Alberta is now in the process of moving to require a licensed property manager in all condominium buildings. These changes are a significant step that will certify that our multi-family condominiums are maintained properly — both in terms of physical upkeep as well as ensuring that the financial records are being properly documented.
During this period of transition, we recommend that all condo board members objectively review how their property is being managed. We will provide a high-level overview of the obligations of a condo board members and a list of the property management services that Braden Equities Inc. can provide.Once everything is licensed, it will be harder to offer reckless and unprofessional opinions in the management of Alberta condominium buildings. Facts and financials alone will help condo board members make the best decisions on behalf of all the building’s residents.
If your current property management company is not yet licensed, the industry professionals at Braden Equities Inc. want to emphasize that the transition to a licensed property management company is easy.
Responsibilities of Condo Board Member in Alberta
Ultimately, it is the responsibility of all condominium board members to honour their fiduciary duty and to make timely prudent decisions based on the professional opinions they get. There is a risk of not acting in the best interests of all residents: condo board members can be held personally liable if their actions appear to disproportionately benefit them personally.
Once the condo board has determined that hiring a property management company is the right choice, the only remaining question is which company should they hire?
Established Property Management: Braden Equities Inc.
Braden Equities Inc. has been successfully managing condominium buildings in Edmonton since the 1970s. A lot has changed since then, but our commitment to the residents living in each building we manage has not.
Some buildings may not have a property management company yet, and some may need to change the company they are currently working with. In our experience, these are the properties that need immediate help.
When Braden Equities Inc. assumes the role of a management company we are there to manage the daily operations of the building to take that burden away from the condo board members. We will direct the property maintenance and landscapers. And we will coordinate the building’s budget, including reserve fund studies and condo fee assessments.
Benefits of Hiring a Property Management Company for a Condominium
- Reassurance: A formal contract with your property management company is vital. If you don’t sign an agreement, you’re unprotected and so is your investment.
- Audit: Usually the board members will not be required to perform a full audit when they have been consistently using a property management company. (A Financial review is approximately $2,500, while a full audit can exceed $12,000).
- Accountability: When you enter into a contract, the benefits and services promised are guaranteed in writing.
- Rental Pools: Deciding to rent out your property can be confusing, especially if it’s your first time. There are a lot of considerations that need to be made and some that aren’t immediately apparent. Your management contract should function as a guide through the process — what concerns can arise and how they’ll be dealt with.
- Reserve Fund Studies: You will be expected to put a specific amount of money into a reserve fund that the property manager can access to deal with daily obligations and emergencies. You are also responsible for making sure that fund never falls below a specific amount.
- Liability: Reduced risk to the condo board, it moves the liability away from the board members. Braden Equities Inc. gives consulting advice based on their experience as a management company.
- Contract Duration/Termination: You will want to carefully review the termination clause to ensure that you can terminate the contract if you are unhappy with the service. We include a penalty-free exit clause, which the condo board is free to change within 30-60 days notice.
- Services and Fees: You need to understand what services are included in the management fee, what services can be performed for an additional fee and what services will not be performed under any circumstances.
Our standard services that are included in our condominium property management contract have been included below:
Braden Equities Inc. Condominium Property Management Services:
- Braden Equities Inc. is a licensed broker in Alberta
- Competent, trained property managers are provided
- Establish a formal, transparent documentation procedure
- Solutions that save money and create efficiency
- Specialized financial statements
- Ensure all financial transactions are at arms-length
- Short and long-term goal setting for common area operating expenses
- Preparation of comprehensive preliminary budgets for board analysis
- Expert enforcement of bylaws and tenant control
- Short and long-term goal setting for reserve fund replacements
- Special levies for capital investment can also be managed: parkades, exterior windows, etc.
- Timely responses to owner inquiries
- On-call 24/7 for all emergency situations
- Hands-free operation for the board members
The condo board simply needs to give the go-ahead and the professionals at Braden Equities will coordinate the transition: Including writing up the termination notice for the current management company (if required). We will also follow-up with the data collection through contacting the previous property manager.
Because our property managers understand that the real clients are the residents of the condominium building, we will strive to make the transition to our management services as seamless as possible.
As we like to say: “Change is easy.”