By September 29, 2018—
If you find strata properties confusing, don’t worry! You’re not the only one by any means. Owning a strata property isn’t like owning a detached house. The rules are different when it comes to property concerns. Strata are governed under the provincial Strata Property Act, but each strata can also then make their own rules within that framework.
If you are in a strata property, then the ownership of a property is shared through an owner’s corporation.
With all these rules, you might be wondering about how they affect you? What are you responsible for in your condo or townhouse?
As an owner, your responsibilities are simple. You must:
Pay your rates and taxes on time
You are expected to pay a certain amount each month to cover the common expenses of the development. Your individual fee is assessed by taking the total cost of the strata’s expenses and dividing that by the unit entitlement of your strata lot. Basically this means that the larger your home, the larger your fee will be.
Let the owner’s corporation know if the ownership or occupancy changes
It’s fine if you have someone renting out your place. But really, you should be letting the corporation know who to expect to see coming out of your front door. They might get worried if they see a random person hanging out on your front porch. Also, check the by-laws to make sure you are even allowed to rent out or sublet your place.
Comply with the by-laws
This one’s a given. Don’t be the exception to the rules, because there aren’t any. The rules are in place for a reason. Don’t break them! You have a problem, bring it up in the next strata meeting.
Behave in a way that doesn’t offend other residents
How you act is a reflection of not only the people around you, but also on your own character. Sure, you can choose to behave how you want to, but if it reflects poorly on others, then don’t do it. Being in a strata property comes with responsibility. You should always be respectful to the other owners and to yourself.
Not make alterations to the lot without consent from the owners corporation and the local council
It’s great if you want a pink house, but when all of the other homes around you are blue, you might stand out in an awkward way. By being part of a strata, it means that you are required to follow the same rules as everyone else. While you may be the owner of your home, you share ownership of the area with the people around you. There may be a bit more flexibility if you have a townhouse as you can add a garden, but you can’t paint the hallway walls if you are in a condo. Remember, you share the space with everyone else.