Clark Wilson

Strata FAQs

Following are some of the questions that strata councils and property managers frequently ask. Click on a question to see the answer.

Disclaimer: This FAQ section is for informational purposes only, for the convenience of our visitors. While these questions and answers are about legal issues, they are not a substitute for consultation with a lawyer, and should not be relied on as a basis for any legal decision. As with anything of a legal nature, different circumstances can create different results.

FAQs Updated: February 14, 2011

Please Note: Clark Wilson's Strata Property Group represents a large number of strata corporations and strata managers. Therefore, we are unable to respond to strata-related inquiries from individual owners. If you are a current strata council member or strata manager and would like additional information on any of these topics, please contact our Strata Property Group.

Borrowing Money

Our strata corporation has a guest suite that is shown on the strata plan as common property. May the strata corporation borrow a loan by mortgaging the guest suite?
No. The Strata Property Act prohibits a strata corporation from mortgaging common property.

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Our strata corporation has a caretaker's suite that is a strata lot. May the strata corporation borrow a loan by mortgaging the caretaker's suite?
Yes, if it is a strata lot, it is a common asset and the strata corporation may use it as collateral for a mortgage loan. However, before the strata corporation borrows a loan, the borrowing, the loan and the granting of any security, such as a mortgage, must first be approved by a 3/4 vote at an annual or special general meeting.

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Budgets

Does a strata corporation have to file an income tax return?
Yes. A strata corporation is required to file a T2 corporate income tax return for every fiscal year, even if the strata corporation does not have have to pay any income taxes. A strata corporation will also have to file a T1044 information return if any of the following conditions are met:
  • the strata corporation's rental and interest income combined exceeds $10,000 in the fiscal year;
  • the strata corporation owned assets that exceeded $200,000 at the end of the prior fiscal year; or
  • the strata corporation filed a T1044 information return in the prior fiscal year.

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What happens if the operating budget does not pass at the annual general meeting?
Section 104 requires the Strata Corporation to prepare a new budget and to hold a special general meeting within 30 days of the annual general meeting to vote on the new budget.

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At the last AGM, the strata corporation did not approve the budget for next year. Do I still have to pay strata fees? If so, how much are my strata fees?
Yes, strata fees are still due and owing. Until the new budget is approved, an owner must continue to pay to the strata corporation the same monthly strata fees that they were required to pay under the previous budget.

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Our strata corporation wants to raise the annual salary of our resident caretaker by $10,000.00. Does this require a 3/4 vote?
The annual salary of a resident caretaker is an operating fund expense and therefore, it belongs in the annual budget. The annual budget must be approved by a majority vote at the annual general meeting.

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Our strata corporation has money left over in the operating fund. May we give it back to the owners?
If funds are not required to meeting operating expenses in a fiscal year, a strata corporation may do one or more of the following:
  1. put the surplus in the contingency reserve fund;
  2. carry the surplus forward as a surplus in the operating fund;
  3. reduce the next year's strata fees.
To do anything other than the foregoing requires a 3/4 vote of the owners.

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Bylaws and Rules

At the last council meeting, the council passed a rule requiring anyone who books the common room for a private event to pay a fee of $100. Is the rule enforceable?
Although section 110 of the Strata Property Act and Strata Property Regulation 6.8 permit a strata corporation to adopt a rule to impose a user fee with respect to common property or a common asset, the rule and the fee are not enforceable until the rule has been ratified by the owners at the next annual general meeting after the rule was adopted by the council.

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Our bylaws provide that owners cannot put up any signs to advertise the sale of their strata lot. Is such a bylaw enforceable?
No. Section 122 of the Strata Property Act permits a strata corporation to pass a bylaw relating to the sale of a strata lot, including locations for the posting of signs but the bylaw cannot prohibit or unreasonably restrict the posting of such signs.

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Can a strata corporation amend the bylaws before the second annual general meeting?
As of December 2009, a strata corporation containing residential strata lots cannot amend the bylaws before the second annual general meeting without a unanimous vote resolution.

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Can a strata corporation charge interest on late strata fees?
Yes. A strata corporation can charge interest on strata fees if the strata corporation adopts a bylaw authorizing the imposition of interest on strata fees.

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Do amendments to the bylaws have to be filed in the Land Title Office?
Yes, section 128(2) provides that any amendments to the bylaws must be filed in the Land Title Office and do not have any effect until they are filed.

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Is a strata corporation subject to the Human Rights Code?
Yes. Section 121(1)(a) of the Strata Property Act specifically provides that a bylaw is not enforceable to the extent that it contravenes the Human Rights Code. In addition, the BC Human Rights Tribunal has concluded that a strata corporation's relationships with its owners, tenants, prospective purchasers and employees is subject to the Human Rights Code.

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My strata corporation has both residential and non-residential strata lots. The residential strata lots have enough votes to pass amendments to the bylaws without considering the non-residential strata lots. Can the residential strata lots pass bylaws over the objections of the non–residential strata lots?
No – Section 128(1)(c) of the Strata Property Act provides that separate 3/4 vote resolution are required of each of the residential strata lots and the non–residential strata lots in order to pass bylaw amendments.

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My strata corporation has a bylaw that prohibits open houses – is the bylaw enforceable?
No. Section 122 of the Strata Property Act states allows a strata corporation to pass a bylaw limiting the times for the holding of open houses relating to the sale of a strata lot but does not allow a strata corporation to prohibit them entirely.

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May a strata corporation prevent an owner from standing for council if the strata lot is in arrears of strata fees?
Yes, but the strata corporation must have a bylaw that states that no person may stand for council with respect to a strata lot if the strata corporation is entitled to register a lien against that strata lot. In that case, the owner may not stand for council.

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Our strata corporation has a painting that was provided by the developer as per the disclosure statement. We have had the painting appraised and found out it is worth $60,000. The strata council wants to sell it and use the money for future expenses of the strata corporation. Is this allowed?
Yes, but before the painting is sold, the strata corporation must approve the sale by a resolution passed by a 3/4 vote at an annual or special general meeting if the painting's market value is more than the amount set out in the bylaws or $1,000, if the bylaws are silent as to the amount.

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Is a bylaw enforceable if the bylaw permits hard surface flooring, but only in strata lots on the first floor of the building?
Yes. A strata corporation may adopt a bylaw that limits hard surface flooring to the strata lots on the first level where there are no residential strata lots below.

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If a rule and a bylaw conflict with each other, which one takes precedence – the bylaw or the rule?
If a bylaw and a rule conflict, the bylaw prevails.

