Communication is a two-way street.
Condo management and directors have a need to get information to residents. Residents want a way to be heard.
Condo directors and management can unnecessarily create divisions within condo communities by defining their constituency too narrowly. Viewing their obligation as being to serve, represent and communicate only with registered owners is a disservice to their community.
Part of a condo community is registered owners who may or may not reside in their suite. Family members may include spouse, children and extended family. Ignoring the interests, needs and skills of these individuals has a direct impact on building quality, reputation and value.
Perhaps the most neglected segment of the condo community is renters. This group can be viewed and treated as second class citizens by condo owners and directors. They may not be welcome at annual general meetings, town hall meetings or on committees. Renters are easily and perhaps falsely blamed for condo community problems, late night partying and theft or damage to common areas, by owners in a forum where they cannot defend themselves.
Such accusations are often based on speculation. Many condo renters are wealthy and educated individuals who find renting preferable to home ownership. Some do so for convenience. Others have worked the numbers. They have concluded that renting is more economical and less risky than purchasing a home.
Many renters are capable and successful individuals that should be encouraged to participate in condo governance.
Condo corporations that alienate renters and other residents who are not condo owners devalue their property. Individuals who find their condo building inhospitable are unlikely to be among future owners in the building. They will share these opinions and discourage others from considering a purchase in your building.
Denying these people access to public financial reports and the Annual General Meeting is a secretive approach to governance and communication that serves no practical purpose. It is unappealing to those considering the purchase of a condo home.
Such condo buildings are not the long-term choice for educated and wealthier individuals most coveted by those selling their condos.