CCI-London and Area's first newsletter of the 2022/2023 year.
CCI Review Quarterly Condominium Newsletter
In This Issue
2 2 3 3 4
Invite to Brag
Remembering Donald J. Peter Chapter Communiquê Welcome New Members BRAG Shorts – MCC No. 89
Leader of the Condominium Institute 8 Director Training and the Importance of CCI 9 Top Six Fire Safety Tips 12 Inflation is Coming for You 14 Managing Different Culinary Smells in Shared Living Spaces 17 CCI Publications Are Digital 18 CAT Case: The Importance of Pleadings 19 Announcing 2022/23 Sponsors 20 Education is Always a Worthwhile Investment 21 Invite to 30 th CCI AGM 21 Risk Management in a HighRise 22 Understanding Condominium HVAC Water Treatment 26 A Looming Threat for Condo Reserves 28 Protecting Your Trees 29 Summer Condo Maintenance Checklist 31 Fall Condo Maintenance Checklist 32 A Lifestyle Change – Your First Condo Buy 33 Benefits of Accounts Payable Automation 34 CMRAO NEWS 35 Q&A – Inflation in Condos 36 A Memory: the 11 th Annual Golf Tournament 38-45 Scam Alert 46 CMRAO Enforcement News 46 Thanks to Writers & Advertisers 47
President ’ s Message
It has been a true honor and pleasure to serve as President this year. As we usher in our 30 th anniversary year, we continue to face significant challenges while we persevere to fully recover from the impacts of COVID - 19; not only within the communities and among the people we serve; but the country has a whole. CCI - London and Area Chapter is encouraging all directors to attend the 30 th anniversary event and AGM
this September. Our committee members Heather Dickenson, Tricia Baratta and Lisa Skirten are working hard to make this event memorable! You will see a number of directors up for election and we hope you will take the time to either attend or fill out your proxy. If you are aware of anyone else who is interested in running, but hasn ’ t yet said anything, please submit their name. As most condominium Corporations enter budget season soon, we sought a few articles relating to finances and inflation. As they say, Timing is everything. We ’ re excited to have our first of hopefully many Condo Brag shorts in this edition. Residents of their condos are asked to brag about their complex in 1 - 2 paragraphs with a photo (or 2) and submit to our administrator, Trish Kaplan via email. It ’ s a good time to photograph the glory of summer in your property. Tell us about it, Janet! We, at CCI - London and Area Chapter would also like to brag about this great organization! We are currently in the best financial position we have been since our inception, thanks to your membership and attendance at our annual golf tournament. We have ushered in many changes this year, to add to those from previous years, and this has helped us become more efficient and more effective.
Next CCI Review Deadline November 1 st , 2022
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London and Area Chapter Board of Directors 2021/2022
President Jennifer Dickenson, BS C (H ONS ) RCM, LCCI
Past-President Stefan Nespoli, B.A.S C ., P. E NG
We are so grateful to all the writers in this and every edition of our CCI Review. We hope the information herein is helpful to you and your community. You are always welcome to inspire us with any topic you have an interest in as it pertains to challenges that may arise in your community. Not a writer ? No problem! We can work with you. We ’ re listening for your comments and suggestions with the Administrator at ccisw@cci - sw.on.ca.
Vice President Tricia Baratta, R.I.B. (O NT )
Treasurer Michael Watson, CPA, CA, LPA
Secretary Kristi Sargeant-Kerr, LL.B.
Directors Heather Dickenson, BA (Hons), CSC, RCM Chris DiPietro, R.I.B. (O NT ) Tony DiPietro Séan Eglinton, ACCI, LCCI David Leff Laura Gurr, J.D. Lisa Skirten
BEFORE YOU GO ANY FURTHER...
The information and opinions contained in this publication are brief summaries of complex topics provided by the authors. The Chapter is without liability whatsoever. Readers should always obtain expert advice on their specific situations. For membership and/or advertising information, visit our website or contact the Administrator directly. Advertisements in this publication do not reflect an endorsement by CCI of any company or product. Members are encouraged to compare rates and ask for references when contracting for goods and services. Permission to reprint is hereby granted provided: 1.Notice is given to the CCI - London & Area Chapter in writing to ccisw@cci - sw.on.ca; and 2.Proper credit is given as follows: “ Reprinted from the CCI Review London & Area Chapter, [Year: Issue] All rights reserved ”, and; Articles must be copied in their entirety.
Administrator Trish Kaplan, CCI (H ON ’ S ) National Representative Tony DiPietro Editor Trish Kaplan, CCI (H ON ’ S )
Layout Design Jennifer Dickenson, BS C (H ONS ) RCM, LCCI
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 51022
1593 Adelaide Street N. London, ON N5X 4P9 Tel: 519-453-0672
The newsletter is quarterly. The issues are available online only; however, it would be a tremendous help if the contact person from member corporations would ensure that our Administrator is provided an updated Board of Direc- tors ’ listing, along with their mailing particulars, whenever there is a change and certainly prior to each mailing—no later than the first day of August, November, March, and May (subject to change). Please email or write the Administrator with this information. You can cc your manager to let them know that you have carried out the task. Managers will be grateful for your assist. Complete the form with changes and email.: https://ccilondon.ca/sites/default/uploads/files/Membership - CHANGE - Form - fillable.pdf
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.ccilondon.ca
Note: The address is a postal outlet/mailbox only. Please contact the Administrator by email where delivery must be arranged
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NEW You are invited to be the next Condominium Corporation to BRAG
I would like to thank Trish Kaplan for her efforts in continuing to adapt to the changes and decisions the Board makes at each meeting. For someone who has been with CCI - London and Area for decades, she still shows as much dedication as she ever did. Life in the condo world can be stressful, but with CCI ’ s help, we hope it is a little less so.