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The council wants to levy a fine for contravention of a bylaw. What are the procedures to follow?
Before the strata corporation imposes a fine against a person for contravening a bylaw or rule, it must (1) receive a complaint; (2) give the owner (or tenant) details of the complaint in writing; and (3) provide a reasonable opportunity for the owner (or tenant) to answer the complaint. A reasonable opportunity to answer the complaint may include a hearing in front of the council, if the owner (or tenant) requests a hearing. If the person complained of is a tenant, the strata corporation must give notice of the complaint to the landlord and to the owner, if the landlord and the owner are not the same. Once the strata corporation has complied with (1), (2) and (3), it makes its decision and gives notice in writing of its decision to the person complained of. Then the strata corporation may impose a fine.

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Our strata council has received a complaint about a council member contravening a bylaw, what do we do?
If a complaint is made about a council member contravening a bylaw or rule, the council member complained of must not participate in the decision made by council about the complaint.

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Our strata corporation has never adopted any bylaws. Are we required to have bylaws?
Yes. A strata corporation must have bylaws. The Schedule of Standard Bylaws found in the Strata Property Act are the bylaws of every strata corporation, as of January 1, 2002, unless that strata corporation has repealed the Schedule of Standard Bylaws or resolved that the Schedule does not apply to their strata corporation. In that case, the strata corporation must adopt its own set of bylaws.

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Must a strata corporation file its rules in the land title office?
No, rules are not filed in the land title office. The strata council adopts new rules by a majority vote and then advises the owners of new rules, perhaps in the council meeting minutes. Rules are effective from the date that owners are notified about them. However, if new rules are not ratified by the owners at a forthcoming special or annual general meeting, the rules cease to be effective.

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Our strata corporation recently obtained all of our registered bylaws from the Land Title Office. It surprised us to find that Part 5 of the Condominium Act was registered as our bylaws in addition to a few other bylaws filed over the years. We thought that our bylaws were the Schedule of Standard Bylaws to the Strata Property Act. What does this mean?
Part 5 of the Condominium Act is the form of standard bylaws provided in that legislation. Where a strata corporation filed Part 5 as their bylaws, those bylaws continue to govern the strata corporation with the exception that any of those bylaws that are in conflict with the provisions of the Strata Property Act will be invalid and unenforceable as of January 1, 2002. In addition, the Schedule of Standard Bylaws to the Strata Property Act will also be your bylaws as of January 1, 2002 except where they conflict with any valid and enforceable bylaws already filed in the Land Title Office. Your strata corporation should review its bylaws and choose which bylaws the owners wish to carry forward and vote on a newly-revised set of bylaws. However, be sure to repeal the old bylaws to avoid any further confusion.

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May council members be paid to perform their duties?
Yes, but any remuneration paid to a strata council member for performing council duties must be approved in advance of any payment in the annual budget or in the bylaws or by a resolution passed by a 3/4 vote at an annual or special general meeting.

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A strata corporation has a bylaw that prohibits the posting of signs in a strata lot or on common property. An owner wants to put an election sign in the window of his strata lot. Does that contravene the bylaw?
No. The Canada Elections Act, in section 322, provides that no condominium corporation or any of its agents may prohibit the owner of a condominium unit from displaying election advertising posters in his or her unit. However, the condominium corporation or agent may set reasonable conditions relating to the size or type of election advertising posters that may be displayed on a strata lot or the common property and may prohibit the display of election advertising posters in common areas of the building in which the premises are located.

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A strata corporation passed a bylaw two years ago prohibiting pets. An owner wishes to sell the owner's strata lot, but the prospective buyer has a pet. Is a "no pet" bylaw enforceable?
If the "no pet" bylaw was adopted by a 3/4 vote of the owners at a properly convened general meeting and filed in the Land Title Office, it is enforceable. A strata corporation may prohibit pets. However, the bylaw will not apply to a pet living with an owner, tenant or occupant at the time the bylaw was adopted.

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What is the difference between rules and regulations? Are they not the same thing?
Under the Condominium Act, a strata corporation could make rules and regulations governing the enjoyment, safety and cleanliness of common property and common assets. Under the Strata Property Act, a strata corporation has rules, not rules and regulations. Rules govern the use, safety and condition of common property and common assets. Regulations are part of the Strata Property Act and are made by the Lieutenant Governor in Council.

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Our strata corporation has a bylaw that prohibits dogs that was passed under the Condominium Act and filed in the Land Title Office. The strata corporation never filed any new bylaws when the the Strata Property Act came in. According to the Strata Property Act, the Schedule of Standard Bylaws applies to our strata corporation, but it has a different pet bylaw. Which bylaw applies?
The original pet bylaw still applies as long as it has not been repealed since the date it was passed. The Schedule of Standard Bylaws in the Strata Property Act applies only to the extent that your strata corporation does not have an enforceable bylaw that deals with the same issue. An enforceable bylaw on the same issue, filed in the Land Title Office, will take precedence over a bylaw in the Schedule of Standard Bylaws.

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May the spouse of an owner who is not on title to a strata lot stand for council?
In order for the spouse of an owner who is not an owner to stand for council, the strata corporation must have a bylaw that permits the spouse of an owner to stand for council.

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An owner has some persons living with her that are under the age of 45. The strata corporation has a bylaw stating that all persons who occupy a strata lot must be over the age of 45. How do we enforce the bylaw?
While a strata corporation may have a bylaw that restricts persons who may occupy a strata lot to 55 and over, a bylaw that restricts occupancy to persons to aged 45 and over has been determined by the Courts to be discriminatory and therefore unenforceable.

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Our strata corporation recently filed a bylaw in the Land Title Office and the bylaw may be contrary to the Strata Property Act or any other legislation. Is it possible to file bylaws in the Land Title Office that are contrary to the Act?
Yes. The Land Title Office does not adjudicate on the enforceability of bylaws. As long as the strata corporation complies with Land Title Office requirements for filing documents, the Land Title Office will accept documents for filing. The Land Title Office does not scrutinize bylaws.

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May a strata corporation have a rule that prohibits live Christmas trees?
Rules apply to common property, not strata lots. If a strata corporation adopts a rule that bans live Christmas trees, then it is only banning them from the common property. To prohibit live Christmas trees in strata lots, a strata corporation must adopt a bylaw.

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May a strata corporation prevent an owner from voting if the strata lot is in arrears of strata fees?
Yes, but the strata corporation must have a bylaw that states that the vote for a strata lot may not be exercised if the strata corporation is entitled to register a lien. In that case, the owner may not vote.

