate fund that is maintained by the condominium corporation. The reserve fund is funded by condominium owners, and is used to pay for the major repair and replacement of common elements and assets of the

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How to run a condominium meeting

Are you the Director of a Condo Association or Condo Board? Efficiently and effectively running a Board Meeting can be harder than it sounds. To ensure you are making the most of everyone’s time, follow these easy tips. As always,

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Introduction to Condominiums

Condominiums have become increasingly popular in recent years among all age groups, including younger first time buyers and empty nesters. A condominium is actually a legal definition that refers to a method of ownership, not a type of building.  

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Different Types of Condominiums

In Ontario, there are a number of types of condominiums that may be developed. Under the Condominium Act, 1998, the types of condominiums provided for fall into two categories: leasehold and freehold. There are then four subcategories of freehold condominiums:

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Toronto condo fraud: Embezzlement, kickbacks and bid-rigging

“Condo owners in Ontario lose millions of dollars a year, because of bid rigging and fraud,” alleges Anne-Marie Ambert, a retired York University sociology professor who was recently on the expert panel of the Ministry of Consumer Service’s review of

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Canada: Service Animals In No-Pet Condos

Pets in condominiums is a very controversial topic. Some condominiums prohibit pets and other condominiums allow them. Prudent pet owners should be checking the condominium’s documents before buying a condominium to ensure that pets are permitted.   Read More…..

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Condominium Dispute Resolution Model for Ontario

In early 2012, the Joint Government Relations Committee of the Association of Condominium Managers of Ontario (ACMO) and the Toronto & Area Chapter of the Canadian Condominium Institute (CCI) formed a Dispute Resolution Sub-Committee.  Following is their report:

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How can condo directors avoid personal liability?

We have, in the recent past, blogged about the Boily case. In this Ottawa case, a board of directors was found to be in contempt of court and was ordered to personally pay in excess of $96,000 in legal costs.

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The key to safety in a condo fire? Be prepared

Do you know what to do if there’s a fire in your condo? Though there are codes to ensure buildings are constructed to a high standard of safety, there are other things you can do as a condo resident to

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Welcome and wisdom to new condo directors

Dear New Board Member(s): I wish to extend my congratulations and gratitude for accepting what is a major responsibility, that is, serving on the board. The purpose of my letter is to offer some words based upon my own experience

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How to Tame a Rogue Condo Board Member

Have you ever dealt with a bullying or disruptive board member? Sometimes referred to as a “rogue”, this director can arise almost unsuspectingly, wreaking havoc on board meetings and threatening the effective and efficient business of your condo corporation. Sound

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Condo Scene: Keeping safe in a condo fire

Do you know what to do if there’s a fire in your condo? Though there are codes to ensure buildings are constructed to a high standard of safety, there are other things you can do as a condo resident to

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How should a strata deal with the owner from hell? – part 3

In my January 2012 and July 2012 blog posts, I discussed the ongoing saga of the Jordisons, arguably the epitome of strata owners from hell. For a period of years, the Jordisons continually behaved in an obnoxious and outlandish manner

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Canada: Condo cost rulings tilting away from generous awards

Several court decisions dealing with cost recovery have emanated out of condo land lately. While the ratios vary, the scattering takes on a distinct shape when viewed as a group that’s trending away from generous cost awards for condominium boards

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Time to abolish the owner-occupied director position

It is rare for us at Ontario Condo Law Blog to beat up on an underdog, but the owner-occupied reserved position on condo boards is decidedly worthy of that honour. That reserved position (set out in the Condominium Act, 1998, subsections

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Crime at the Condo

A disjointed sense of personal violation follows a crime. Are condos targets for all manner of malfeasance?  Read More……

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Condo owners may find disputes covered by provincial Condominium Act

Q: Our board failed to specify the reason for a special assessment, as required by our bylaws. A request for the reason was unsuccessful and I contacted the Ministry of Consumer Services. A ministry representative advised they do not enforce

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Condo culture: Rules are rules and they apply to all residents

Q: I just moved into a high-rise condominium. I found out after I moved in that there’s a weight limit on dogs. The dog I was going to buy is 4.5 kilograms over the limit established by the condominium rule. It

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Condo Etiquette – the power of please and thank you

Do you ever have days when everyone seems downright rude? I have no idea what the cause is — perhaps it’s the barometric pressure or the phase of the moon. But when you try to keep calm and carry on

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Ontario: Directors personally responsible for costs of litigation to quash owners’ rights

Noteworthy costs awards were recently released in Middlesex Condominium Corporation No. 232 v. Owners, which we cited as number 6 in our top 10 condo law cases of 2012 as follows: Faced with an increasingly unhappy ownership, the board commenced

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To condo owners – speak up

I hate to harp, but while the fallout over the provincial budget is astounding and distracting, there is other business to attend to that may have an immediate effect on the life, liberty and bank balance of hundreds of thousands

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Asbestos in the condominium – now what?

The Condominium Act, 1998, SO, c.19 (the “Act”) is sometimes inaccurately viewed as addressing all things related to the function and maintenance of a condominium corporation. The common law and other legislation greatly affect how a corporation must be managed

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5 things you don’t know about condo fees

For many homebuyers, the issue of condo fees is as contentious as they come. In one camp are those who can’t see past paying money into an association that may or may not use that money effectively; in the other

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The challenge of condo design upgrades ever-growing

In a prior column on ‘The Southampton’, a condominium located in the west end of Toronto, I indicated that it is a noteworthy example of a property that has been maintained in outstanding condition throughout its current lifespan of nearly

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Canada: Fraud forces condo owners to pay thousands

Their fears are coming true. Hundreds of people across Toronto who own units in condo buildings allegedly defrauded of millions of dollars by a former property management company are now coughing up big bucks for special assessment fees.  Read More……

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Canada: Realtor rallies disgruntled condo owners

While condominium owners love to moan and groan about the problems with the developments in which they live, getting them to join an industry consumer action group is like trying to pull teeth.  “We’ve been trying to have condo owners

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On further thought . . . Reversing earlier board decisions

A recent decision of the Ontario Small Claims Court tackles the interesting issue of whether and how condominium boards can reverse earlier decisions in maintenance and repair scenarios.  Read More……

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Canada: Condo Directors Held Personally Liable For Legal Costs

The Condominium Act (the “Act”) has several provisions (sections 85, 134(5) and 135(3) which place the financial burden of obtaining compliance orders on those responsible for the non-compliance, thus relieving innocent owners of this financial burden. There are numerous reported

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The Battle With Homeowners Associations

Congratulations! You’ve just bought a new house in a great neighbourhood and you’re ready to move in. A signed contract together with all the necessary documents is resting in your briefcase. Is there anything that can disturb your happiness? Many

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