Seven Important Things to Know About Condominium Boards

Posted on Tuesday May 12, 2015

The condominium corporation is represented by a board of directors that are elected annually at the corporation’s Annual General Meeting (AGM). On behalf of the rest of the owners, the board decides the corporation’s policies, programs and budgets.

Condominium boards have several important functions. Both residents and board members should have a clear understanding what these responsibilities are. Creating awareness goes a long way toward building a healthy condominium community.

So, whether you are a seasoned board member or someone who is new to condominium living, here is a list of essential condo facts on which you should be clear.

When it comes to elections:
  1. They are annual.  For the most part, condominium board elections are held yearly at the AGM. In order for the elections to be valid they must adhere strictly to the condominium corporation’s bylaws.
  2. The number of elected board members varies. The number of board members on a condominium board varies with each corporation. The total number is defined by each condominium’s bylaws; it is usually between three and seven members.

What is the basic role of the condominium board?
  1. Manage. Every organization needs management. The role of your condominium board is to be the managing body for the condominium corporation. 
  2. Make Decisions. The condominium board is responsible for the day-to-day decision-making. On behalf of the rest of the owners, the board decides the corporation’s policies, programs and budgets. Often a board will enlist the services of a professional management company. The manager provides guidance and assistance as needed, working within the guidelines established by the board to carry out the daily operations of the condominium community. The manager is employed by the board and works with the best interest of the entire community in mind.
  3. Compliance. Your board is restricted in its actions. It must act within the parameters set out by the Condominium Property Act, as well as the condominium’s own bylaws and policies. The same applies to all residents in the community. A harmonious relationship can only exist if all parties know and adhere to the rules. It is the property manager’s role to help ensure compliance.

Who is eligible to sit on the condominium board?
  1. All owners can sit on the condominium board – for the most part. One of the great things about condominium living is the democratic nature of the board. Any owner is eligible to be part of it, with a few important exceptions. For example, an owner can be prevented from serving if his or her condominium unit is in arrears. If a unit has multiple owners, usually only one of the owners named on title will be allowed to serve on the board. Check your bylaws for the restrictions that apply to your community
  2. Tenants, company representatives and others can be board members too. In some cases, spouses who are not on the title, or children of owners, can also be eligible. The critical point here is the bylaws must specifically allow this.
By knowing the basics of your condominium board, you are equipped to get more out of it (and hopefully, put more into it, too). For more information on the roles of a condo board and how it is created and maintained, contact FirstService Residential.

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