Tony Gioventu, 24 hours


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Strata council rules a disaster

Dear Tony: A few years ago our strata council tried to adopt bylaws that would prohibit rentals, pets and an age restriction of 55 and over. At the time our owners were strongly opposed to any such restrictions as we had never had any problems with tenants, pets or younger owners. Finally, the council let the matters drop and all has been peaceful.

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Falling behind on strata fees

Dear Tony: Unfortunately, I lost my job a few months ago and fell behind on my strata fees.

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Are all owners part of small strata corporations?

Dear Tony: We have a simple question that relates to council. Our strata is only a three-unit townhouse complex in Vancouver. All three owners have been very cooperative about operations and maintenance and no one has ever opposed spending money to maintain our building. The Standard Bylaws of the Act say that if a strata has fewer than four owners

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Disputing an amount with a strata

Dear Tony: We have sold our unit and the closing date is Sept. 1. We requested a copy of a Form F payment certificate and on receipt were bewildered to discover the strata is claiming we owe over $2,500 in fines and damages. We have no records or notice from the strata of any such claims so we requested copies of council minutes and correspondence

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What is a majority vote and what is a 3/4 vote to approve contingency fund expenses?

Dear Tony: At our annual meeting last week the owners defeated the annual budget and all of the resolutions that council put forward for 2017-18. The strata council had put forward a budget including items that were not part of annual operations and they had included several contingency items for major repairs by majority vote that had no estimates

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When is special levy money refunded?

Dear Tony: Our strata corporation replaced our roofing in 2016. In addition to the $300,000 contingency funds that were authorized, the owners also authorized a special levy of $200,000 with the understanding that if any funds were left over they would be returned to the owners. When the project ended, we had $80,000 remaining, but the strata counc

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Are LED light upgrades worth considering?

Dear Tony: Our strata council has proposed a resolution on our annual meeting notice that would authorize up to $85,000 to upgrade all our common area lighting to LEDs. The business case they have put forward indicates we will have $28,000 of electrical savings and we would recover the costs in just over three years. Our council does not have a ver

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To destroy ballots or not, that is the question?

Dear Tony: What happens to ballots at a general meeting? We had our AGM in May and the election of council was a very hotly contested issue. The property manager insisted he would count the ballots, which were blank recipe cards, and announced after the count the seven elected council members, which happened to be last year’s council. We know that

Limiting proxies isn't enforceable

Dear Tony: Our property manager and lawyer told us that we were not allowed to hold more than three proxies per person at a Special General Meeting that was held last week.

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Giving access to my strata lot

Dear Tony: My strata corporation is insisting that I provide a key to my strata lot so fire safety inspections can be done.

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What to do when owners owe money to strata corporation

Dear Tony: Our strata corporation currently has over $100,000 in money owing from owners. As a council member, I am very concerned that we aren't properly administering our accounts and hope you have some suggestions for collections.

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Are owners responsible for mail box maintenance?

Dear Tony: Our strata corporation recently had a break in that affected the mail boxes in our lobby. In addition to the break in, there was significant damage and vandalism to the mail boxes. Council has told owners they are responsible for the repair of each of their mail boxes, but this is not part of our strata lot so how is that possible? We do

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How are user fees for certain things decided?

Dear Tony: How are fees for things like parking spaces, entry fobs and extra storage lockers decided? Our strata recently received notice of an increase in fees for the replacement of new fobs from $50 to $250!!! When we contacted our strata council treasurer she knew nothing about the increase as she had been away and was just as surprised.

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Liquidation or winding up, what’s the difference?

Dear Tony: Our strata is starting the process of looking into the sale of our strata. We are an older four-floor, wood frame building located a block from a SkyTrain station. A number of agents have approached us to see if we are interested in selling, but we are getting conflicting information. Of the 42 units in our building, we have at least six

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Request to build accessibility ramp denied by strata president

Dear Tony: I live in a townhouse complex in the Okanagan, and each home has three steps leading up to the front door. My husband recently had a mild stroke and requires a walker so access has become a problem for us. We called our strata president and requested permission to remove our stairs and have a ramp installed that would give him safe acces