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Strata fed up with Habitat for Humanity (BC)

Habitat for Humanity’s cleanup at a Burnaby strata complex almost two weeks ago did more harm than good, according to a whistleblower.  The volunteer, who worked on the site at 8745 Government St. and wished not to be named for

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Giving electric vehicle owners a charge (ON)

Electric vehicles have been on the market for three years in Canada. Enter Plug’n Drive, a not-for-profit whose mission is to accelerate the penetration of those vehicles into the consumer market.    Read more……..

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Condo Smarts: Stratas and smart meters

Dear Tony: As a strata manager, I am faced with many requests by service providers to obtain access to a strata corporation to either service a building or conduct maintenance or modifications to a building.    Read more………

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Condo committees must be created by the board

Q Some of us owners think a condo committee would be an asset to our community. We would like to organize one and have volunteers join us. What is the normal procedure for setting up such a committee and what

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Police arrest lawyer accused of failing to return condo deposits

Police have arrested a lawyer who allegedly bilked condo buyers out of millions of dollars in deposits after a building that was planned for North York was scrapped by the developer.   Read more………

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Montreal family forced out of dangerous Plateau condo

A Montreal family says it was forced from its home because city officials did not act fast enough after a wall of their condo building began to lean.   Read more…….

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Condo Q&A: Navigating the headaches of common area renovations

Q: Our condominium board wants to renovate some common property areas, but there is no current reserve fund study (it is two years overdue). The condominium corporation is currently repairing an outside wall, which required a special assessment, and the

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‘Casual’ strata must get organized

Dear Tony: We live in a very casual 12-unit strata corporation in Kitsilano. Everyone basically does their own thing as we are in townhouses, and whenever we need money for a project we have a quick meeting and everyone writes

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Condo Smarts: Who has to fix the water pipes in a bare-land strata?

Dear Tony: Our bare-land strata is an 88-unit mobile home park in the interior.  Each unit has a direct hookup to the main sewer line that serves our property. We have been starting to have some serious problems with damages

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When a dying hedge is a major condo repair

A 30-foot, common-element hedge planted by the developer has been dying for five years, and is presently three-quarters dead. Replacement with a similar hedge will cost in excess of ten per cent of our budget. Can the reserve fund be

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Technicality helps Chilliwack Mountie avoid paying fines to strata council (BC)

An RCMP officer in Chilliwack who was facing $16,450 in strata fines arising from an allegation he had illegally rented his condo has gotten off on a technicality.    Read more……..

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Condo Smarts: Issues of insurance

Dear Tony: Our strata council has been struggling with an issue in our building that involves insurance claims in a strata lot.   Our property manager tells us that if a claim happens in a strata lot, it is the owner’s

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James Bay condo owner challenges hefty building repair bills (BC)

A James Bay condo owner has filed a court petition demanding transparency from the building’s property management company over repair bills that he says are questionable.    Read more………..

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Shangri-La balconies off-limits after falling glass prompts test (ON)

Condo residents at Toronto’s Shangri-La hotel are being told not to use their balconies after several incidents of falling glass.     Residents received the notice on August 5 after the city issued an “order to remedy unsafe building.”     Read

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Results of CMHC’s Survey of Condominium Owners in Toronto and Vancouver

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) released the results of its 2013 Condominium Owners Survey today showing that 82.9% of the condominium owning households surveyed reside in their unit and 17.1% are condominium investors.     Read more……..

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$50M St. Albert condo complex scrapped, potential homeowners out thousands (AB)

Until recently, plans were in place for a multi-million dollar condo complex in St. Albert – but plans have fallen through, leaving potential homeowners out thousands of dollars.        Read more………

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Condo board contempt rap upheld in battle for status quo (ON)

Hell hath no fury like condo residents scorned.  A years-long legal slugfest pitting a rogue condo board against six nettled residents reached another milestone Wednesday after the province’s highest court largely upheld a judgement against the directors of a Bay

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Missing condo-fee payments could lead to mortgage default

Q. If an owner is late with their monthly condo fee, does the corporation immediately have a lien against the unit owner in default?   Read more…….

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Hot tub can be a hot issue for condo board

Is a hot-tub installation allowed in the owner’s exclusive-use common element backyard?   Read more……….

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Who pays for flood damage?

Dear Tony: There is a lot of confusion in our building about who is responsible for damage to a strata lot when there is a flood upstairs. We have had a few claims in the past five years, and most

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Condo Smarts: Whose job is it to fix the balcony?

Dear Tony: Our strata has sent a notice reminding us that we are responsible to maintain and repair our balconies, and that it includes the railings, siding and the decking. Several owners, with old balconies in a serious state of

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Who is in charge, the condo board or the property manager?

Q Who is in charge of our condo property? The manager seems to be making all the decisions and the directors are just going along with those decisions. Isn’t the board supposed to be voting on issues at board meetings?

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Damage estimate for condo fire increases to $10M (AB)

A day after a fire broke out in a west Edmonton condo building, causing millions of dollars in damages; officials with the condo board were releasing plans for residents to get their possessions back.     Read more…….

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Strata wants a spare key

Dear Tony: Does a strata corporation have a right to demand a key to my strata lot to gain access at their discretion? The owners in our Kitsilano building have been told we have to provide a key, otherwise if

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Condo Smarts: Limits to limited common property

Dear Tony: Our strata council has been struggling with the ongoing problems with one of our owners planting trees in their backyard area, which is limited common property, as well as the surrounding common property of the strata corporation.  