Jennifer Dickenson, OLCM, RCM, LCCI President
New this year, CCI-London and Area Chapter is starting a social media campaign where directors may “Brag” about their Community and what makes it the place you like to live. Please share 1-2 paragraphs with 1-2 photos.
See our first BRAG elsewhere in this issue.
Will you be NEXT?
November 1 st is the submission date. Send your BRAG to the Administrator via email at email@example.com.
REMEMBERING OUR FRIEND AND COLLEAGUE DONALD J. PETER November 12, 1940 - July 3, 2022
Many of us will remember with fondness and definitely a smile our friend and colleague Don Peter or “ Donny P ” as he was often referred to. He gained many accolades in communities - at - large that he lived and worked in during his lifetime. Don was very well liked and respected for his professionalism, knowledge and more importantly, his kindness. It was a joy to be in his company. Many of us will remember Don for the many hats he wore here in London and especially the one that was firmly on his head for the CCI London and Area Chapter. He was involved in condominiums for many years and had perspectives as an owner, director, insurance professional and educator. Many of us will remember Don ’ s his camaraderie, jokes and story - telling. There was always laughter when you were in Don ’ s company. Many of us will remember Don ’ s commitment to CCI. He was elected to the chapter board in 2001, served as President from 2004 to 2007 and was on most of the committees during his service. After he took his leave as a director of our local board in 2014 he continued his affiliation with CCI as
our National Representative and provided his expertise at the National level. In 2013,
Don was awarded the CCI - N Distinguished Service Award, a most deserved accolade to the contributions he made to CCI over the years. He remained in the position of National Representative to our Chapter until he really retired (if there was such a thing for him) in October 2017. He then turned to travelling. He was a true testament to a busy retiree, the existential “ schmoozer ” who continued to promote condominium education to all points in Canada and the USA where he traveled, met and befriended many condominium owners from across this nation. We often heard from them when they returned home to London.
Rest in peace, Don, until we meet again.. We share our sincere condolences with family and friends from near and far.
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Chapter Communiqué b y Trish Kaplan, CCI (Hon ’ s)
This issue of the CCI Review marks the 1 st edition for the 2022/2023 fiscal year, our 30 th year in providing education to owners, volunteer directors and virtually all those who work in the condominium industry in our area and networking opportunities between professional and business partner members and condominium corporation boards and managers. Once upon a time, long ago, locals seeking education and networking opportunities with other condominium types were forced to travel to Toronto to attend offerings by CCI - Toronto and the Association of Condominium Managers of Ontario (ACMO). Years of working in the condominium industry without particularly strong legislation in a rapidly growing industry brought about changes relatively slowly; but that didn ’ t deter the many who worked so earnestly with governments over years to achieve the legislation that continues to develop with the expert assistance of those in the industry and who are committed to making it better in every way possible for owners, directors and those who provide services. There have been kinks along the way and will be some in the future. The collaboration that is happening across the nation will be valuable. CCI - National turns 40 Now CCI - National forges ahead into their 40 th year with 17 chapters across the nation and plans are in motion to celebrate that accomplishment at the National Leaders ’ Forum and Conference, November 23 - 25, 2022. It will be an in - person event in Kingston, Ontario. As more information is available, it will be posted here: https://cci.ca/ events/2022/11/23/national - leadership - forum - conference CCI - London and Area Chapter turns 30 We have come a very long way too – during these 30 years. Those who were the leaders in our community in the early days deserve our genuine appreciation for their amazing planning, patience and accomplishments. They continue to support our industry in many ways. The changes have been dramatic. CCI has been there at every turn to help everyone adapt and understand not only the legislation, but also the responsibilities that go in hand. They resulted in overwhelming workloads for boards and for managers, as well as for others in the community. Now too, there are areas that none of us have any control of, that create issues for all of us. Patience, kindness, cooperation and teamwork will help guide us through the rough patches. We ’ ve been so fortunate to have enthusiastic, generous and proficient volunteers in the leadership of CCI over the years. Some have remained so dedicated to the industry, that they continue to share their expertise and we can all be very grateful to them. We hope you will continue to be with us through this journey. Recently, a new member responded “ Everyone knows CCI!!:) ” to the question “ WHERE or WHO shared CCI with you? ” on the Annual Membership form. What a gratifying message to hear! It may be true that everyone in the industry has heard of CCI, but is everyone taking advantage of the benefits we offer to better our communities and to create a safe and desirable property, or to better connect and profile companies who may already or may wish to provide goods and services in our communities? There is still so much that condominium owners and boards do not know about how to protect their investments. Every day we learn something new and we care that they must be shared. CCI will continue to forge ahead with resources to learn, understand and to provide tools to use as the industry grows so rapidly. The Condominium Act The Ministry of Government and Consumer Services (MGDCS) is responsible for the Condominium Act, 1998 . We should all be aware of the significant reforms made to the Condominium Act, 1998 , including the Protecting Condominium Owners Act, 2015 and the Condominium Management Services Act, 2015 (CMSA). The legislative bodies, the Condominium Authority of Ontario (CAO) was established to improve condominium living by providing services and resources for condominium owners. The Condominium Authority Tribunal (CAT), an online tribunal is dedicated to resolving and deciding condominium - related disputes in Ontario where their jurisdiction has expanded. Separately, the Condominium Management Regulatory Authority of Ontario (CMRAO) was established to provide stronger consumer protection for Ontarians living and investing in condominium; strengthen the condominium management profession and help protect consumers in Ontario ’ s complex and rapidly growing condominium sector. It is a regulatory body that sets standards and enforces the mandatory licensing of condominium managers and condominium management provider businesses.
