Defining Condo Corporation Leaders’ Rights and Responsibilities to Create Better Communities
When your condominium board members (and your property management team, if you are working with a professional management company) have a thorough understanding of their rights and responsibilities, it helps to create a more inviting community. Your community is more likely to be effectively managed and well-maintained, which leads to happier residents.
So what exactly are those rights and responsibilities? In this article, we’ve compiled a list to help you understand them better. (To learn about the rights and responsibilities of residents, read this article.)
The Rights of Condo Corporation Leaders
- Financial responsibility by residents. It’s reasonable and expected to hold residents accountable for meeting their financial obligations to the condominium corporation.
- Resident knowledge and compliance. Board members and community managers need to trust that residents are knowledgeable and willing to adhere to all condo corporation rules and regulations.
- Respect. All interactions among board members, property managers and residents must be characterized by fair and honest treatment, without exception.
- Constructive meetings. Even the most contentious corporation topics should be addressed positively and in ways that build consensus.
- Teamwork. Board members and property management staff shouldn’t have to go it alone – residents should work with community leadership to provide support, input and insight.
- Privacy. Community leaders shouldn’t always be on the clock. They have a right to personal time away from their jobs, including when they’re at home or enjoying condo amenities.
- Education. Board members and community managers should be able to attend trainings and workshops and have access to publications that will build skills and knowledge and enhance their effectiveness. (Of course, community managers should make sure that all educational activities are approved in advance by the condo corporation.)
- Operate in the best interests of the community. Board members and the property management team are obliged to lead operations and uphold fiduciary duties to protect the community’s value and lifestyle. They must make decisions in the best interests of the condo corporation. They should also utilize best practices and proven solutions to help achieve the corporation’s goals and vision.
- Be knowledgeable. Condo board members and community managers should be well versed in the community’s governing documents and applicable local and provincial laws and regulations. It is also important to remain up to date on all revisions and changes.
- Welcome new residents. Condo leaders and community managers should consistently welcome all new residents, both owners and renters. Not only is this a way to extend a friendly hand and be neighborly, it also serves to educate newcomers about the community.
- Provide access. Members of the condo corporation are entitled to receive copies of all appropriate records and documents upon request.
- Ensure timely payments. It’s up to corporation leaders to pay staff, contractors and vendors in a timely way, as well as to make sure that owners pay their dues and assessments on time. If individual residents have hardship situations, the board should make arrangements to help them meet their financial commitments. Foreclosure should only be used as a last resort, after exhausting all legal avenues.
- Encourage communication. Corporation leaders should send out emails, flyers and newsletters to communicate with homeowners. After all, engaged residents create stronger and happier communities. In addition, they should establish advisory committees and seek additional opportunities to solicit residents’ comments and feedback about community issues.
- Build community. A focus on creating fun, educational, social and entertaining events can build friendships, strengthen loyalty and foster a sense of neighbourliness throughout the community. As a bonus, it will also fortify the condo corporation as a whole.