I’ve said time and time again that one of the very best things about condominium living is the freedom from work such as mowing lawns and clearing snow. But someone has to arrange for all of the maintenance contracts to handle day-to-day upkeep in a building, and that’s the condominium corporation board of directors.
The first set of general rules is usually established by the developer when the condominium residents first take occupancy. Once the condominium corporation is in place, that group assumes responsibility for the specifics that will guide acceptable behaviour. The board manages the reserve funds, arranges maintenance contracts and serves as a liaison among residents. If and when any situations arise, suite owners have somewhere to turn.
The residents on the board are responsible for establishing a code of conduct that can make all the difference in creating a living environment that is enjoyable for everyone. As a resident, you can vote for the members of the board, and you can also consider running for a position yourself. Either way, it’s important for you to take an interest and get involved in your community-under-a-roof, which is what a condominium is.
Each resident should make a point to meet those who run for the condominium board, to make sure they have the best interests of the building at heart. It’s similar to voting for candidates running for public office: an educated voter is a responsible voter. And when you think of it, your condominium corporation board members affect your everyday life in a more immediate way than municipal, provincial and federal politicians.
Ask those who are running why they want to be on the board, and how they see things being run. The board will make decisions about many aspects of condominium living, such as policies regarding pets, noise, amenity use, etc. Boards that include members from different professions usually find that the combination of expertise works well.
Even if you think you don’t have time to serve on the board, you owe it to yourself to take an interest in those who do. A lot of our condominium purchasers tell me they enjoy sitting on the condominium board, because they like to keep a personal connection with the building’s dynamics. It’s easy to tell yourself that someone else will take care of these things, but in the end, the person who is responsible for your life is you!
Linda Mitchell is vice-president of Marketing, High-Rise for Monarch Corporation. In 2005, Linda was presented with the coveted OHBA SAMMY (Sales and Marketing Member of the Year) award. In 2003, she received the Riley Brethour Award acknowledging outstanding and consistent professional achievement in residential sales and marketing.