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Condo Smarts: Stratas should audit Air Space Parcel agreements

Dear Tony: Our strata is a combination of condos, a hotel and businesses on the ground floor. We share some common expenses for maintenance and repairs, on-site staff and insurance. The expenses are based on a formula included in our

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Woman with Alzheimer’s disease risks losing dog she relies on due to condo policy

“This animal isn’t a pet,” Murray said. “I had him registered with Service Dogs of Canada, as the law stated. I provided a doctor’s note stating the necessity of having this animal.”  The condo board said if Kaos was a

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Condo Questions: Owners should insure against loss of rental income

Q: My condo unit has been under repair for the past two months due to water seepage. During this time, my tenant has been unable live in the bedroom due to the mould, repairs and cleaning, so I have suffered

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Condo culture: Owners must follow rules when leasing units

Q. Our community consists of 52 condo townhouses and approximately 30 are rented out to mostly students. Our property is losing its appeal as an attractive and quiet environment. We used to enjoy our family-oriented community but that has now

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Condo owners do not get a deed to their views

Q: I read an article that you wrote in 2014 stating that condo owners do not own their view.  In our case, there is a movement afoot (mainly from first-floor owners who face a lake) to lop off existing trees

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New dispute resolution available for strata tenants and owners (BC)

Resolving strata property disputes used to involve a lengthy legal process that took up to three years and cost tenants and owners upwards of $30,000.  But not any more.  The Civil Resolution Tribunal (CRT) is an online portal that opened

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Condo Smarts: Commissioning of new building crucial for strata council

Dear Tony: We purchased our Burnaby condo in the spring and our strata is about to hold its first annual general meeting. One of the agenda items posed to the property manager is the requirement for commissioning of the building

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Legal Matters: How condo boards make decisions on repairs to common spaces

Question: Is the Board of Directors of my condominium required to present to owners the various financing options available when completing major maintenance or repair to the common elements, for example, the condominium’s roof?    Read the Q&A…………

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Keeping condominium owners in the loop: How to use communication committees effectively

It’s one of the most common complaints in condos — poor communication from the board or management to owners. Complaints of “We don’t know what’s going on!” or “We are paying the bills and you keep us in the dark!”

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Condo Q&A: Yes, we volunteered for the board of directors, but can we be paid for our work?

Q. We are a small condo corporation in Ontario and we, the board of directors, do a lot of the work to keep the corporation running smoothly. We feel we should be compensated for our efforts. Do we have to

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No condo too small after Victoria changes rules

As Victoria moves to allow more micro apartment units, public spaces have to become living spaces, and peoples’ attitudes toward vagrancy have to change, say some city councillors.  “I basically think we have to turn the page on that sort

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Rule-breaking tenant could lead to mediation: Condo Law

Q: We have tenants in our building who break the corporation’s rules. Our property manager says that nothing can be done unless we go to court. Is that true?    Read the Q&A…………..

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Condo Smarts: Sex offender has a right to live in strata

Dear Tony: No one in our strata has been prepared to talk about this issue, but we have found out we have a convicted sex offender living in our townhouse complex. Our strata is predominantly families and seniors.  We think

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Pane of glass falls from balcony of downtown condo building (ON)

No injuries have been reported after a pane of glass from a downtown condo building fell to the ground Wednesday morning.  It happened at a building located on Simcoe Street near Adelaide Street just before 8 a.m.  Police said the

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English not required for strata council meetings: Ministry of Housing (BC)

No amendments to B.C.’s Strata Property Act, to include English as the mandatory language of record in strata council meetings, appear to be in the works.  Following a spat over language between strata members in Richmond that has garnered international

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Coal Harbour condo dwellers call Pokemon pest control

Residents of a Coal Harbour condo building are now free of pesky Pokestops after complaining to the City of Vancouver and their MLA, as well as to the company that makes the popular augmented reality game.  “Their concern was there

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Court says ByWard Market condo board can block parking bid over security concerns (ON)

A commercial owner in the Place St. George condominium at 160 George St. approached the condo board in 2012 with a plan to convert about 30 existing monthly parking spaces to 24/7 pay-and-display hourly parking.  The board balked. “That was