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Appreciation We continue to be grateful everyday to the managers/boards who have carried out membership renewals; for the neighbourly calls from directors; for the amazing response from our Professional and Business Partner membership who have been so faithful with their support at our golf tournament, advertising in our publications, and sponsoring of our events. Kudos to all of the amazing writers who so quickly responded to an invitation, or actually volunteered, to provide articles relating to their expertise for this issue, especially during what is a very busy time in every facet of condominiums. It is especially pleasing to have our newer members take pen to paper or fingers to keyboards to share information that may address some of the matters that we grapple with. We can be most appreciative of their enthusiasm and interest in our community. Stories to tell – we appreciate your sharing We all have awesome responsibilities to share in our communities and in the industry and we also have stories to tell about accomplishments that are worth sharing. The article, Risk Management in a HighRise , by the Board of Directors of MSCC #692 is shining evidence of a Condominium Board who worked so diligently to overcome an alarming insurance claim history. Their success can be duplicated although it will take teamwork and some heavy lifting. Other articles within these pages may address some of your issues and ease the load you are carrying in your communities. The storm alarms The storms that Mother Nature has been sharing these past months have been alarming. They come up fast and furious and the potential damage is uppermost in our minds. The ravages of storms can indicate where we might concentrate maintenance resources in our communities for safety and risk management. Vigilance during any type of storm is essential. In person or online – that is the question We continue to be cautiously optimistic about getting back to some kind of normal in the fall. COVID - 19 lingers and we hear of more infections in our community. Many members continue to take every precaution possible to remain healthy. The venue we have used for so many years – the Mocha Shrine Centre – is no longer available as they currently don ’ t have catering services. We are forever grateful for the many years of superb service that Dimitri and Helen gave us. They looked after us so well! Their friendship made going to the Mocha such an enjoyable one. We wish them only the very best in good health during the next chapter of their lives. We are looking for a new venue that will accommodate us for any events we might choose to have in person. As we progress through the remaining months of good weather (hopefully), do find time to enjoy your family and friends. Be well and be safe, always. ■
COMPLIMENTARY ACMO CM MAGAZINE
Please do not send address or contact
person changes to the National Office of CCI or to the Association of Condominium Managers of Ontario (ACMO) for the quarterly Condominium MANAGER (CM) magazine. Please contact the CCI Administrator by email at firstname.lastname@example.org with any and all contact information changes for this mailing. Allow 6 weeks for change to occur.
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Welcome New Members!
CCI MEMBERSHIP Annual July 1 — June 30 CCI welcomes all persons and businesses with interests in the condo community to their membership. The national organization, along with 17 chapters across Canada, continue to educate, to offer professional assistance, to improve legislation affecting condo and to develop standards of competence on behalf of the condo industry and its residents.
We are always so pleased to welcome new members to our CCI family. The continuing growth in condominium development demonstrates the genuine need for expansion in education and in professions that can provide goods and services to strengthen our communities. Building and Supporting Businesses Managers often have preferred suppliers and trades who provide exceptional services. Growth in this industry can be bolstered by the expanding condominium community. CCI is an excellent connection and resource to profile their expertise and build their businesses. We all need to support our local companies, just as they support our communities in so many ways, including the services they provide. It is important they remain in business and continue to provide the valuable services they do, right here in our own city. As new members join us, updates to the online Professional Service and Business Partner Listing, will be made. Please visit it for contact information and updates for new and returning businesses. Changes to the listing should be referred to the Administrator at ccisw@cci - sw.on.ca.
This group includes all those individuals who earn a portion or all of their income from providing professional services to the condo industry. i.e., . lawyers, accountants, engineers, condo managers, real estate agents or brokers, appraisers, insurance brokers, etc.
Business Partner Membership
Any corporation (other than one that would qualify for condo or professional membership), partnership, sole proprietorship, government agency, investment firm, lending institution, advertising company, or other business entity involved in the condo industry. Each business designates a "member representative" to cast their vote and receive information from CCI.