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May a strata corporation require an owner to reside in a strata lot for one year (or another period of time) before being allowed to rent the owner's strata lot?
No. A strata corporation may, by bylaw, prohibit rentals, limit the number of strata lots that may be rented or limit the period of time that strata lots may be rented. A strata corporation may not require an owner to first reside in the owner's strata lot in order to qualify to rent the strata lot.

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Common Property

At the last council meeting, the council passed a rule requiring anyone who books the common room for a private event to pay a fee of $100. Is the rule enforceable?
Although section 110 of the Strata Property Act and Strata Property Regulation 6.8 permit a strata corporation to adopt a rule to impose a user fee with respect to common property or a common asset, the rule and the fee are not enforceable until the rule has been ratified by the owners at the next annual general meeting after the rule was adopted by the council.

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My strata corporation consists of two sections – commercial and residential. The residential section has a limited common property lobby area with furniture that is looking worn and should be replaced. Do all owners have to pay for the new furniture?
Strata Property Regulation 11.2 provides that an operating expense or special levy related to limited common property designated to a section is shared amongst only those strata lots who are entitled to the benefit of the limited common property.

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Every owner in our development has a balcony that is accessible only through a strata lot. Are these balconies common property or limited common property?
Whether a balcony is common property, limited common property or part of a strata lot is determined by a review of the strata plan or a review of any resolutions that may have been filed in the Land Title Office on the general index. A balcony is not limited common property merely because access is limited or restricted.

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The strata council has received a request from an owner for permission to use a space as storage located under some stairs adjacent to the electrical room. This is common property. May the council do that?
Yes. In some instances, the permission may also require the approval of the owners by a 3/4 vote, but generally speaking, the strata council may give an owner permission to exclusively use common property for a period of not more than one year and subject to conditions specified by the council.

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If an owner wants to install a skylight, is a 3/4 vote of the strata corporation required?
If an owner wants to install a skylight , the Schedule of Standard Bylaws would require approval from the council because a roof is common property. However, an alteration may also require a 3/4 vote, if the alteration is a significant change in the use (or appearance) of common property.

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May a strata corporation change a common property roof with access for all to a private access roof for some strata lot owners?
A strata corporation may, by 3/4 vote resolution designate common property as limited common property for the exclusive use of one or more strata lots. A strata corporation may make a significant change in the use (or appearance) of common property by a resolution passed by a 3/4 vote. Therefore, a strata corporation may, by 3/4 vote, change a common property roof to private access roof for some strata lot owners.

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Our strata corporation would like to have a resident caretaker's suite in the building. May the strata corporation buy a strata lot for this purpose?
Yes, but before entering into a contract to purchase a strata lot (which will be a common asset of the strata corporation), the purchase must be approved by a resolution passed by a 3/4 vote at a special or annual general meeting.

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My strata corporation consists of two identical buildings each with 40 residential strata lots. The furniture in the lobby of one of the buildings is looking rather worn and we would like to purchase new furniture and pay for it by a special levy. Do all strata lots pay the special levy?
Yes. Since the complex is not eligible under the Strata Property Act to have separate sections, one for each building, the strata corporation must levy on all 80 strata lots and not just the strata lots in the building getting the new furniture.

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Our strata corporation is entering into a contract to repaint the exterior of our building. The contract refers to the complex as Mountain Oaks, which is our building name. What is our strata corporation's legal name for purposes of a contract?
Pursuant to section 2 of the Strata Property Act, the owners of the strata lots in the strata plan are members of the strata corporation under the name "The Owners, Strata Plan [insert the registration number of the strata plan].

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A strata corporation has a bylaw that prohibits the posting of signs in a strata lot or on common property. An owner wants to put an election sign in the window of his strata lot. Does that contravene the bylaw?
No. The Canada Elections Act, in section 322, provides that no condominium corporation or any of its agents may prohibit the owner of a condominium unit from displaying election advertising posters in his or her unit. However, the condominium corporation or agent may set reasonable conditions relating to the size or type of election advertising posters that may be displayed on a strata lot or the common property and may prohibit the display of election advertising posters in common areas of the building in which the premises are located.

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A company that provides cell phone communications services approached the strata corporation to place a communications tower on the roof of the strata's building. Does the strata corporation need approval of the owners in order to allow this?
Yes. Pursuant to the Strata Property Act, this is a lease of common property and as such requires approval of the owner by a 3/4 vote at a general meeting.

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An owner is in arrears of strata fees and the strata corporation is responsible for repairing certain damage inside the owner's strata lot. May the strata corporation delay repairing the damage in the owner's unit until the owner pays the arrears?
No. A strata corporation has a duty under the Strata Property Act to repair and maintain common property and any damage that results from its failure to repair and maintain common property. An owner must pay strata fees. However, the strata corporation may use other remedies in the Act to collect strata arrears.

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Contingency Reserve Fund

When an owner sells a strata lot, does the seller get a return of any funds from the contingency reserve fund?
No. On the sale of a strata lot, the seller is not entitled to any return of contributions to the contingency reserve fund.

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The strata corporation has a significant amount in the contingency reserve fund. An owner who is selling their strata lots has requested a return of the owner's proportionate share of the contingency reserve fund. Is the strata corporation required to do this?
No. On the sale of a strata lot, the seller is not entitled to a return of contributions to the contingency reserve fund.

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May the council approve an expenditure from the contingency reserve fund without asking the owners?
No, an expenditure from the contingency reserve fund first must be approved by resolution passed by a 3/4 vote at an annual or special general meeting, with the exception of an emergency. An emergency entails the need to ensure safety or prevent significant loss or damage.

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Our council wants to pass a resolution by 3/4 vote at a general meeting to allow strata council to spend small amounts up to a total of $5,000.00 from the contingency reserve fund without obtaining the owners' approval for each expenditure. Can the council do this?
There is no provision in the Strata Property Act to authorize future expenditures from the contingency reserve fund up to a maximum amount. Each expenditure from the contingency reserve fund must:
  1. be first approved by a resolution passed by a 3/4 vote at an annual or special general meeting; or
  2. be for an emergency to ensure saftey or prevent significant loss or damage; and
  3. be a type of expenditure consistent with the definition of the contingency reserve fund i.e. an expenditure that occurs less often than once or year or usually does not occur.