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Condo owners, boards need to compromise when accidents happen

Q: The outdoor parking lot entrance/exit of our condo is located on a busy pedestrian street. There is a security gate that opens and closes to allow access to the parking lot, and includes a sensor (just as you would

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Condo lawsuit alleges balconies pose ‘serious safety risk’

Owners of units in a four-year-old condominium complex near St. Anne’s Road and Warde Avenue in Winnipeg have launched a lawsuit alleging multiple defects in their building, some of which they say pose safety risks.  Winnipeg condominium corporation number 807

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CityPlace condo residents endure 4th power outage in 2 weeks

Condo residents living in downtown Toronto’s CityPlace area are growing increasingly frustrated over the number of power outages they have had to endure in the past two weeks.    Read the article……………..

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Condo Smarts: Negotiating a fair deal for strata management

Dear Tony: Our strata council is interviewing for a new management company. Our previous company constantly changed our manager and council did all of the work we had contracted for.  In the past three months, no one has come to

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Condo Scene: Get all your building’s news on elevator ride

The digital revolution has influenced condo living in a big way. Now residents can vacuum remotely while sitting poolside in Miami and turn on their lights while riding up the elevator. Max TV’s founder, Moshe Lokshin, is taking advantage of

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Dog poop police could be coming to Toronto

If you don’t poop and scoop, you could be in for a nasty surprise. That’s because one company is trying to curb dog-waste related problems in Toronto.  As Metro reports, Poo Prints Canada has made its way to the city

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9 condo buildings at the waterfront without power again

Toronto Hydro is working through the night trying to restore power to up to 9 buildings in the city’s waterfront following a series of outages.   Read the article……………

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Owners battle rental companies for condo board control

A group of residents and owners took back control of their condo building Tuesday night from short-term rental companies they say had stacked the board of directors against them, and were allowing the building to be run like a hotel.

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Controversial Richmond strata returns to Mandarin-only meetings

Remember that Richmond townhouse owner that went to the Human Rights Tribunal because his strata council was holding their meetings in Mandarin only?  Well he says after a few months of improvement, with meetings in English and an interpreter, things

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Duplex owners at odds over strata rules

Dear Tony: We live in a Kitsilano duplex. The previous owners were good friends and we split the maintenance and expense of our strata for 10 years without any incidents. Since the new buyers have moved in everything has changed.

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Vancouver condo owners and renters upset by prolific AirBnb hosts

Airbnb listings in Vancouver condos continue to raise concern among some homeowners and renters.  Vancouver resident Diane Felske was shocked when she sold her one-bedroom Olympic Village apartment this summer, only to find it listed on Airbnb weeks later.  

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Condo Pet Owners Protest Proposed Pet Ban

Metro News recently reported that a proposed rule change to ban pets in a downtown Toronto condominium has caused considerable uproar among residents. The proposed rule would allow current owners to keep their existing pets, but no new pets would

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Condo Smarts: Borrow from contingency fund to avoid loan charges

Dear Tony: Every year, our strata corporation insurance renews at exactly the same time as our new budget is approved. As a result, we never have enough money in the our operating fund to pay the bill, so the strata

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Edmonton condo developer faces $5.5M lawsuit

A condo corporation has filed a $5.5-million lawsuit against Westrich Pacific Corporation, alleging the developer failed to fix issues at its two-building development in southwest Edmonton.  Westrich completed construction on Windermere Waters in December 2012. The lawsuit alleges deficient design

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Condo Culture: Suggestion box may help aid condo woes

Q. There seems to be a lot of petty disagreements that result in a lot of conflict in our condo community. It seems like we are divided into owners vs. directors vs the property manager. Are we the only condo

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Lawsuit targets Ontario’s $4-billion syndicated mortgage industry

Investors have launched a proposed class action against a high-profile Toronto-area condo development firm, with projects across Canada, that raises millions from mom-and-pop investors through risky pooled mortgage products—many of which are advertised as safe and “secure.”    Read the

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View d’état: Condo owners do not own their view

Q: I read an article that you wrote in 2014 stating that condo owners do not own their view. In our case, there is a movement afoot (mainly from first-floor owners who face a lake) to lop off existing trees

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Toronto condo board’s pet ban sparks vigorous debate

Condominiums and dogs are inseparable from most street-level views in downtown Toronto. Whether canines are allowed through the front door is another story and, at times, a bone of contention.     Read the article…………

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Realty Assessments – Should You Consider an Appeal?

