Preventing Bad Things from Happening

December 2018

There is no shortage of stories about bad things happening in condo buildings. Many times the bad things are exaggerated, misrepresented or manipulated for personal benefit. Believing much of this can lead to a perception that condo corporations are run by incompetent or evil people.

This is not even close to the reality of condo living and condo management.

Some of the stories may be true. The reality is that bad things will happen from time to time. Good condo corporations work to minimize or prevent bad things from happening to the best of their ability.

Over half of all Torontonians reside in a condo building. This is a large population of condo dwellers among which some bad things will happen from time to time. Money may be stolen. Directors may make poor decisions. Condo owners and residents may act petty and treat each other badly. Some homeowners may lose their home due to circumstances or poor personal decisions.

Condo directors and owners considering bad things that have happened should ask if a situation could have been avoided. Is it possible that an involved owner or director could have identified a problem sooner? Could a bad manager have been prevented from doing bad things if a director or owner was paying closer attention? How hard would it have been to have prevented a problem from occurring?

Answering these questions honestly requires each individual to consider what they could have done. Saying that “someone” could or should have done something is not the same as taking responsibility. When it comes to someone’s home, responsibility resides with the owner.

Being able to answer these questions may require attendance at meetings, running for election or participating on committees. It may require research to identify specific problems and come up with practical solutions. Most certainly it requires reading and understanding the condo corporation’s governing documents; declaration, by-laws and rules.

None of this may be fun but owning and residing in a home was never intended to be fun. It takes work to make it work!