Condominium E-magazine Issue # 6 -   August 2005
     FYI ... Rumor .....
 
The Rumor that I (Bernie Winter ) am ill and that I have sold Condo-Check and am no longer actively involved is just that, a rumor!  I am alive, healthy and well and remain at the helm.  Condo-Check is 10 years old as of September 2005 and I have no plans to sell my interest in the company.
 
Condo-Check has gone through a number of changes due to the rapid growth we continue to experience.  Our goal remains to provide accurate and exceptional service for our clients.  We we are proud to be the industry leaders as we continue to provide the document review service in Alberta and look forward to expanding accross Canada. 
 
We welcome your feedback as you experience the new and improved services at Condo-Check.  Once you have completed the Document Review Service be sure to go to our website at www.condo-check.com and complete our "Customer Satisfaction Survey".  We will draw from those who complete the survey for a free copy of our new book "10 Secrets to Surviving Life in a Condominium, live the dream-not the nightmare" once each week.
 
I assure you that am alive and kicking!  I can be reached on-line at bernie.condocheck@shawbiz.ca or by phone on my direct line at (403) 509-2253.  
 
Thanks for asking     .....     Cheers!    Bernie
 

Betty's Condo Owners Club presents

Condo TeleSeminars

Dial in from anywhere.  No parking, no rushing between work and home just to leave again.
Listen and learn about timely condominium topics. 
30 minutes of listening followed by 30 minutes of interactive questions.
 

Wednesday September 21, 2005

7:00 - 8:00 pm

Tips for completing a Reserve Fund Update

Jim Warren of Morrison Hershfield will talk about the legislated requirement for all condominiums to have a Reserve Fund Study update. He will share differences that apply to condominiums that have 12 units or less and provide tips on what to look for when hiring the best Reserve Fund Provider for your condominium.
 
For Betty Condo Owners Club members - “No Charge
Non-members $15.00
 
The program will be recorded.  CD's will be available upon request so you can
share the information with others  at a cost of $10.00 (plus GST and SH).
 
Only  50 phone lines available Register NOW!! 
Register by September 14th and invite a guest at no charge.

Register Here

Become A Club Member

 
Mark your calendar for future TeleSeminar dates:

Tuesday  October 25, 2005

6:30 - 7:30 pm

and

Wednesday  November 16, 2005

7:00 - 8:00 pm


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Preparing for a General Meeting:  A Checklist for Owners
 
                                                                                                         by Deborah M. Howes, A.C.C.I., F.C.C.I., C. Arb., C. Med.
                                                                                                 President, High Clouds Incorporated
 
Condominium Directors often receive information about how to prepare for a general meeting.  I’ve chaired many meetings and often wonder how much information the owners receive about their role and how to prepare.  What should they do, read or get ready?  The following information and checklists can be useful guides for owners preparing to go to a general meeting.
 
                Two Types of Meetings
 
The Corporation’s annual general meeting (“AGM”) is a guaranteed annual opportunity for owners to be active in their condominium community.  All owners receive notice of this meeting and are entitled to attend, speak, and, if qualified, vote.
 
From time to time the Board or owners want to have other general meetings to conduct business in between AGMs.  These meetings are called extra-ordinary general meetings (“EGM”).
               
                When to Hold
 
An AGM must be held once every calendar year (January - December) and no more than 15 months from the last AGM.   Section 30 of the Condominium Property Act sets these time limits, but the Corporation’s bylaws may be even more specific on the date.  EGM’s can be held any time the Board calls the meeting or when enough owners ask the Board to call a meeting.  The bylaws set out the number of owners or unit factors held by owners required to call a meeting.
 