Condominium common elements are generally exempt from realty assessment and taxation, subject to certain exceptions noted in Section 15 of the Condominium Act, 1998. But condominium corporations can also own land. For instance, condominium corporations may own one or more:

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Toronto condo owners barking mad over proposed pet ban

A condo board proposal to ban pets in their buildings has left some CityPlace residents barking mad.  “I think it’s just outrageous,” said dog owner Prasanthy Kudrati, who lives at 3 Navy Wharf Court.  Krudrati said her building and 5

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Condo Smarts: B.C. stratas have effective means to collect debts

Dear Tony: Our townhouse complex has been using a collection service to deal with unpaid strata fees, special levies and fines. Some owners have complained about being harassed and bullied for fees they do not owe, or additional fees on

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Residents fighting back after condo board proposes pet ban (ON)

When one envisions a trendy Torontonian living in one of the city’s flourishing condo communities, the image of a fashionable figure walking a small dog while cradling a tall latte comes to mind.  The latte can stay, but the dog

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UPDATE: Nearly 100 seniors moving to temporary homes after Surrey condo fire

The nearly 100 seniors displaced by a devastating Surrey condo fire this weekend have now been moved to temporary accommodations.  Councillor Bruce Hayne says they’re getting help from emergency social services and that aid agencies have stepped in to help

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Nearly 100 homeless after massive Surrey (BC) condo fire

It was finally contained after several hours but crews continued to battle a four-alarm condo fire on 121a street at 82nd Avenue in Surrey well into the early morning hours.  That fire has displaced around a hundred of residents into

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Reasonable use of common space protected: Condo Law

Management put out a notice saying children are not allowed to play on the back lawn — except for kids under 6 years old who can play on the swing and slide in the designated playground with parent supervision. Older

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Company defends right to rent condos on Airbnb

Amidst calls for government regulation of short-term rentals, some condo owners are considering legal options to protect their ability to keep hosting through sites like Airbnb.  H&P Properties helps owners find guests for their home and co-foudner Lisa Marion said

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Condo owners call on city to rein in Airbnb

Tensions are rising in the corridors of Toronto’s condo buildings as some owners look to cash in by listing their units on short-term rental sites like Airbnb, while others are calling on the city to step in and stop them.

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Condo Q&A: Why is our condo community like a kids’ playground? Can’t everyone just get along?

Q. We have a lot of petty disagreements that result in conflict in our condo community. It seems like we are divided into owners versus directors versus the property manager. Are we the only condo community that has this problem?

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Former La Carnita patio now open for public use after fight with condo owners, officials

The fences are now down where a private patio for La Carnita restaurant on John Street once stood.  The move to open the space up comes after a heated dispute between the business, residents in the condo tower above and

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Condo Smarts: ‘Abandoned’ elderly parents create problems for stratas

Dear Tony: We have an owner in our building who should never have been moved into a condo. There have been a number of fires in her suite, she is constantly giving strangers keys to our buildings, and her personal

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CRTC could suspend residents’ Internet service unless condo grants access to fourth telecom

Canada’s telecom watchdog threatened to cut off Internet and television services to all residents of a Toronto condo complex unless the condo corporation allows a fourth telecom access to its buildings. It’s the third time the regulator has resorted to

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Condo culture: Don’t feed the squirrels — let nature take its course

Q. Some of the residents in our community insist on feeding the squirrels. This has caused constant damage from digging in our gardens and peanut shells everywhere. Now they are crawling up the wall trying to find an entry point.

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Capital reserve fund exists to minimize special assessments

Q: Due to mismanagement over the years, the monthly fee on a condo my sister purchased in 2005 increased from $350 to $436 to $644 per month following an assessment in January 2015. Is this allowed? The reserve fund was

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