AdministratorApril 10, 2022 at 9:24 am
GibsonT (aka TerryG) wrote “We have to recognize that our management of condos is part of the issue.”
Having observed one condominium for 19 years (mine) and learned about others through attending educational programmes, I can only agree. I’ve learned several points, which may encourage corporations and their boards to change:
- Preventive maintenance helps reduce premiums (insurance companies consider the quality of board operations) and prevents ‘disasters’, often related to water damage.
- Pre-emptive cleaning of sewage and drainage systems regularly may look expensive but averts claims and clean-up costs after an event. Recently, our corporation has used a drain cleaner to ensure bathroom and kitchen drains are clear before cleaning out the stacks and the sewer connections to the city facilities.
- Owners and other occupants need to be aware of their responsibilities and liabilities if they cause problems.
- Leaving a window open in winter or turning down the thermostat may allow a heating system to freeze and burst, affecting many units at the cost of the owner or occupant of the offending unit as well as the corporation. Our corporation installed bypass valves to ensure a little water flows continuously in the baseboard heating system, even if the thermostat is set to ‘cold’.
- Turn off a washing machine hose at the wall to prevent a leak affecting units below the offending apartment.
- Check the overflow outlet on a bathtub – unless it is tight to the tub, water may escape and flood downstairs units.
- Boards face ever-increasing costs. Deductibles soar, and extreme (weather) events cause greater problems that need to be paid for from insurance funds. Adding a budget item that creates an ‘insurance deductible reserve’ within the operating budget could soften the blow from a catastrophe and avert a Special Levy.
- Our corporation actively requests copies of owners’ insurance documents to check that owners have adequate coverage, especially for deductibles that the corporation may pass on to owners. I don’t know if this is legal, but it makes sense. I send a copy of my corporation’s insurance to my insurance company and ensure that I have coverage for the big difference between my and the corporation’s deductibles.
- Some owners believe that the corporation’s insurance covers their unit and their belongings. It doesn’t. Owners and tenants/renters need to get their own insurance.