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What To Look for When Reviewing Strata Documents

What To Look for When Reviewing Strata Documents

When considering buying a Nanaimo condo for sale, it's recommended that you carefully review strata documentation on the condo or townhome. Part of the buying process, when buying a condo, is to familiarize yourself with how well run the condo complex is.

Strata documents tell you about the financial health of a condo or townhome development, the condition of the common property, including its major systems, any rules or regulations that must be adhered to by the owner of the property, and insights on how the strata are managed.

The following strata documents listed below contain the most relevant and essential information that will help you make your decision on whether to move forward with a purchase. As a prospective Buyer these documents help individuals better understand their future homes so its important to do some reading.

Form B

Form B, also known as the information certificate, lists what exactly you are getting with your strata unit. Typically, the form is requested when someone is considering buying a strata lot but doesn't want any unpleasant surprises in missing features or fees. Inside Form B, you will find details confirming the strata fee, features like parking stalls, restrictions on rentals, or if the unit has storage lockers.

Financial information regarding that specific strata unit and the building is also available in form B, with details such as the contingency reserve fund or any levies or assessments owed by the strata unit in question.

Engineering and depreciation report

Strata are run by a strata council who sometimes can hire an engineering company to conduct inspections on the units at specific dates. The engineers comb through the entire building looking for signs of premature breakdowns and deficiencies covered by the warranty. The depreciation report outlines how the major components of the strata will function during its lifetime. The report will find information about what repairs and maintenance the building will need over time and how and if the reserve fund will cover the expenses. It also contains information on whether the reserve fund has enough money to cover the cost or if you can expect levies in the future.

Strata meeting minutes Since strata units are under an elected strata council, regular monthly meetings are carried out where strata meeting minutes are documented. In the document, you can find previous repairs and maintenance records, complaints on rule violations, and if the expenses are on target. You can also see earlier improvements on the building like security or crimes like unit-break-ins that have occurred. Generally we try to get minutes that date back two years as well as minutes from the Annual General meetings and any special meetings that are held.

Bylaws and rules

In accordance with the Canadian Strata Property Act, the strata council can set bylaws and rules on their units, but they are not enforceable to the extent that they: contravene the Strata Property Act, regulations, the Human rights code, or any other enactment of the law. In the bylaws and rules documents, you will find out what is or isn't allowed in the strata, which can affect investors in the form of rental restrictions or families because there could be age restrictions. For instance, strata's are limiting the number of units that can be rented at any one time as well as rules on things such as pets or modifications to the strata unit are becoming more common in Canada.

When looking to buy a condo home, it's highly advisable to go through the different strata documents to understand better what you are buying. From rules and regulations, unit improvement and depreciation, to strata monthly and annual general meeting minutes, the documents give all the details on the unit, including financial information. Reading these documents carefully may help you avoid unexpected issues after purchasing the unit.

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