Sherry Miller, RCM, OLCM, M.F. Arnsby Property Management Ltd. Jason Shaw, RCM, OLCM M.F. Arnsby Property Management Ltd. Vince Londini, B.A., B.Sc., MBA, AIC Candidate, Otto & Company Marcia Beaton, Realtor Broker, Revel Realty - London Jeffrey Runnalls, CPA, CA, RDBA, Lambda Financial Consulting Inc.
Business Partner Members
Security Guard Group Limited, Hofsep Yousef, Director of Operations
Condo Corporation Membership
This membership category is open to all Condo Corporations. Each Corporation designates a person to be their "member representative" to receive all notices and communications from CCI. That person can also vote on behalf of the Corporation.
Condominium Corporation Members
London Condominium Corporation No. 40 Middlesex Vacant Land Condominium Corporation No. 884
Persons who have an interest in the condo community can become individual members. This group of members includes condo owners, authors, and professors.
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BRAG Shorts—Introducing MCC No. 89
Thanks to the members of Middlesex Condominium Corporation No. 89 for accepting the challenge to introduce and be the first BRAG short about their property. 93 Pine Valley Gate
Called Westmount Woods, this 52 one floor Unit complex was built by Sifton in 1985 and incorporated in 1987. It sits on the corner of Wonderland Road South. and Pine Valley Gate. There are 7/4 - unit structures and 8/3 - unit structures that form a road circle around the complex. There are large open green areas between the unit sections with the property having over 200 trees of various species. Previously a self - managed complex, in 2018 we hired a property management company to assist the Board of Directors in running this Corporation. During the past 35 years, we have had a volunteer Social committee active in promoting a “ Community ” feeling with a summer get - together for the owners within our complex. Many owners take satisfaction in their units by creating beautiful gardens and exciting outside Christmas decorations which exemplifies the unity and pride within our complex. 93 Pine Valley Gate is a very nice place to live.
History with CCI
The Westmount Woods ’ history with CCI began 28 years ago (1994) when they were a self - managed condominium community. Over the years their owners/directors continued to be dedicated to learning. They shared their time to attend seminars and courses to be educated in the duties they assumed on behalf of their owners and the property. In fact, reviewing board listings over the years, it is clear that some of the owners who had such a strong commitment to their homes and communities have remained steadfast, as some of their names continue to appear or are returned as members of the board.
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Leader of the Canadian Condominium Institute
CCI ’ s new designation, as of July 1 st , 2021, recognizes its members from any profession or trade who have and continue to contribute knowledge and expertise to CCI and the condominium industry. We invite professional and business partner members to apply.
To apply, please visit the website.
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Director Training and the Importance of CCI
The New CAO Advanced Director Training Modules The Condominium Authority of Ontario (CAO) recently announced that in addition to its existing mandatory Director Training Modules, it is now offering optional Advanced Director Training Modules. The original modules must be completed by condominium board members within six months of being appointed, elected, or re - elected, and cover six topics related to the legal framework, leadership, and financial management of condominiums. These modules take between three and six hours to complete and must be completed before the new advanced modules can be accessed. The new advanced modules cover an additional six topics that take a closer look at condominium governance, emergency planning, finances, and management. Both the mandated modules and the advanced modules are self - guided and are designed to be completed independently. While these modules are an important tool for condominium board members, it is our respectful opinion that they fall short when it comes to the interaction, feedback, and individual solutions that you will need to be an effective and capable board member. 30 Years of CCI Research and Education The London and Area Chapter of the Canadian Condominium Institute (“ CCI ”) was formed in 1992 and is celebrating thirty years of supporting condominium communities as part of the only national association to “ serve as a clearing house and research centre on condominium issues ” by providing information and education through workshops, conferences, and online resources. Every year, our Chapter holds almost monthly educational seminars on wide ranging topics specific to condominiums, including legislative updates, enforcement of the Act and governing documents, human rights and accommodation, reserve fund studies, financial management, working with condominium managers, insurance, fire safety, pest control, and our well - known “ No Stupid Legal Questions. ” In addition, our Chapter publishes a quarterly “ CCI Review ” newsletter that gives insight on condominiums, addresses common issues in condominiums, and discusses recent condominium decisions from the Courts and the Condominium Authority Tribunal (the “ CAT ”). And we cannot overlook our annual golf tournament where education may not be the focus but fun and condominium community building certainly is!
Kristi Sargeant-Kerr specializes in all aspects of condominium and real estate law, including development, management and litigation as well as the purchase, sale and mortgaging of condominiums. She has extensive experience working with property managers and condominium corporations in the region and prides herself on finding reasonable solutions to their complex issues. Kristi is on the Board of Directors of the CCI-London and Area Chapter and is Co-Chair of their Education Committee. She has also been appointed to the Advisory Committee of the Condominium Management Regulatory Authority of Ontario (CMRAO).
