New rules for Ontario based condo managers taking effect this fall

This fall, new rules are going to regulate the condo market. Managers of condos have to disclose whether they are owners or occupiers of units in the buildings. They have also to unveil whether they have any interest in the contracts involving the corporations.

The new rule is intended to protect condo owners and to avoid conflict of interest in the managerial sector.

The rules also provide that the managers need to pass mandatory training if they apply for a general license.

As part of the new rule, two administrative bodies will be launched. The Condominium Authority of Ontario will be in charge of training for condo owners on their rights and responsibilities. This unit will also manage the tribunal resolving disputes on access to records. Another body – the Condominium Management Regulatory Authority of Ontario – will be in charge of regulating the work of condo managers and their licensing.

What will new condo rules give to condo owners?

Up till now, the condo owners and corporations did not have the chance to take disputes to a tribunal. They had to hire a private mediator or go through the courts whenever they had an issue with neighbors or on other residential matters.

After the regulations take into effect, Ontario’s 1.6 million condo dwellers can dispute their issues to tribunals.

Tracy MacCharles who is the Minister of Government and Consumer Services said the regulations are designed “to provide greater confidence and security for condo owners in their investment and greater stability in their day to day lives.”

With 750,000 condo units in the province and 10,000 condominium corporations, the new rules are going to impact the community in a big sense.

Speaking about the training of condo managers, MacCharles said, “We want to ensure condo directors are equipped with the knowledge and the confidence to fulfill their roles.”

According to new regulations, those who will be elected to a condo board will be required to take an online starter course starting from Nov 1.

The fact that condo dwellers can take disputes to tribunals also will impact the condo community. “I’ve heard horror stories of people having to go through court. A tribunal might be the answer if a decision can be made expediently and cost-effectively,” a condo dweller said referring to the expensive and ineffective way of dispute management under the present rules.

The new rules encourage those in dispute to negotiate a resolution between themselves even before they move to an online mediator or tribunal adjudicator. This is a big step forward from ridiculously ineffective dispute resolution methods under the current system when condo dwellers have to spend thousands of dollars for a dog barking in the balcony.

Condominium Authority of Ontario Chair Tom Wright said the goal is “to resolve as many as possible at the early stage of the tribunal process.”

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