Nov
21

Raising Your Voice For Your Condo

If you want to make changes in your condo community it may be necessary to volunteer to be on your condo board, run for election and get active.

Many residents have strong opinions on how their condominium board should be spending money, but sometimes it can be difficult finding members to lead new projects. Take initiative and make a difference today.

Bringing it to the Table

Get comfortable pitching ideas to the board. Suite metering is a great place to start. At Priority Submetering Solutions, our suite metering experts will come to your board meeting and discuss the benefits and processes involved with suite metering your building. Reach out to one of our qualified team members at 1-866-836-3837 x2 to get started. We want to hear from you about your condo’s energy usage, electricity and water rates. Make a list of any questions and concerns you may have about how your condo management team is handling utility billing, maintenance fees and any energy saving measures currently in place. Once a suite metering program is implemented, it will make energy and money saving programs measurable. For example, if your condo board decides to retrofit the building with LED lights in the common areas, suite metering will allow you to see the usage from before the retrofit was installed and how much savings the building has had since the LED’s have been in place. Suite metering can be seen as the gateway to opening up new conversations and encourage making further changes in the building.

Survey the Residents

This takes time and effort, but it can be a valuable, proactive way to engage with your community. If your building residents are technologically active, an email survey created online can be a time saving tool. Surveys are a clear indicator of how residents feel about specific issues. You can survey residents on topics ranging from fire safety to vending machines. Exciting news: Condo boards can hold meetings using teleconference or any other communication system that allows for transmission in digital or electronic form (or similar means), as long as it allows the directors to communicate concurrently. (1.)

Be Persistent and Patient

People forget. People forget things easily. If you are going to have an item on the Agenda at your condo board meeting, be sure to follow up on your presentation at the next monthly meeting, and the next monthly meeting after that. Information needs to be repeated in order for it to sink in. Within 20 minutes we forget 40% of what we learned. After another 40 minutes, we forget half of it. You may have a brilliant idea about how your condominium Holiday Party can save hundreds of dollars by using a different caterer; don’t expect to waltz in for one meeting in December and make your point to a standing ovation. Do your research on the how and why of your condo’s by-laws and policies. Consider sending out a survey and plan to attend and participate in more than one meeting a year if you are on the board.

According to the Condominium Act, 1998, Sec. 50.2: Only 15% of the owners of the condo units are required to meet quorum if after two meetings, 25% of owners have not responded.  In 2017 the Lieutenant Governor made this amendment. Clearly there has been challenges getting 25% of owners to participate in voting. All the more reason you should start getting involved now. If you already are a board member – congratulations! We hope you will continue to raise your voice for your condo community.

1. https://www.condoauthorityontario.ca/en-US/condominium-living/meetings-voting/board-meetings/