The 5 Reasons to Attend CCI Seminars
Considering the CAO ’ s new Advanced Director Training Modules, why should board members continue to utilize CCI seminars as educational resources? Ultimately, CCI seminars supplement and enhance these modules by connecting our local condominium communities and professionals in live settings to create stronger condominium communities. Here are our top five reasons why we think you should attend the next London Chapter CCI seminar: 1. Networking Seminars hosted by the London and Area Chapter of CCI create a unique opportunity to connect with and learn from other condominium owners, directors, managers, and professionals from the London and area region, and to benefit from their collective experience and knowledge. 2. Local Issues The best way to learn about issues affecting condominiums in your local community is to connect with your local chapter of CCI where those presenting
Madeleine Stirland joined Scott Petrie LLP in 2020 after completing her Master of Museum Studies degree and working as a museum professional in London and Toronto. She will complete her Paralegal studies in November of 2022 and is looking forward to continuing to work with Kristi on condominium matters, particularly enforcement matters and those before the Condominium Authority Tribunal.
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share unique insights on topics that are of particular concern to condominium communities in Southwestern Ontario and can provide resources and guidance on how to address these topics.
3. The Latest Case Law In addition to addressing the extensive amendments to the Condominium Act that have come into force since 2017 as well as those that remain pending, CCI seminars often address the evolving and up - to - date decisions coming out of the Courts and the CAT and their wide - ranging impacts on condominium administration, management and living. 4. Community Building Condominiums are, at their heart, communities. By attending CCI seminars with other members of your condominium corporation, you can build a strong sense of community and citizenship within your corporation by learning and improving together. 5. Supporting CCI ’ s Mission The CCI seeks to provide education, information, awareness, and access to expertise by and for its members. By attending CCI seminars, you are supporting this mission and benefitting from the expansive resources created and compiled by the CCI. On behalf of the Education Committee and the Board of Directors of the London and Area Chapter of CCI, we look forward to seeing you at every event we organize for your benefit. As we celebrate this 30 th anniversary of the chapter, we applaud all of you who have shared your support and participation in any way with us. Thank you! ■
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Top Six Fire Safety Tips
The Ontario Fire Code (under the Fire Protection and Prevention Act, 1997 ), sets out minimum requirements for fire safety in buildings and facilities, including condos. Unless specified otherwise, the Fire Code considers the “ owner ” to be the condo corporation, who is responsible for carrying out its provisions.
Here are 6 tips to help owners, Boards and Managers keep their condos safe:
HIGH - RISE BUILDINGS:
1) KEEP YOUR FIRE PLAN UPDATED
Condos with more than 10 people must have a fire safety plan that is approved by the Chief Fire Official. It is important to review your plan annually. Be sure to include any changes to staff, renovations (completed or ongoing), upgrades to the building components and changes to the list of residents who will need assistance in an emergency. A note on Chubb Box security: Property Managers are all - too aware of the recent uptick in broken Chubb boxes and stolen building keys. The Fire Department does not require keys to be stored in these boxes. If you are in an area of high crime or experiencing this issue, you may wish to have the keys removed – just be sure that you have an on - site key holder who can grant immediate access to the Fire Department, if you choose to go this route.
Heather Dickenson, RCM , OLCM returned to London in 2017 to pursue a career in property management at Dickenson Condo Management. She became a professional member of the CCI — London and Area Chapter in 2019 and was elected to the Board of Directors at the AGM of 2021. She currently serves on the Education Committee.
2) COMMUNICATE WITH RESIDENTS
Sharing your Fire Plan with residents on an annual basis will help educate them on how to proceed in the event of a fire. It is a good idea to share the communication prior to the annual fire drill, so there are no surprises when that bell goes off! Be sure to have annual fire drills and inform residents of the “ Meeting Location ” outside of the building. 3) ENCOURAGE RESIDENTS TO KEEP A ‘ HIGH - RISE SURVIVAL KIT ’ IN THEIR UNITS Toronto Fire Services recommends that tenants keep a ‘ survival kit ’ readily available if they become trapped during a fire. The following items can be purchased for under $50 and may increase your changes or surviving a fire:
Wet towel – place at the base of a door.
Duct tape – tape over door and vent openings.
Whistle – use to signal for help.
Flashlight – use in case of power failure, smoke or to signal for help.
Bright - coloured cloth – hang up in a window or balcony, to identify your location.
Cotton bedsheet – if smoke is heavy in your room, soak the bedsheet with water and make a tent near an open window. Wash cloth – place the wet cloth over your mouth and nose to aid breathing in smoke - filled areas. For a comprehensive list of survival kit items , visit: https://www.toronto.ca/ community - people/public - safety - alerts/safety - tips - prevention/home - high - rise - school - workplace - safety/high - rise - fire - safety/
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and older children on the location of First Aid kits and exits in your home.
TOWNHOUSES AND VACANT LAND PROPERTIES:
4) SMOKE AND CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTORS
6) CHECK YOUR FIRE EXTINGUISHERS REGULARLY
By law, smoke detectors must be installed on each floor of your home. Carbon Monoxide alarms must be installed outside of each bedroom, in homes that have fuel - burning appliances (think: water heater, stove, gas - powered equipment in the garage). It is best practice to check these on a monthly basis and to get into the habit of changing the batteries each time you change your clocks back (March and November). A note on fire safety equipment: unless otherwise specified, the owner of the unit is responsible for ensuring all fire equipment is functional. Any fines levied as a result of expired or missing fire safety equipment will be applied to the owner of the unit, regardless of whether or not they reside at that address.