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Our operating fund is overspent. May the strata council use money from the contingency reserve fund to cover the shortfall?
A strata corporation may lend money that is in the contingency reserve fund to the operating fund if:
  1. the loan is repaid by the end of the fiscal year of the strata corporation; AND
  2. the loan is for the purpose of covering temporary shortages in the operating fund resulting from expenses becoming payable before the budgeted monthly contributions to the operating fund to cover those expenses have been collected.
The strata corporation must inform the owners as soon as feasible of the amount and the purpose of any loan from the contingency reserve fund. An example of the type of operating fund expense for which a strata corporation may borrow from the contingency reserve fund is to pay a insurance premium that comes due prior to the fiscal year end of the strata corporation.

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Council Members

May a strata corporation prevent an owner from standing for council if the strata lot is in arrears of strata fees?
Yes, but the strata corporation must have a bylaw that states that no person may stand for council with respect to a strata lot if the strata corporation is entitled to register a lien against that strata lot. In that case, the owner may not stand for council.

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May an owner who is a realtor stand for strata council?
Pursuant to the Strata Property Act, an owner may stand for council and being a realtor does not preclude an owner from standing for council.

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Our strata corporation wants to pay one of the council members for some work the council member did on behalf of the strata corporation. May we do that?
Any remuneration paid to a council member in the exercise of council's powers or duties must be approved in advance of the payment. The approval could be in the budget or in the bylaws or by a resolution passed by a 3/4 vote at a general meeting.

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Fines & Fees

At the last council meeting, the council passed a rule requiring anyone who books the common room for a private event to pay a fee of $100. Is the rule enforceable?
Although section 110 of the Strata Property Act and Strata Property Regulation 6.8 permit a strata corporation to adopt a rule to impose a user fee with respect to common property or a common asset, the rule and the fee are not enforceable until the rule has been ratified by the owners at the next annual general meeting after the rule was adopted by the council.

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Can a strata corporation charge interest on late strata fees?
Yes. A strata corporation can charge interest on strata fees if the strata corporation adopts a bylaw authorizing the imposition of interest on strata fees.

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What is the maximum rate of interest that a strata corporation can apply to strata fees?
The Strata Property Regulation caps interest charged on strata fees at 10% per annum, compounded annually.

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At the last AGM, the strata corporation did not approve the budget for next year. Do I still have to pay strata fees? If so, how much are my strata fees?
Yes, strata fees are still due and owing. Until the new budget is approved, an owner must continue to pay to the strata corporation the same monthly strata fees that they were required to pay under the previous budget.

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May a strata corporation prevent an owner from standing for council if the strata lot is in arrears of strata fees?
Yes, but the strata corporation must have a bylaw that states that no person may stand for council with respect to a strata lot if the strata corporation is entitled to register a lien against that strata lot. In that case, the owner may not stand for council.

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May a strata corporation charge interest on overdue strata fees?
Yes. The amount of interest must not exceed the interest rate set out in the Regulations. Right now, the maximum interest rate that a strata corporation may charge on overdue strata fees is 10% per annum, compounded annually.

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The council wants to levy a fine for contravention of a bylaw. What are the procedures to follow?
Before the strata corporation imposes a fine against a person for contravening a bylaw or rule, it must (1) receive a complaint; (2) give the owner (or tenant) details of the complaint in writing; and (3) provide a reasonable opportunity for the owner (or tenant) to answer the complaint. A reasonable opportunity to answer the complaint may include a hearing in front of the council, if the owner (or tenant) requests a hearing. If the person complained of is a tenant, the strata corporation must give notice of the complaint to the landlord and to the owner, if the landlord and the owner are not the same. Once the strata corporation has complied with (1), (2) and (3), it makes its decision and gives notice in writing of its decision to the person complained of. Then the strata corporation may impose a fine.

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Our strata corporation is very large, but has very few visitor parking spaces. With visitor parking at such a premium, we adopted a bylaw to fine an owner $250.00 for parking in visitor parking. We just found out that the maximum fine in the Strata Property Act for this type of bylaw is $200.00. May we fine $200.00 instead?
No. The bylaw says $250.00 and therefore, it is not enforceable. The strata corporation should amend its bylaws.

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A strata corporation has a bylaw that permits it to apply the same fine for contravention of each and every bylaw. Is this appropriate?
Fines are a penalty. The punishment should fit the "crime". A strata corporation should apply a different fine for different bylaws depending on the seriousness of the breach.

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The strata corporation filed a lien on the title to a strata lot for unpaid strata fees. It was filed over a year ago and since then the amount owing has doubled. Does the strata corporation need to file another lien and revise the amount owing?
No. The lien remains valid for all lienable amounts up to the date of payment by the owner, including the reasonable costs incurred by the strata corporation to enforce the lien. A subsequent lien filing is not required.

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May a strata corporation register a lien on the title to an owner's strata lot if the owner has been assessed fines for breach of bylaws and failed to pay those fines?
No. A strata corporation may not lien for arrears of fines. A strata corporation may register a lien against an owner's strata lot if the owner fails to pay any of the following: (1) strata fees, (2) a special levy, (3) the cost of work performed by the strata corporation, but ordered by a public or local authority or (3) the strata lot's share of a judgment against the strata corporation.

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May a strata corporation prevent an owner from voting if the strata lot is in arrears of strata fees?
Yes, but the strata corporation must have a bylaw that states that the vote for a strata lot may not be exercised if the strata corporation is entitled to register a lien. In that case, the owner may not vote.

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An owner is in arrears of strata fees and the strata corporation is responsible for repairing certain damage inside the owner’s strata lot. May the strata corporation delay repairing the damage in the owner’s unit until the owner pays the arrears?
No. A strata corporation has a duty under the Strata Property Act to repair and maintain common property and any damage that results from its failure to repair and maintain common property. An owner must pay strata fees. However, the strata corporation may use other remedies in the Act to collect strata arrears.

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An owner has not paid strata fees and now the strata lot is being sold. May the strata corporation collect these arrears from the new owner?
A transfer of title to a strata lot requires the strata corporation to prepare and deliver to the buyer a Form F stating that no monies are owed to the strata corporation or, if monies are owing, that arrangements suitable to the strata corporation are in place for the strata corporation to be paid these arrears. If the strata corporation issues a Form F without collecting the outstanding amounts and states in the Form F that no monies are owing, the strata corporation may not then turn around and try to collect these arrears from the buyer or the seller.

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General Meetings

What happens if the operating budget does not pass at the annual general meeting?
Section 104 requires the Strata Corporation to prepare a new budget and to hold a special general meeting within 30 days of the annual general meeting to vote on the new budget.

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Can the owners request a special general meeting?
Yes. Under section 43 of the Strata Property Act, persons holding at least 20% of the strata corporation's votes can require the strata corporation to hold a special general meeting to consider a resolution or other matter set out in a written demand.

