This post is not about the slick (and mindboggling success of) marketing ploys of developers to “liquidate” their bulk over-supply of over-priced condos throughout Metro Vancouver; although just the thought makes me shudder.
The condo liquidation phenomenon I am referring to here is likely to become more prevalent as more buildings realize that their short-sighted focus to keep the condo operating fees low is in fact destructive.
The concept of a longer-term (20-25 years) maintenance plan with a capital budget is not widely practiced by strata corporations in BC, when in fact it should be required by law to protect owners.
More strata corporations with artificially low fees will soon be discovering that the cost to restore their buildings will be beyond, or close to, the value of selling to recover land value (if they’re lucky). An extra $25 to $50 each month per suite would probably have covered all costs and kept the building in great shape.
The Buchanan v. S.P. VR 1411, 2008 BCSC 977 judgment of BC Supreme Court Justice, Victor Curtis, contains the following comment: “The good intention of the Strata Property Act notwithstanding this strata property, is dysfunctional both on a structural and organization level”.
With the lack of adequate legislation (Strata Property Act) and supporting regulations, I believe we have known the collapse of strata corporations was inevitable. These inadequacies have led to poorly prepared and insufficiently supported owners trying to work within a broken government imposed framework.
The licensing of strata managers a few years back was a half-measure to what was needed, and the fact that Bill 12, the Strata Property Amendment Act, was allowed to die on the Order Paper in the BC Legislature this past week is unbelievable. But I suppose we shouldn’t be surprised by this nonchalance given the provincial governments atrocious track-record the past decade.
Personally I have contributed different ideas for legislative changes to the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver, the Condominium Home Owners Association of BC, and the Vancouver Island Strata Owners Association, all of whom made submissions to the provincial government.
With all of the consultation and voluntary work completed by an array of organizations and consumers the past number of years, and finally submitted to the Province, the provincial governments continual lack of concern for consumer protection around housing issues has reached new lows in BC.
The consequence is that many more British Columbian families will be losing their homes.
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