                Business at the Meeting
 
The business to be conducted (called the agenda) at the AGM is normally set out in the bylaws.  If not, the Board will normally follow a fairly standard agenda which includes:    call the meeting to order
  • elect or appoint a chair, if required
  • proof of notice of meeting
  • call the roll and establish the quorum (quorum is the minimum number of owners required to
  • do business - set out in the bylaws)
  • amend and adopt the agenda
  • read and dispose of minutes of the previous general or annual general meeting
  • officers’ reports
  • committee reports
  • financial report (annual or audited financial statements, budget, appointment of auditors)
  • old business
  • new business (often includes owners’ questions and comments)
  • election of the Directors
  • adjournment
              
Voting
 
The Act and the Corporation’s bylaws determine an owner’s voting rights.  An owner’s right to vote can only be bypassed in two cases.  First, if the first mortgagee (lender) on title to the unit decides it wants to attend the meeting and vote (and sends written notice to the Corporation about that intention), the owner cannot vote (but can still attend the meeting and speak).  Rarely does this occur.  Second, if the owner owes money to the Corporation for more than 30 days as of the day before the meeting, neither the owner nor any mortgagee on that unit can vote.  Owners need to understand that they must be current with their condominium contributions and other financial obligations to the Corporation to enable them to vote.  Owners cannot bring money or a cheque to the meeting and hope to get a voting card.  They must pay any outstanding amounts the day before the meeting.
 
                How to Prepare
 
Just as the Board prepares, so must owners prepare for the AGM.  Consider the following steps:
 
  • watch the newsletter for information about the upcoming meeting (usually sent out well before the actual notice of meeting).
  • think about any items you want discussed at the AGM.  Write the items in a letter and send it to the Board. No one likes surprises - not the Board and not the other owners.  Generally last minute additions result in conflict and often prevent the Board from gathering necessary information to give to the owner at the meeting.
  •   read the bylaws, meeting notice, agenda and any information sent with the meeting notice.  Prepare your comments and questions.  Get ready to discuss motions and vote on motions.
  •   think about the Directors on your Board. What do you know about their roles?  What do the bylaws say about the qualifications for Directors?  Are you satisfied with the current Directors’ governance of the Corporation?  Do you know who else is interested in being on the Board?  What do you know about these people?  What knowledge or experience do other candidates have for the role of Director?  Who will you vote for?  Are you interested in being a Director?  Do you have the time and the energy to commit to the role?  Are you willing to learn and to work hard for all the owners?
  • pay your condominium contributions and any other money owed to the Corporation by the day before the meeting.
  • arrange to attend the meeting or complete, sign and give your proxy to someone on your behalf.   If you choose a proxy, inform that person of your questions or comments to pass on.
  • if you choose to attend the meeting, plan to arrive ½ hour early for registration and take all your documents with you (bylaws, meeting notice, documents sent with the meeting notice, budget, financial statements, etc.).  Most often extra copies are not provided at the meeting.
 
                At the Meeting
 
At the meeting, register at the front door and pick up your voting card and any new information that is being handed out.  Find a chair and read any new information.  Follow the rules of order and the agenda for the meeting.  The Chair of the meeting controls the order in the meeting and makes sure everyone follows the agenda. 
 
When you want to speak at the meeting, raise your hand and wait until you are recognized by the Chair.  Identify yourself by name and unit number and then state your comments or your motion.  If you are unsure and have questions, ask the Chair to help you.
 
Speak to motions if you have something to add.  Ask questions to learn more.  Make informed decisions when you vote.  Be courteous to other owners and the Directors.  Everyone is a volunteer and wants the best for the condominium community, even if they hold different views than you do.
 
Some simple guidelines to keep in mind:
  •   everyone is bound by the bylaws
  • rules of order are used to ensure everyone can participate in an orderly manner - no one should attempt to take over or take all the time at the meeting
  • respect all owners and persons - whether present or not - refer to others by their role or as an owner, rather than by name
  • do not accuse or blame others - there may be more than one side to the story or a reason for actions that you do not know - be curious rather than blaming
  • every owner has the right to participate - all bring information and ideas, whether the same as yours or not
  • remember that the owners elected the Board last year - even if you may not like all their decisions - they agreed to volunteer and make the tough decisions along the way - they are, most often, also owners like you
  •   treat everyone as being honest, until proven otherwise - do not cast stones hastily - apply the golden rule
  •   informed decisions are made using information - not emotion
  • a general meeting is also a time to get to know your neighbours and build the community - make the best of the opportunity.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