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Can a resident caretaker hold a proxy for general meeting?
No. Section 56(3)(a) provides that an employee of the strata corporation can only act as a proxy if permitted by regulation. To date, no regulations have been passed permitting an employee to act as a proxy.

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Our strata corporation has a painting that was provided by the developer as per the disclosure statement. We have had the painting appraised and found out it is worth $60,000. The strata council wants to sell it and use the money for future expenses of the strata corporation. Is this allowed?
Yes, but before the painting is sold, the strata corporation must approve the sale by a resolution passed by a 3/4 vote at an annual or special general meeting if the painting's market value is more than the amount set out in the bylaws or $1,000, if the bylaws are silent as to the amount.

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At a special general meeting held recently, the council announced that the Annual General Meeting would be moved from February to September. Is there anything that may be done to stop this?
Pursuant to section 40 of the Strata Property Act, the Annual General Meeting of a strata corporation must be held no later than 2 months after the fiscal year end. The council may not be aware of this, so advising the council is the first step. Since the council putting the strata corporation in contravention of the Act, 25% of the strata corporation's votes may, by written demand, require the council to call a special general meeting. The council must call the meeting within 4 weeks of the date of the demand. If the council fails to call the special general meeting, the owners who signed the demand may call and hold the special general meeting. At the meeting, the owners could insist on an explanation for the change in date for the AGM; remove council members; vote to direct council to hold the AGM pursuant to the provisions of the Act, etc.

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Our strata corporation has a bylaw that says: if there is a tie vote at an annual or special general meeting, the president may break the tie by casting a second, deciding vote. Does this bylaw apply to a resolution that must be passed by a 3/4 vote?
No. A "tie" means an equal number of yes and no votes. If a 3/4 vote resolution gets an equal number of yes and no votes, a second vote by the president will not be enough to pass the resolution because the second vote would be only a majority plus one vote.

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What is the threshold required for a vote to amend the budget presented at an annual general meeting?
The budget presented at an annual general meeting is amended by a majority vote. A majority vote is a vote in favour of a resolution by more than ½ of the votes cast by eligible voters who are present in person or by proxy at the time the vote is taken and who have not abstained from voting.

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General

Does a strata corporation have to file an income tax return?
Yes. A strata corporation is required to file a T2 corporate income tax return for every fiscal year, even if the strata corporation does not have have to pay any income taxes. A strata corporation will also have to file a T1044 information return if any of the following conditions are met:
  • the strata corporation's rental and interest income combined exceeds $10,000 in the fiscal year;
  • the strata corporation owned assets that exceeded $200,000 at the end of the prior fiscal year; or
  • the strata corporation filed a T1044 information return in the prior fiscal year.

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Can the Strata Council refuse an owner's request for a hearing?
No. Under section 34.1 of the Strata Property Act, an owner or tenant can request a hearing, by making a written application setting out the reason for the request. If the Council receives a request, it must hold a council meeting to hear the applicant within 30 days of the request.

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What is a hearing for the purposes of the Strata Property Act?
The Strata Property Regulation provides that a hearing means an opportunity to be heard in person at a council meeting.

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Can former owners or tenants request access to or copies of the Strata Corporation's records?
Yes. As a result of an amendment to section 36 of the Strata Property Act, a former owner or tenant may request access to or copies of the Strata Corporation's records, as set out in section 35, relating to the period of time during which the former owner or former tenant was an owner or tenant as applicable.

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Can the strata corporation deliver notices via email?
Yes. As a result of an amendment to section 61 of the Strata Property Act, a strata corporation can deliver a notice via email if an owner or tenant has provided an email address for the purpose of receiving notices, records or documents.

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Can an owner deliver notice to a strata corporation via email?
Yes. As a result of an amendment to section 61 of the Strata Property Act, a strata corporation can receive notice via email if the strata corporation or a council member has provided an email address.

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There are only two strata lots in our development. Does the Strata Property Act apply to us?
Yes. If your property is a strata lot, then the Strata Property Act applies.

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Insurance

An owner of a strata lot negotiated with the owner developer to install hardwood floors and other upgrades to his strata lot during the original construction of the building. This is the only strata lot in the building with these upgrades. Does the strata corporation have to insure these upgrades?
Yes. Section 149(1)(d) of the Strata Property Act imposes on the strata corporation an obligation to obtain property damage insurance on all fixtures installed by the owner developer as part of the original construction of the strata lot.

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A tenant has been named as a defendant in a lawsuit commenced by a visitor who tripped and fell on the common property, suffering personal injury. Is the tenant entitled to the benefit of the strata corporation's liability insurance?
Yes. Section 155 of the Strata Property Act states that, regardless of what the insurance policy itself says, all owners, tenants and persons who normally occupy a strata lot are named insureds on the strata corporation's insurance policy.

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What is the minimum liability insurance coverage required for a strata corporation?
The minimum amount of liability coverage required for a strata corporation is two million dollars. A strata corporation should seek higher liability coverage if it has common property amenities such as a swimming pool or a fitness facility.

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The strata corporation has obtained $1.5 million in liability coverage – is that enough?
No, under Strata Property Regulation 9.2, a strata corporation must have at least $2 million in liability coverage.

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At the AGM, council said nothing about insurance. Is that a breach of the Act?
Section 154 of the Strata Property Act requires an annual review of adequacy of insurance; and a report on insurance coverage at an annual general meeting.

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How long must a strata corporation retain copies of insurance policies?
Strata Property Regulation 4.1(7)(b) requires a strata corporation to maintain any insurance policy for at least 6 years from the date of expiry.

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Council refuses to allow an owner permission to look at or obtain a copy of the strata corporation's insurance policy. May council do that?
No. An owner, as a named insured and pursuant to section 36(1) of the Strata Property Act, is entitled to look at and obtain a copy of the strata corporation's insurance policies.

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Law Suits

A strata corporation is served with a writ. How soon does the strata corporation have to notify the owners of the law suit?
Section 167 of the Strata Property Act states that the strata corporation must inform the owners "as soon as it is feasible", if it is being sued. The Oxford Dictionary defines feasible as "practical" or "capable of being done". In addition, section 65 of the Act permits the strata corporation to notify owners of a law suit by leaving a document containing the information at a location designated by the strata corporation for the distribution of such information i.e. in the lobby or in a common area OR by posting the information in a part of the common proeprty designated by the strata corporation for the posting of such information i.e a notice board or bulletin board OR by any other method.