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Condo eyes smoking ban after devastating fire

Some of those left homeless following a massive fire that tore through a west Edmonton condo earlier this week would like to see their building ban smoking.   Read more…….

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Massive fire damages ‘multiple’ condos in downtown Kitchener

No one was hurt in a fire that ravaged a downtown Kitchener condominium complex at St. Leger and Louisa streets early Tuesday morning.   Read more……

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Early morning condo fire forces residents out of homes

A fire at a large condominium complex in southwest Edmonton forced about 400 residents from their homes early Monday morning.    Read more…….

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Condo Culture: Proper reserve fund crucial to keep condo community on track

Q: My husband and I were stunned when the auditor began to read his report at our annual general meeting. We found out the reserve fund study was not updated every three years as required. We also found out total

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Fumes from neighbour’s condo reno a health issue

Q: I live in a condo highrise that I used to enjoy very much. However, the neighbour below me has been sanding and renovating for quite some time now. Up to this point my husband and I have been very

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Glass falls from Toronto’s Shangri-La condo — again — as city tests to see if tower glass is faulty

It was déjà vu all over again for downtown Toronto residents as a pane of glass broke and fell more than 50 storeys Thursday, smashing onto a busy street at the height of the morning commute.      Read more…….

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Clean up those strata bylaws

Dear Tony: Our strata corporation adopted three new bylaws at our AGM in April to bring our pet, rental and parking bylaws up to date, and then filed in the Land Title Registry the following week.    Read more…….

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Condo Smarts: Bylaw brouhaha

Dear Tony: What happens when a bylaw contradicts the Strata Act?  We are a 128-unit, mixed-use strata corporation that was constructed in 2005.     Read more………

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Getting high in my high-rise, thanks to my neighbours

Q I live in a condo high-rise that I used to enjoy very much. However, lately the neighbour below me has been sanding and renovating for quite some time now. Up to this point my husband and I have been

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Strata Living: Who owns the records?

Dear Tony: Our strata corporation has a management company who maintains our records and documents as part of our contract. The strata council has recently requested copies of the form B information certificates and any alteration agreements with owners to

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Condo Smarts: Do we stay or do we liquidate?

Dear Tony: We live in a 42-year-old building that is really past its “best before” date. Our owners are struggling with the big question of what to do with our building, because we know we are facing about $1 million

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Keeping a condo building functioning is all about the paperwork

Q We are getting ready to have our reserve fund study completed. What information do we have to get ready for the engineer? Before deciding which engineering firm we choose, we want to have our records in order. Thank you.  

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Condo Smarts: Decisions can be tricky for condos

Bylaws spell it out: Any eligible voter at special general meeting can request a secret ballot on a vote   Read more……..

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Condo Q&A: Corporation likely on hook for leak damages

Q: What happens when damage within a unit is directly due to external damage, neglect, or improper maintenance? I live in a townhouse-style condominium, where previous roofing repairs created further damage causing a leak within my unit.     Read more………

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Condo Smarts: Keeping secrets

Dear Tony: We have a special general meeting coming up in mid July that will include four special resolutions. All of them will be controversial — two are for major repairs requiring special levies and the other two are petitioned

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70 flags draped from condo balconies to celebrate Canada Day

A high rise condominium on Saskatchewan Drive is adorned with dozens of Canadian flags thanks to the efforts of one of its residents.    Read more……..

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Massive condo blaze fueled by gas leak

Investigators have figured out what started that massive condo fire in Fort McMurray on Friday. A piece of equipment hit a gas line, putting a six-inch gash in the line. It also hit the main building’s power line. The spark

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Should Vancouver strata have been consulted?

Dear Tony: I am a new council member on my strata of 84 units in Vancouver. We have not yet had our first council meeting, but we have been told by the past president of council that as approved by

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New Saskatchewan condo laws make regulation stricter

Significant changes to Saskatchewan’s condo laws took effect this month, with more to follow next year.  New regulations in the Condominium Property Act address condo conversions, insurance, as well as regular audits for condo boards. Additionally, two-thirds of ownership is

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Fort McMurray condo fire a near ‘catastrophe,’ says neighbour

Firefighters and residents alike say a condo fire in Fort McMurray could have been a major disaster if not for the quick actions of emergency workers.   Read more………

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City asked to designate public spaces on private property (ON)

In July, city council will decide whether new condo and commercial developments that incorporate green space, courtyards and other open spaces into their plans should be required to post signs stating the public is welcome.     Read more………

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Condo Smarts: Gloves come off in the garage

Dear Tony: Our strata council decided to host a garage sale in our parking garage this weekend. Our strata has done this in the past and it has worked out very well provided the sun was shining and we could

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Our condo board prez is the boss of everything. How do we dump him?

Q Our current condo president disregards everything the other directors say. He will not listen and seems to think he can make all the decisions without consulting the rest of the board. The rest of us board members feel our

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New Condo Rules Unveiled Today (MB)

The Manitoba government is introducing new rules designed to protect condo buyers.  The new Condominium Act wil extend the cooling off period from 48 hours to a full week.    Read more……..

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Condo Smarts: Strata board can tell you to butt out

Dear Tony: What happens if you are a smoker who lives in a strata building, and the building adopts a bylaw that prohibits smoking in all areas of the building, including your strata lot? My mother lives in a condo

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