The Provincial Government has finally passed two important pieces of legislation to help protect consumers under Bill 106. The, Protecting Condominium Owners Act, 2015 (PCOA, 2015) and the Condominium Management Services Act, 2015 as part of the PCOA, 2015. We’ve gone over the 173 page document and consulted some pros so you don’t have to.
What are the major changes?
- Clearer, more comprehensive rules to prevent owners from being surprised by unexpected costs after purchasing a newly-built condo – We’re really interested to know what/when this is going to happen. Too many unknowns when buying pre-con but the experienced Agents will be able to paint a pretty accurate picture here to minimize surprises .
- A new Condominium Authority to provide quicker, lower-cost dispute resolution and help prevent common disputes
- Strong financial management rules for condo corporations to help prevent financial and organizational mismanagement
- Better governance requirements for condo boards, including training for condo directors
- Mandatory licensing and education requirements for condominium managers
We contacted a friend of Spring Realty, Steven Christodoulou: President and CEO of ICC Property Management and past president of the Association of Condominium Managers of Ontario to make a few comments.
Here’s what he had to say:
What is the most important change they’ve made?
Bill 106 was a collaborative effort with input from all stakeholders surrounding the condominium industry and condominium living. It focuses much more on consumer protection with the addition of the Condominium Authority and much more protection for new condominium purchasers. The Act goes a long way with new developments with a Prescribed Form of Disclosure Statement and Declaration and greater accountability for falsely low 1st year budgets, 1st year reserve fund contributions and budgetary shortfalls in the first year.
What are you most looking forward to about the changes?
Since 2011, both ACMO and CCI have lobbied the Provincial Government for a complete overhaul of the Ontario Condominium Act, 1998, for Licensing of Condominium Managers and for fair taxation for condominium owners. We’ve succeeded in two of the three asks. Personally, I am looking forward to the Mandatory Licensing of Condominium Managers in Ontario. It seems absurd that the Government requires a license to sell one unit, but doesn’t require a license to manage 300. This will increase the level of service and professionalism in the industry.
Do these changes go far enough?
Bill 106 is definitely as step in the right direction providing much more consumer protection. We now wait on the regulations which will complete the Act and provide much more detail.
Do you think this will make a difference?
Absolutely. This will go a long way in starting the relationship between Developer and Unit Owner on the right foot.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Many industry professionals are excited for Bill 106 as it is long overdue. There has been a huge boom in the condominium market since the last Act was proclaimed into Law in 2001. New condominium developments are much more complex and we hope that Bill 106 will address the many issues facing condominium management today.
Now if they only added something in there that prevented Sales Reps and Brokers who don’t know the intricacies of pre-construction condos (or just condos in general) from selling them, we’d be in a great spot. One step at a time I guess! Our business at Spring is 50% houses 50% condos and we are cautious buying pre-con as an investment as developers are starting to raise their prices and focus more on the end user so margins are thin to non-existing for flippers but could work for some buy-hold investors. Comment below, use our live chat, or contact us to continue the convo.