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A strata corporation wants to start legal action and sue an owner to collect outstanding strata fees. Does the strata corporation need to pass a resolution by a 3/4 vote to authorize the law suit?
No. A recent B.C. Supreme Court decision determined that a 3/4 vote is not necessary before an strata corporation may sue an owner in arrears of strata fees or special levies.

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Limited Common Property

My strata corporation consists of two sections – commercial and residential. The residential section has a limited common property lobby area with furniture that is looking worn and should be replaced. Do all owners have to pay for the new furniture?
Strata Property Regulation 11.2 provides that an operating expense or special levy related to limited common property designated to a section is shared amongst only those strata lots who are entitled to the benefit of the limited common property.

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Every owner in our development has a balcony that is accessible only through a strata lot. Are these balconies common property or limited common property?
Whether a balcony is common property, limited common property or part of a strata lot is determined by a review of the strata plan or a review of any resolutions that may have been filed in the Land Title Office on the general index. A balcony is not limited common property merely because access is limited or restricted.

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How do we know if our balconies are common property or limited common property when each strata lot has a private balcony that no one else can access? Does that mean it is limited common property?
If the balconies are limited common property, they will be designated as limited common property on the strata plan.

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An owner says that the balconies and patios are limited common property because only one owner has access. How does a strata corporation know if a balcony is common property or limited common property?
The Strata Property Act defines limited common property as common property designated for the exclusive use of the owners of one or more strata lots. The key is the use of the word "designated". There are only two ways to "designate" common property as limited common property on the strata plan or by a resolution passed by a 3/4 vote of the owners at a general meeting. If a balcony is not designated in either of these two ways, then it is not limited common property.

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Non-residential Strata Lots

My strata corporation has both residential and non-residential strata lots. The residential strata lots have enough votes to pass amendments to the bylaws without considering the non-residential strata lots. Can the residential strata lots pass bylaws over the objections of the non–residential strata lots?
No – Section 128(1)(c) of the Strata Property Act provides that separate 3/4 vote resolution are required of each of the residential strata lots and the non–residential strata lots in order to pass bylaw amendments.

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Is the owner of a non-residential strata lot required to provide a Form K – Notice of Tenant's Responsibilties to the strata corporation?
No. Section 146 requires the owner of a residential strata lot to provide a Form K-Notice of Tenant's Responsibilities to the strata corporation within two weeks of renting a residential strata lot. If a strata corporation wants to require the owner of a non-residential strata lot to provide a Form K to the strata corporation, then there must be a bylaw that requires the owner of a noon-residential strata lot to provide a Form K.

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Is a strata corporation that is comprised of both residential and non-residential strata lots required to have separate sections?
No. The decision to have separate sections for residential and non-residential strata lots is a decision of the owners.

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Personal Property

Our strata corporation has a painting that was provided by the developer as per the disclosure statement. We have had the painting appraised and found out it is worth $60,000. The strata council wants to sell it and use the money for future expenses of the strata corporation. Is this allowed?
Yes, but before the painting is sold, the strata corporation must approve the sale by a resolution passed by a 3/4 vote at an annual or special general meeting if the painting's market value is more than the amount set out in the bylaws or $1,000, if the bylaws are silent as to the amount.

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Is it necessary for the owners to approve the purchase of equipment for our exercise room?
Yes, the strata corporation must obtain prior approval by a resolution passed by a 3/4 vote at a general meeting before buying (or selling) personal property such as exercise equipment where the fair market value of the item is more than $1,000 or any other amount that is specified in the bylaws.

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Pets

A strata corporation passed a bylaw two years ago prohibiting pets. An owner wishes to sell the owner's strata lot, but the prospective buyer has a pet. Is a "no pet" bylaw enforceable?
If the "no pet" bylaw was adopted by a 3/4 vote of the owners at a properly convened general meeting and filed in the Land Title Office, it is enforceable. A strata corporation may prohibit pets. However, the bylaw will not apply to a pet living with an owner, tenant or occupant at the time the bylaw was adopted.

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Our strata corporation has a bylaw that prohibits dogs that was passed under the Condominium Act and filed in the Land Title Office. The strata corporation never filed any new bylaws when the the Strata Property Act came in. According to the Strata Property Act, the Schedule of Standard Bylaws applies to our strata corporation, but it has a different pet bylaw. Which bylaw applies?
The original pet bylaw still applies as long as it has not been repealed since the date it was passed. The Schedule of Standard Bylaws in the Strata Property Act applies only to the extent that your strata corporation does not have an enforceable bylaw that deals with the same issue. An enforceable bylaw on the same issue, filed in the Land Title Office, will take precedence over a bylaw in the Schedule of Standard Bylaws.

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Privacy

An owner is requesting contact information for all owners. Must the strata corporation provide this information? What about privacy legislation?
The Strata Property Act requires the strata corporation to make available a list of names and addresses of owners, if requested by an owner or a person authorized in writing by an owner. The Personal Information Protection Act requires an organization, including a strata corporation, to comply with all legislation that requires disclosure of personal information. The Strata Property Act does not require the disclosure of owners' phone numbers. However, a strata corporation is required to maintain a record of either the council members' phone numbers or some other method by which the council members may be contacted on short notice.

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As a property manager, we frequently receive phone calls from strata owners requesting information about themselves, for example, what is their outstanding balance for their strata fees. Is this "Personal Information" and, if so, to what length do property management companies need to go in order to ensure that we are speaking to that individual?
This is a request for personal information. If one applies the Personal Information Protection Act strictly you would require them to make the request in writing. However, in this instance that is not practical, nor always reasonable. Therefore, where a request for personal information is simple and straightforward, it should be answered in a simple and straightforward manner. While, the identity of the caller poses a problem from a security perspective, you must be guided by what is reasonable in the circumstances. The more sensitive and the more extensive the request, the more care that should be taken to protect the information. If there is a concern about the identity of the caller, property management staff can explain that the request is best put in writing or explain they will look into the issue and ask for a phone number to call them back. At least, in this way, they may check the call back number against information that may already be on file.

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Rentals

Where do we obtain a copy of our Rental Disclosure Statement?
A Rental Disclosure Statement is available by fax from the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate. There is a fee for this service.

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Our strata corporation has a bylaw that prohibits rentals. One owner wants to rent to her sister. Since she is a family member, would that exempt the strata lot from the bylaw?
No. A family member is defined in the Strata Property Act as the parents of the owner or the children of the owner or the spouse of the owner or the parents of the spouse of the owner or the children of the spouse of the owner. A sister of the owner is not a family member as defined in the Strata Property Act.

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Our strata corporation has 5 owners who have foreign students living with them in their strata lot. The strata corporation has a bylaw limiting the number of rentals to 2. Are these students tenants?
Yes, the Strata Property Act defines a tenant as a person who rents all or part of a strata lot.

