Of the over 8000 Condo Boards in Alberta, most run efficiently and show forth the care and concern of the ownership by way of their Board of Directors, whose action or inaction can affect the entire membership… morally, physically and financially.
A Condo Board’s first duty to the Corporation is fiduciary. It must do (and do well!) all the things that keep the Condo property in top-selling condition. It’s a fact that a happy community benefits from the high resale value. These things run the gamut from daily maintenance (landscaping, snow removal, signage, modernization and functionality), to book/record keeping, hiring the right contractor/engineering firm/reserve planner, clear concise communications (to or from property managers, the general ownership and amongst themselves) and to create a harmonic atmosphere by way of general rules, or bylaws … both abiding by and enforcing the Condominium Property Act/Regulations.
When the sun sets on your SW facing balcony and the beauty of Alberta tumbles into your living room unabated through simple or elaborately treated windows… well, there just isn’t anything better for the soul!
You can’t argue with the merits and value of spectacular esthetics, locations and sound financial footings of an efficiently run Condominium.
Corporations here in a province continually moving and shifting to make way for the future (which could include delays, traffic re-routing and multitudes of those orange and yellow safety vests).
Can you imagine the desirability and cosmopolitan air of the iconic condo structures surrounding the new arena when it’s finished? It makes my financial advisor fairly swoon!
There are some problems here and there for Condominium Corporations in our home province though and as I read, review and report disclosure documents on a regular basis, there can even be found some seriously disturbing elements.
Purchasing a Condo is akin to buying into a Corporation and so, there are disclosure documents the particular Corporation must provide to a prospective buyer in a timely manner. After all, you’re not just inheriting the assets, but the liabilities as well, as a member of a not-for-profit corporation.
Different types of Condos call for different sets of disclosure documents.
Buying from a developer, for instance, imposes the highest standards in ‘fair dealing’ and must provide for cancellation of a potential purchase within 10 days.
This clause must be clearly seen on the first or second page of the purchase contract and entitles a purchaser to cancel if the required documents are not presented in a timely way, with a full refund.
Don’t you also want to know if the land on which the unit is located is leased or has a mortgage? If it’s a ‘phased development’, you’ll also want such information stated plainly, as well as the maximum/minimum number of units in the completed project and a proposed physical appearance of each phase to determine the overall compatibility of form and function flow.
Other types of Condo purchases fall into the categories of ‘Bare Land’, ‘Resale’ and ‘Conversion’. Your Realtor®can help you through this maze. Confidence and clarity are in the details!
Did you know there are other types of spaces being considered for development as Condominiums, such as garages and storage spaces?
Owners have (and those considering should contemplate) the responsibilities inherent in co-ownership and the ultimate value of participation (as hard as this can be to do), as this makes for an efficient and effective corporation.
My RealHome Advice is simple… be involved! Vote at AGM’s, mix up the Boards of Directors with fresh people, skillsets, thoughts and ideas. Volunteer to help the boards with some of the smaller things, saving management costs, insist on open-door type communication.
Read, collect and understand the importance and relativity of all the documents the Corporation must provide and keep… and don’t look at the Condo Fee as a starting point in your search for a classy, modern and carefree lifestyle.
This can be misleading, as can the word ‘Fee’, as it is not a charge to live there, but a ‘contribution’ toward the sustainable future of the grounds and the Corporation involved.
Cheers to the Minister of Service Alberta and all those who participated by questionnaire or town hall, in the highly anticipated updating of Alberta’s Condominium Property Act.
It cannot be understated… confidence is in the details!
Sharon Blondin President/Owner CondoQuest Inc.