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Condo Smarts: New regulations coming into effect

Two changes to the Strata Property Act regulations will be made in April and November.

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Dear Tony:

At our last annual meeting, there was much confusion about our annual budget and our contribution to our reserve fund.

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The new changes to the Strata Property Act announced last week appear to keep the minimum contribution at 10 percent, which we have diligently applied in our 22 years.

At the meeting, several owners, including a real estate agent, raised the question that we are now required to replenish funds spent the previous year on top of the 10 percent minimum.

In the end, the budget was approved, and 10 percent of our annual operating budget was approved for contingency.

Please explain the approved regulations in plain language to help us clear up the confusion.

– Karen W., North Vancouver

Dear Karen:

There were no changes to the Strata Property Act; These were changes to the regulations, which can be confusing if you don’t read all the regulations that were passed and when they came into effect.

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Immediately effective were the Strata Property Act amendments to regulations that applied to age and tenancy statutes. Regulations are made by a Council decision and are not debated or passed in the legislature. With the abolition of the rental statute and the age limit of 55 years, the regulations specifying the law had to be changed. These were simply budget changes to complete the changes passed in November; However, two more changes will come into effect in April and November.

Beginning April 1, 2023, all Strata companies must include a copy of their certificate of insurance with any Form B information certificate requested. The certificate of insurance is the summary document provided to owners as part of their insurance report at their annual meeting. This shows the valid and active insurance, the costs, commissions, coverage and deductibles. It is an important document that often influences a buyer’s interest.

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On November 1, 2023, the changes regarding contributions to the provident fund will come into effect. You’re right; Most Strata companies already contribute the minimum 10 percent to their reserves, and this will have little or no impact on their business or Strata fees.

There is no change or obligation to repay expenses from the reserve fund. If your annual general meeting is on or after November 1st, or if the financial year begins on November 1st, this minimum will apply. The 10 percent minimum contribution also applies to new developments submitted on or after November 1st. The owner/developer is required to contribute 10 percent of the transitional operating budget to Strata Corporation’s contingency fund. The exemption from contributions once a certain level has been reached no longer applies.

To obtain updated copies of Form B, visit the BC government housing website or log on to choa.bc.ca to receive free automatic e-notification updates.

Tony Gioventu is Managing Director of homeowners association. E-mail [email protected].

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