Canada's Condominium Magazine

Ontario government seeking public input on new condo management program

A year ago, the Protecting Condominium Owners Act, 2015 (PCOA), received Royal Assent in Ontario. That act made substantial amendments to the Condominium Act, 1998. It also enacts the Condominium Management Services Act, 2015 (CMSA), which will make it obligatory for all condominium managers to have certain qualifications. The Ministry of Government and Consumer Services is now asking for public input on the proposed regulation that will “support” implementation of the PCOA. Public feedback will be accepted until February 6, 2017. The ministry wants the regulation to come into effect on July 1, 2017.

The regulation concerns two main areas: the licensing of condominium managers and the regulation of the licensees. The first area describes the educational requirements and conditions required for condominium managers to become licensed. The second concerns the content of the licence and other administrative issues, such as the necessity of retaining business records, complaint procedures, and the availability of public information about licensees.

Building security is one area that falls within the condo manager’s responsibilities.

In response to the passing of the PCOA, George Brown College has partnered with the Association of Condominium Managers of Ontario (ACMO) to develop a course that leads to a condominium management certificate. A spokesperson for George Brown said that the course was geared to people who are currently in the industry and to those who are considering entering it.

The program consists of four compulsory courses: condominium law; condominium administration and human relations; financial planning; and physical building management. According to an instructor at George Brown, the condo law course is foundational and should be completed first. It will be offered beginning in January.

Upon completion of the four courses offered at George Brown College, candidates will have to write the Registered Condominium Manager (RCM) certification exam, which is administered by ACMO.

Half of all homes built in Ontario are condominiums. Condo management is considered a growth industry.

Being a condominium manager requires a range of skills that include administration, financial management, and people skills. Managers need to be familiar with, for example, the Condominium Act, the Canada Human Rights Act, the Occupational Health and Safety Act, as well as contract law and litigation, according to George Brown College. While managers don’t need to be experts in all of these areas, they need to know when to bring in the experts, such as lawyers and other professionals.

There are more than 10,000 condominium corporations in the province and about 3,000 condominium managers, of whom 950 are RCMs. Those who are already RCMs will still have to obtain the new licence being implemented under PCOA, though that could involve simply passing an exam. Condo management is considered a growth area, especially now that half of all new homes built in Ontario are condos.

Anyone interested in finding out more about the new condo management program or commenting on it by email can visit this link: http://www.ontariocanada.com/registry/view.do?postingId=23342&language=en

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