Fire experts recommend picking up and shaking your extinguishers each month, to loosen up the chemicals. If you have not done this in a while (or ever), tapping the extinguisher with a rubber mallet can aid in this process. Keep an eye on the needle at the top – it should be straight up - and - down. If it is slightly off in either direction, it is time for a shake! Pay attention to the expiry labels and the type of extinguisher you have (some are specific to ordinary combustibles like wood and paper, others are used for flammable liquids like grease, gasoline, and oil). There are 4 classes (A through D) with some that fit into multiple categories, so it is important to make sure you have at least one on every level of your house, with appropriate coverage. In summary – there are many great resources out there on how to practice fire safety in high - rise and townhouse complexes. Residents, owners, Directors and Managers should all make sure they are doing their part to keep their condos safe. CCI has many resources that speak to fire safety and Fire Code changes – for more information, please contact your local chapter via email at ccisw@!cci - sw.on.ca ■
5) IDENTIFY ADDITIONAL EXITS IN YOUR HOME
Be aware of other exits in your home, aside from the main entry door. Share this with others who live in or visit your home – very seldom will everyone be able to escape through the front door, in an emergency. Fire Safety experts also recommend having a ladder on each above - ground floor, which can be retracted to the ground if access to the main floor is blocked. Be sure to educate all adults
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Inflation is Coming for You
Lyndsey McNally is Director, Originations at CWB Maxium Financial.. She joined the CWB team in 2020 with an extensive background in the condominium sector, having worked with condominium corporations in the GTA since 2022. Lyndsey is a licensed condominium manager and in 2017 was selected as property manager of the year by the Association of Condominium Managers of Ontario (ACMO). Lyndsey works exclusively with condominium corporations, property managers and other condominium stakeholders to develop and implement customized financial solutions.
The table above has condos sounding the alarm bells! It reflects the StatsCan Residential Construction Price Index from 2020 to the end of first - quarter 2022, and indicates that in just over two years, the average construction inflation rate for the eleven census metropolitan areas was a staggering 36%. Our current economic environment is difficult as we come towards the end of the COVID19 pandemic, throughout which we ’ ve seen real estate bidding wars, long periods of low interest rates, and a suffering supply chain. In the news, we hear a lot about the Consumer Price Index increasing the cost of living. We are all feeling this in the price of gas, groceries, and daily cost of living. The Consumer Price Index for same period shown above was 22.4%. This general cost of living increase will surely impact condo fees, but the Construction Price Index long - term will have a greater impact as this affects the capital repair plans for condominium corporations, particularly the need to increase contributions to the Reserve Fund to support projects now that they are becoming more and more expensive. Keep in mind that it ’ s not just our projects today that are impacted, but also cost uncertainty for future projects must be accounted for. How does this affect our projects today? Reserve Fund Planners in Ontario typically assume a long - term inflation rate of 2 - 3%. If your condominium corporation is executing a major repair project this year, it has inflated faster than your Reserve Fund contributions have increased to support the costs.
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When the current rate of inflation is applied to your capital projects, you will very likely experience a shortfall in the Reserve Fund. Even if you do have the cash today to support the current project, you may be borrowing from funds
earmarked for other projects to cover the increased cost
Add the greatly increased cost of completing major repairs and replacement, to the current state of Reserve Funds in the Province of Ontario; a market is already in financial crisis. In 2020, Ontario's Auditor General suggested that 69% of condo built between 1980 and 2000 do not have enough funds in the Reserve Fund. The tables above show that the condos they surveyed need to increase condo fees by an average of 50% to meet their long - term capital repair obligations. Because the majority of condos do not have enough money in the Reserve Fund, we ’ re playing catch - up in the maintenance and repair of our property. This was already the case even BEFORE inflation came for us. The reality is that the projects you're doing this year, after experiencing just two years of inflation, can be almost 40% more than you had anticipated and saved for . When we're dealing with projects in the millions of dollars the impact is substantial. To put this into simple terms. A project that cost $1,000,000 at the end of 2019 now costs $1,400,000. As a lender for condominium corporations, I see the impact of this everyday. If your corporation is struggling, you ’ re not alone.
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Condos have very few options to recover from these shortfalls, as the owners are the only major source of revenue. The following three items are the only ways for a condo to generate income to make up for the shortfall: Special Assessment – • Special Assessment – can be a good option, but only if your owners can afford it. Owners have to pay a special assessment either using personal revenue or to leverage the equity in their homes.
• Condo Fee Increases – may not be able to raise funds fast enough for projects that need to be completed now and could bring condo fees to a level that isn't attractive to potential buyers, therefore impacting property values.