Services Available


  • Document Review Service for Buyers & Sellers
  • Reserve Fund Studies
  • Bylaws
  • Consulting

www.condo-check.com


Trades & Service Directory

  • a place where board members, owners, and professionals can access trades and services
  • each ad is also a link to advertisers website (when provided)
  • each category is limited to 6 advertisers (except realtors and Property Managers)
  • categories are created based on the area of service provided.  for example: for Roofing we have roofing inspectors, roof installers, roofing products, or for legal services we have bylaw lawyers, litigation lawyers, real estate lawyers, etc.

to place your Trades & Services Directory ad

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and follow the link


  • CMHC  Condominium Buyers Guide
  • Seminars for condominium buyers

www.cmhc.ca


Canadian Condominium Institute

  • seminars
  • events
  • newsletters
  • local chapters

www.cci.ca


  • For CM100, CM200, and CM300 seminar dates and locations visit the websites

www.cci-south.ab.ca 

www.cci-north.ab.ca  

(9, 12 and 15 RECA credits respectively)


Betty's Condo Owners Club

Betty's Condo Owners Club member benefits:

  • seminars for owners, board members, etc. on a variety of topics
  • provide a place where owners can communicate and ask questions -"the condo web log" www.condo-check.blogspot.com
  • information specific to seniors
  • the availability to purchase templates for things like bylaw enforcement letters and budgets
  • special savings to club members on a variety of services (including the document review service)
  • contests

become a member today - www.condoownersclub.com


Past E-Magazine Issues

Mould in Buildings
 
March 2005
Copy of Bill C-45
 
April 2005
Condo Rage
 
May 2005
Risk Management  Protocol System
 
June 2005
Practicle tips for Running a Condominium Meeting


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Condominium
Events 2005


Monthly TeleSeminars through Betty's Condo Owners Club.  Don't miss the opportunity to dial in and listen to an information filled condominium seminar.

 
 
 10 Secrets to Surviving Life in a Condominium 
(live the dream - not the nightmare) 

Bernie Winter F.C.C.I and Louise Challes 

available in:  e-book format  or in  Print 
volume discounts available

Order your Book Copy      


Betty's Condo Owners Club presents

Next Condo Owners Forum

Thursday October 20, 2005 - “No Charge

Proudly Sponsored by Larlyn Property Management Ltd.
 
the Condo Owners Forum held April 20, 2005 was attended by 89 people who brought a great range of questions.  This event was such a success we have been asked to organize another.  Betty's Condo Owners Club is committed to getting information to condominium owners and is therefore organizing the event for October 20, 2005.  We are open to suggestions of who you would like to see on the panel.  Please submit your suggestions for topics and industry professionals for the panel  to bernie-winter@shaw.ca
 
We suggest you forward your question in advance or bring your questions in writing; this way if we don't have time to respond to them all we can post a response in the Condo Owners web log www.condo-check.blogspot.com

To register


Seminars for Real Estate professionals approved by RECA for continuing education credits:

Listing & Selling Resale Condominiums in Alberta (6 credits)

This 6 hour seminar focuses on the condominium legislation, the rights of the buyers, the duties of the salesperson, and the importance of the documentation required when listing or selling a condominium in Alberta.

  • For registration contact the Calgary Real Estate Board

Listing & Selling New Construction and Conversion Condominiums in Alberta (6 credits)

This 6 hour seminar focuses on the legislation that governs the liability of the sales representative and the developer of new or conversion condominiums in Alberta.  This course is a must for anyone who sells projects or the occasional new or conversion unit. 

  • For registration contact the appropriate Real Estate Board


This FREE ezine is brought to you monthly by

Condo-Check

 

Two locations in Alberta to serve you: 

South Alberta

  • Calagary and area
  • (403) 509-2462

Central & North Alberta

  • Edonton and area
  • (403) 309-0378
  • 1-888-309-0377

www.condo-check.com