How Do Amendments to the Strata Property Act Impact You?
CATEGORY: Advocacy Practice Tips
TAGS: Age Restrictions Rental Restrictions Strata Properties Strata Property Act
On November 24, 2022, the BC Government passed amendments to the Strata Property Act, which take immediate effect. There are two significant changes impacting REALTORS® dealing with strata properties, as well as their clients:
- all rental restriction bylaws are removed, except for bylaws restricting short-term rentals such as Airbnb or Vrbo, and
- all age restriction bylaws are removed, with the exception of “seniors only” (55-plus) rules. This means that a strata will no longer be allowed to have 19-plus age restrictions.
This affects REALTORS® differently, depending on their area of practice.
For strata management services:
- advise your strata corporation clients that the Strata Property Act has been amended and the changes are currently in force,
- review the updated requirements in section 45(3) of the Strata Property Act if preparing a notice of an annual or special general meeting of a strata corporation,
- seek instructions from your clients in relation to amendments to the strata, and
- corporation’s bylaws are required to remove any unenforceable bylaws or any bylaws that contravene the Strata Property Act.
For trading services:
- advise your buyer or seller, where relevant, that the Strata Property Act has been amended,
- review strata bylaws for re-sale strata lots and/or Property Disclosure Statements for presale strata lots and strata lots purchased from a developer. Advise your clients to seek legal advice if they contain restrictions that are no longer compliant with the Strata Property Act, and
- if you are working with a potential buyer or seller that is under contract to purchase a rental or age-restricted property, advise them that the Strata Property Act has been amended and they may wish to seek legal advice.
For rental property management services licensees:
- advise your clients that the Strata Property Act has been amended, and ensure rental agreements that you manage on behalf of your clients comply with the amended legislation.
Additional changes to the Strata Property Act that were passed along with removing strata restrictions include:
- the requirement for an owner developer to file a rental disclosure statement (Form J) to explain strata rental rights is repealed,
- requirements for a notice of an annual or special general meeting of a strata corporation are expanded,
- requirements for an information certificate to include the number of rented strata lots in a strata plan is repealed,
- electronic meetings are now permanently permitted without the need for a bylaw, and
- secret ballots are not permitted at electronic meetings to ensure eligible voters and proxies are identified and calculated accurately.
Strata properties are a popular housing choice in BC. With over 1.5 million British Columbian living in strata housing, these changes may impact many consumers across the province. REALTORS® are responsible for staying on top of legislative changes impacting real estate to keep their clients informed.
- BC Financial Services Authority Advisory: Amendments to the Strata Property Act (November 28, 2022)
- BC Financial Services Announcement (November 21, 2022)
- Government news release (November 21, 2022)
- Building and Strata Statutes Amendment Act, 2022 (Third Reading)
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