• Loan – there are a number of ways that loans can be structured to minimize the financial burden on the owners today. Loans allow fees to increase more gradually, and less than would be required to accelerate contributions related to a specific project. There are other benefits, such as eliminating the need to phase projects due to cash flow – eliminating mobilization costs associated with phasing, as well as inflationary pressures on future phases of the project. In order to borrow funds, strategic planning is necessary as well as robust communication to the owners in the condominium corporation (majority approval is required to pass a borrowing bylaw). How does this affect us into the future? The market hasn ’ t yet seen the full impact of the recent construction inflation. Condominium corporations executing major projects in 2021 & 2022 have seen a preview, but many condos are still working on reserve fund studies that were completed in 2019 & 2020, before the inflationary pressures really kicked off. Reserve Fund Studies (RFS) need to be completed once every 3 years, so as we approach the end of 2022 and get through 2023, cost adjustments will be applied to these “ older ” studies. Let ’ s look at a condominium corporation that is “ adequately funded ”. The example we ’ ll use is a pretty standard high rise; 40 years old with 174 units. Their RFS was completed in 2019. Their current RFS has a positive outlook, and the corporation is currently using inflation matched increases. They have some big projects coming up: $1,000,000 in 2025/2026 for mechanical equipment, $2,500,000 in 2027/2028/2029 for windows and patio doors, and $2,000,000 in 2031 for underground garage repairs. If we adjust their RFS to reflect a 10% increase in 2020, and 35% in 2021 (with the inflated pricing retained on projects thereafter) but make no other adjustments, the corporation suddenly has a large shortfall for these projects of $2,700,000 or ~$15,500 per unit. This gets worse over time. If the corporation doesn ’ t make adjustments to its funding model, the shortfall over time becomes $7,400,000 or $42,529 per unit. This isn ’ t a stand - alone horror story. This is a condominium corporation that had every reason to believe that they were fully funded. They weren ’ t behind, they didn ’ t defer, inflation came for them. What do we do? The first important point that needs to be made: Don ’ t defer because your corporation can ’ t afford a project. Deferring only costs the owners of the corporation more in the long run (because of inflation and ongoing costs to maintain failing components) and can harm your property values if your building deteriorates. Instead, look thoughtfully at all the available funding options. Model what will happen to the condo fees in each scenario. I can assure you – the outlook for condo fees will not be better if you defer/delay. Many corporations will decide to defer projects without taking this important due diligence step. Condominium corporations also need to start preparing to top - up their Reserve Funds. You can start today does the corporation have excess operating surplus to make a special contribution to Reserve? It could even be prudent to have a financial update of your RFS completed so you can start increasing regular contributions sooner (if you know you ’ ll have a shortfall, it ’ s never too early to start addressing it). Boards and Managers will also need to prepare to educate Owners about the long - term financial plan for the corporation and the need to increase condo fees. This is never a popular conversation, but one we will be having often in the next few years. Perhaps the measures the Bank of Canada is implementing with rate increases to slow inflation will have an impact, but it is unlikely to correct to the point where we were in 2019. ■
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Managing Different Culinary Smells in Shared Living Spaces
Managers of condominium buildings have many aspects of their residents ’ lives to consider and accommodate. With most communities becoming more multicultural, this diversity makes shared living communities more interesting and vibrant. However, sometimes it can also lead to increased concerns from residents as they adjust to customs and cultures they may not be as familiar with. Culinary smells are one topic that managers of condos find themselves dealing with. Many cultures cook with an array of delicious spices and ingredients that are not as common in Western style cooking. The smells produced may therefore be less familiar to some residents as they waft down the hallways. Learning to adjust to different culinary smells is just one way of gaining deeper intercultural competence. By learning to live in diverse spaces and adopt a culture of inclusivity, all residents must learn to understand and accept all differences including varying culinary smells.
The London & Middlesex Local Immigration Partnership (LMLIP) is designed to help newcomers to Canada integrate in our community. In addition, LMLIP works with various stakeholders , including community groups, organizations, and the three levels of government to address issues that prevent successful integration of immigrants in all aspects of life.
Some ways that shared living communities can become more tolerant of different styles of cooking, and even learn to enjoy them include:
• Hosting monthly potlucks where residents bring a food from their culture. Sharing food together is a great way for residents to meet new people, learn about different backgrounds, try new delicious foods and understand the types of ingredients that contribute to different tastes and smells. • Share resources on intercultural competency. Becoming more interculturally competent is key for living in increasingly multicultural communities. By ensuring that residents of a community are more interculturally competent, there will naturally be less concerns arising about things that are viewed as “ out of the ordinary ” as all residents will be better informed and sensitive to the ways diversity is expressed in their shared living spaces. The important thing to remember is that culture is reflected through so many different things: art, music, dress, values and cuisine! By understanding that cuisine is just one way through which people express themselves, residents can become more open to different smells as they work to make all members of their community feel welcomed! Who knows, by opening your mind to being more interculturally competent you may also be able to open your mouth for some delicious eats!
Carly MacArthur | Communication Officer London & Middlesex Local Immigration Partnership CMacArthur@lmlip.ca
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CCI Publications Are Digital
The publications are now provided to you digitally on our website.
UPCOMING NATIONAL EVENTS
Overall, the advantages are positive, as is the feedback. We share a small part in saving the world and affecting climate change; we are not restricted by the number of pages and can enhance the productions with colour. CCI Review This is our quarterly publication where the expertise of our professional and business partner members continues to be most constructive. We are most grateful to them for sharing with us. We also thank them for their generous support by advertising. We hope you will continue to share the publications with colleagues and other owners in your condominium corporation. Your industry - related articles are welcome to our publications. Please contact the Administrator (ccisw@cci - sw.on.ca) if you would like to share your expertise in an upcoming issue.