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May a strata corporation require an owner to reside in a strata lot for one year (or another period of time) before being allowed to rent the owner’s strata lot?
No. A strata corporation may, by bylaw, prohibit rentals, limit the number of strata lots that may be rented or limit the period of time that strata lots may be rented. A strata corporation may not require an owner to first reside in the owner’s strata lot in order to qualify to rent the strata lot.

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Sale of Strata Lots

Our bylaws provide that owners cannot put up any signs to advertise the sale of their strata lot. Is such a bylaw enforceable?
No. Section 122 of the Strata Property Act permits a strata corporation to pass a bylaw relating to the sale of a strata lot, including locations for the posting of signs but the bylaw cannot prohibit or unreasonably restrict the posting of such signs.

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May we have a bylaw that requires real estate showings to be by appointment only?
No. A strata corporation may not prohibit the holding of open houses.

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Our strata corporation does not want to allow any real estate signs. May we ban them?
A strata corporation may pass bylaws that govern activities relating to the sale of a strata lot, including determining the locations for the posting of for sale signs, but may not prohibit or unreasonably restrict the posting of for sale signs.

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May a strata corporation adopt a bylaw that prohibits owners from holding an open house in connection with the sale of a strata lot?
No. A strata corporation may pass bylaws that govern activities related to the sale of a strata lot, including restricting the locations for the posting of "for sale" signs and regulating the times for showing common property. A strata corporation may also regulate the holding of open houses. But the bylaw must be reasonable and may not prohibit these activities.

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Separate Sections

My strata corporation consists of two sections – commercial and residential. The residential section has a limited common property lobby area with furniture that is looking worn and should be replaced. Do all owners have to pay for the new furniture?
Strata Property Regulation 11.2 provides that an operating expense or special levy related to limited common property designated to a section is shared amongst only those strata lots who are entitled to the benefit of the limited common property.

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Our strata corporation has residential and non-residential strata lots. We have always had a single strata council and share one operating fund and contingency reserve fund. Are we required to have separate sections?
No. If there is no will amongst the owners to have separate sections, then it is not required.

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Signs

Our bylaws provide that owners cannot put up any signs to advertise the sale of their strata lot. Is such a bylaw enforceable?
No. Section 122 of the Strata Property Act permits a strata corporation to pass a bylaw relating to the sale of a strata lot, including locations for the posting of signs but the bylaw cannot prohibit or unreasonably restrict the posting of such signs.

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Our strata corporation does not want to allow any real estate signs. May we ban them?
A strata corporation may pass bylaws that govern activities relating to the sale of a strata lot, including determining the locations for the posting of for sale signs, but may not prohibit or unreasonably restrict the posting of for sale signs.

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A strata corporation has a bylaw that prohibits the posting of signs in a strata lot or on common property. An owner wants to put an election sign in the window of his strata lot. Does that contravene the bylaw?
No. The Canada Elections Act, in section 322, provides that no condominium corporation or any of its agents may prohibit the owner of a condominium unit from displaying election advertising posters in his or her unit. However, the condominium corporation or agent may set reasonable conditions relating to the size or type of election advertising posters that may be displayed on a strata lot or the common property and may prohibit the display of election advertising posters in common areas of the building in which the premises are located.

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Small Strata Corporations

We have only 2 strata lots in our strata corporation. Does the Strata Property Act apply to us?
The Strata Property Act applies to all strata corporations regardless of the number of strata lots.

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Our strata corporation has only 6 strata lots. Are we obliged to give notice of meetings as provided in the Strata Property Act?
The Strata Property Act governs every strata corporation. Those provisions and bylaws that govern the giving notice and the holding general meetings apply to all strata corporations.

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Does the Strata Property Act apply to duplex stratas?
Yes, it applies to all strata corporations.

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Special Levies

My strata corporation consists of two sections – commercial and residential. The residential section has a limited common property lobby area with furniture that is looking worn and should be replaced. Do all owners have to pay for the new furniture?
Strata Property Regulation 11.2 provides that an operating expense or special levy related to limited common property designated to a section is shared amongst only those strata lots who are entitled to the benefit of the limited common property.

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Our strata corporation passed a resolution authorizing a special levy in May. The resolution states that levy is payable in three equal instalments on the first day of July, August and September. If an owner sells a strata lot on July 15, who pays the special levy?
The seller must pay the part of the special levy payable before the date of conveyance. The buyer pays the instalments due after the date of conveyance. In this case, the seller pays the July 1st instalment and the buyer pays the August 1st and September 1st instalments.

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My strata corporation consists of two identical buildings each with 40 residential strata lots. The furniture in the lobby of one of the buildings is looking rather worn and we would like to purchase new furniture and pay for it by a special levy. Do all strata lots pay the special levy?
Yes. Since the complex is not eligible under the Strata Property Act to have separate sections, one for each building, the strata corporation must levy on all 80 strata lots and not just the strata lots in the building getting the new furniture.

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A strata corporation passed a resolution by a 3/4 vote authorizing a special levy for renewal of the landscaping around the building. Some of those funds are unspent and the landscaping is done. May the strata corporation use those surplus funds for new furniture in the lobby.
The strata corporation must use the money collected by means of a special levy for the purpose set out in the resolution. If the amount collected exceeds the amount required or is not fully used for the purpose set out in the resolution, the strata corporation must return the money to the owners. But if, at the time of returning the funds, each owner would receive less than $100.00, the strata corporation may deposit the surplus in the contingency reserve fund without getting the owners' approval.

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Strata Agent

Our strata corporation has decided to retain a strata agent to manage us. Does the hiring of a strata agent require a 3/4 vote of the owners at a general meeting?
No. A strata council has the authority to contract with a strata management company for strata management services. However, the cost of strata management is a common expense payable from the operating fund and approval of the operating fund as part of the annual budget is by a majority vote at the annual general meeting.

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Strata Plans

Does a strata corporation have to keep a copy of the strata plan?
Yes, section 35(2) requires a strata corporation to maintain a copy of the strata plan that has been filed in the land title office. The version of the strata plan found in the Disclosure Statement is not sufficient.

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Unapproved Expenditures

How much may a strata corporation spend from the operating fund, if the expenditure in not an emergency and the expenditure was not approved at the time of approval of the annual budget?
If there is no category in the operating fund for the particular expenditure, (for example, legal costs), then the maximum that a strata corporation may spend, in total, over an entire fiscal year is:
  1. $2,000; or
  2. 5% of the current year's operating fund whichever is less.
The strata corporation may adopt a bylaw that sets a different limit.

