Privacy and Transparency in Strata Corporations

One of the things we are constantly reminded of in the real estate industry is the importance of disclosure, and any move towards transparency is a big step providing it doesn’t compromise privacy.

If you’ve been involved with financing or refinancing in the past year you’ll know communication seems to have become more complex and there are often delays getting approvals. Communication image2

Recently clients of mine were very grateful for their strata corporation having a website available to the public, which made it very easy for the lender, and helped prevent any unnecessary delays. The website provided minutes, bylaws, engineering reports, etc.

The message, “We’ve got nothing to hide”.

Today many strata corporations are choosing to be transparent in their communication, and have set up websites with documents that can be easily viewed and downloaded.

This is what is said by the Real Estate Council of BC at, (ix) Distribution of Strata Documents:

“The Strata Property Act does not contain any restrictions on the use of the documents once they have been provided by the strata corporation.”

“The Strata Property Act does not contain restrictions on how the documents can be used. However, the strata corporation may choose to impose such restrictions.”privacy image

I would strongly recommend that you encourage your strata corporation to allow access to records wherever it can save owners a lot of time and aggravation. Of course some records would be private and not posted.

How the depreciation report is funded is fast becoming the first piece of information of interest to a buyer or a lender for a strata titled property. The uncertainty of not knowing these details as we move forward is not going to help a seller either, and could cause a lot of grief by delaying the fulfillment of the contract. I would put the depreciation report high on my list of things to make available to the public, and I’ll do another more in-depth blog post on this soon.

If you have any questions that your strata agent cannot answer satisfactorily then speak to your privacy officer; this is someone on your council who is ‘accountable on the strata corporation’s behalf for its compliance with BC Personal Information Protection Act (PIPA).

 

 

Privacy and Transparency in Strata Corporations

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