The upcoming National events, along with events across Canada, may be of interest to you. You might want to put reminders on your calendars now to check for updates as the days draw near to register. https://cci.ca/events/ upcoming - events
For upcoming events across the Nation, visit the CCI - National website https://cci.ca/
You can find this and previous issues of the CCI Review here
Professional & Trades Directory Every corporation and owner has opportunities when they require knowledgeable professionals and trades. We invite you to share access to the publication of our members within your communities. The directory is available online here . Listings will be updated as memberships are added and changes are received. Event Presentation Archives Time can be illusive but learning is important. At the same time, technology isn ’ t perfect and we continue to learn and/or find those whose expertise could ensure the benefits of CCI are shared. If you have missed a local webinar, you can have a review on the recordings on our website where they have been archived here . Social Media
Check us out and feel free to reach out and tell us how we can help you. All of our social media channels say CCILondonandArea,
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CAT Case: The Importance of Pleadings
Pet CAT cases, especially those about the CAT and dogs, are an all - too - common topic of discussion amongst condo lawyers. I ’ ll spoil it now: Decoste v Halton Condominium Corporation No. 134 , 2022 ONCAT 51 (“ Decoste ”) is another pet CAT case, but it is more concerned with pleadings than pets. The facts of Decoste are unfortunate. The applicant, Ms. Decoste, is an owner in Halton Condominium Corporation No. 134 (“ HCC 134”) and wanted to buy a dog. She made this decision when HCC 134’ s rules allowed dogs in the building provided they were smaller than twenty pounds, and found a breeder of Dachshunds in Manitoba in November 2021. Ms. Decoste proceeded to put a deposit on that dog in her browser window, and in early December of 2021 arranged a flight to Manitoba to pick up her pup in June of 2022. In late December of 2021, ostensibly in response to ongoing compliance issues with dogs in the building, HCC 134 passed a rule prohibiting all dogs from the building. The rule contained a “ legacy exemption ” that could apply to “ dogs reported and kept in the building before February 1, 2022.” The Board sent out a Notice to all owners regarding the puppy prohibition and informed them of their right to requisition a meeting to vote on the rule. In short, HCC 134 met its procedural obligations. Instead of requisitioning a meeting, Ms. Decoste tried to negotiate her way into a legacy exemption. This culminated in a meeting on January 31, 2022 between the parties – the last possible day for a dog to be granted a legacy exemption per the new rule. HCC 134 declined to grant Ms. Decoste an exemption, and Ms. Decoste asked the CAT to order HCC 134 to grant her one. The CAT dismissed Ms. Decoste ’ s application without costs for either party. Ms. Decoste did not challenge the reasonableness of the no dog rule, nor did she attempt to requisition a meeting regarding a vote on the rule. Instead, she took the path of least resistance and tried to cordially negotiate with HCC 134. As such, the CAT did not have occasion to address the reasonableness of the no dog rule, as “ both parties agree[d] that the rule itself [was] not in dispute. ” Instead, the CAT was tasked with interpreting whether the Board ’ s interpretation of its rule was reasonable, and, unsurprisingly, it was. HCC 134’ s interpretation of the rule accorded with its plain language, and Ms. Decoste ’ s argument that she owned her dog was moot because ownership was not referenced in the rule – possession was. As Ms. Decoste did not have her Dachshund in her unit before February 1, her new furry friend was out of the running for a legacy exemption. While the CAT ’ s decision was the correct one, it leaves a bad taste in the reader ’ s mouth. Ms. Decoste clearly tried to resolve a contentious matter amicably and failed. When she brought her grievance before the CAT, Ms. Decoste did not seek to have the rule declared unreasonable; she argued against the Board ’ s interpretation and enforcement of its rule, which, to the drafter ’ s credit, was clear and unambiguous. The CAT did not address the Board ’ s authority to make rules, or the need for rules to be reasonable, because this was not brought up in Ms. Decoste ’ s pleadings. She pursued a losing argument, and the CAT let her lose accordingly. What is the alternative, though? Few readers would fail to feel sympathy for Ms. Decoste and the Dachshund that, in all likelihood, would have had a happy home with her in HCC 134. The CAT even awarded no costs to either party in what reads like a clear show of sympathy for the disappointed Ms. Decoste. While the Condominium Act is consumer protection legislation, it does not follow that the CAT must make owners ’ legal arguments for them, or do so in effect by litigating a claim of unreasonable or ultra vires rulemaking that never was. ■
Kevin A. Kok, BA (Hons), MA, JD is an Associate Lawyer at Cohen Highley LLP. His practice focuses on administrative law,
including but not limited to landlord and tenant and
condominium matters. Prior to his call to the Bar, Kevin completed his articles at Cohen Highley, where he gained experience in a wide variety of practice areas. Kevin obtained his Bachelor of Arts from King’s University College with an Honours Specialization in Philosophy and a Minor in History in 2014, his Master of Arts in Philosophy from KU Leuven in 2016, and his Juris Doctor from Western Law in 2021. During his time in law school, he worked with the Runnymede Society, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, and the Christian Legal Fellowship. He was called to the Ontario Bar in 2022. Outside the firm, Kevin enjoys writing and playing music on bass guitar and drums and spending time with friends and family.
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