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User Fees

At the last council meeting, the council passed a rule requiring anyone who books the common room for a private event to pay a fee of $100. Is the rule enforceable?
Although section 110 of the Strata Property Act and Strata Property Regulation 6.8 permit a strata corporation to adopt a rule to impose a user fee with respect to common property or a common asset, the rule and the fee are not enforceable until the rule has been ratified by the owners at the next annual general meeting after the rule was adopted by the council.

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Our strata corporation has a guest suite and we want to institute a fee for its use. May we state the fee in the minutes of council meetings and change it from time to time?
The amount of a fee for the use of common property must be stated in a bylaw or a rule.

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May a strata corporation charge a user fee for the use of an amenity?
Yes, if the user fee is reasonable and if it is set out in a bylaw or a rule.

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Voting & Governance

Can an owner give a proxy via email?
To be valid, a proxy must be signed by the person giving the proxy. As a result, an unsigned email is not a valid proxy.

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My strata corporation has both residential and non-residential strata lots. The residential strata lots have enough votes to pass amendments to the bylaws without considering the non-residential strata lots. Can the residential strata lots pass bylaws over the objections of the non–residential strata lots?
No – Section 128(1)(c) of the Strata Property Act provides that separate 3/4 vote resolution are required of each of the residential strata lots and the non–residential strata lots in order to pass bylaw amendments.

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Our strata corporation has a council member who is not on title to the strata lot, however, she is the spouse of the strata lot owner. May she be a council member?
According to section 28 of the Strata Property Act, a council member must be: (1) an owner; or (2) a representative of a corporate owner; or (3) a tenant with a written assignment of an owner's right to be on council; or (4) a different class of person that has been given the right to stand for council by authority of a duly passed bylaw of the strata corporation. Since the person on council is not an owner and not a tenant and assuming that the strata corporation does not have a bylaw that allows spouses to stand for council, she is not authorized to be on council.

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If every owner who attends a general meeting votes in favour of a resolution. Is that a unanimous vote?
No. A unanimous vote under the Strata Property Act is a vote in favour of a resolution by all the votes of all eligible voters. Every eligible voter in the strata corporation must cast a vote in favour of the resolution in order for the vote to be a unanimous vote.

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May the strata corporation ban proxies?
No. A person is permitted to vote in person or by proxy.

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If there are 40 eligible voters present in person or by proxy at a general meeting and 8 abstain from voting, how many votes are required to pass a resolution by a 3/4 vote?
The definition of 3/4 vote tells us that abstentions do not count as votes cast. If there are 40 eligible voters present in person or by proxy and 8 abstain from voting, then to pass a resolution by a 3/4 vote requires 75% of 32 not 75% of 40.

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Is a proxy a record of the strata corporation that must be provided to an owner on written request?
No. A proxy is not a record of the strata corporation. The strata corporation must check that the proxy is in writing and is signed by the owner. The strata corporation is not entitled to keep a proxy or ensure that the proxy holder votes in compliance with any conditions stated on the proxy by the owner.

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May a strata manager hold a proxy?
No. Section 56 of the Strata Property Act states that a person who provides strata management services to a strata corporation may hold a proxy if permitted by the Regulations to the Strata Property Act. There is nothing in the Regulations that permits a strata manager to hold a proxy. Therefore, a strata manager may not hold a proxy.

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If the strata corporation is the owner of a strata lot, who exercises the vote for that strata lot?
No one.

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Our strata corporation is entering into a contract to repaint the exterior of our building. The contract refers to the complex as Mountain Oaks, which is our building name. What is our strata corporation's legal name for purposes of a contract?
Pursuant to section 2 of the Strata Property Act, the owners of the strata lots in the strata plan are members of the strata corporation under the name "The Owners, Strata Plan [insert the registration number of the strata plan].

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May council members be paid to perform their duties?
Yes, but any remuneration paid to a strata council member for performing council duties must be approved in advance of any payment in the annual budget or in the bylaws or by a resolution passed by a 3/4 vote at an annual or special general meeting.

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How much notice is required before holding a special general meeting?
The strata corporation must give 2 weeks' written notice of an annual or special general meeting. However, if the notice is delivered by slipping it under the strata lot door or by leaving it with a person who happens to answer the door or by mailing it or faxing it, then the notice is not conclusively deemed to be delivered for 4 days additional days. When calculating whether a strata corporation has provided 4 days for deemed delivery, do not count the day that you send the notice. Therefore, the notice period for a special or annual general meeting is actually 19 days.

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If a council member is not available to attend a council meeting, may the council member give his/her proxy to another?
No, a council member may not attend a council meeting by proxy.

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A number of owners who live outside the strata plan are sending in their proxies by email because they do not have a fax machine and therefore the proxies are not on the "official" proxy form that was sent out with notice of the general meeting. The owners state the purpose of the proxy and to whom it is given. When we print out the email, it includes their return email address. Is that sufficient to meet the needs for a proxy?
No. Section 56 of the Strata Property Act states that a proxy must be in writing and signed by the person appointing the proxy. Unless a proxy delivered by email is signed by the person appointing the proxy, it is not valid. The Act does not require certain wording or a prescribed form of proxy. The Act has an optional Form A that may be used as a form of proxy. A proxy may be delivered by fax or email, provided that it is signed by the person appointing the proxy. The signature need not be an original signature.

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An owner gives a Power of Attorney to a friend to manage the owner's affairs with respect to their strata lot. May the person with the Power of Attorney stand for election to council?
No. A person given a Power of Attorney by an owner has a duty to the owner to act in the best interests of the owner. A council member has a duty to act in the best interests of the strata corporation. The duty of the person with the Power of Attorney is in conflict with the duty of a council member.

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May the spouse of an owner who is not on title to a strata lot stand for council?
In order for the spouse of an owner who is not an owner to stand for council, the strata corporation must have a bylaw that permits the spouse of an owner to stand for council.

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May a strata corporation prevent an owner from voting if the strata lot is in arrears of strata fees?
Yes, but the strata corporation must have a bylaw that states that the vote for a strata lot may not be exercised if the strata corporation is entitled to register a lien. In that case, the owner may not vote.

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At a recent special general meeting, everyone at the meeting voted in favour of the resolution. Is that a unanimous vote?
No. A unanimous vote is a defined term in the Strata Property Act. A unanimous vote is a vote in favour of a resolution by all the votes of all the eligible voters. If not all the eligible voters cast a vote at the meeting, then it is not a unanimous vote.

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