Legally Speaking

Strata Termination Update #521

A year ago in Legally Speaking No. 509, I described two Supreme Court of British Columbia cases that addressed whether a strata corporation must first pass an 80% vote (sometimes called a “winding-up resolution”) before strata council may list the whole complex for sale with a brokerage or enter a contract to sell the entire

When Cooperatives Become Uncooperative #520

When we think of residential occupation, our minds turn to fee simple ownership, strata property ownership or maybe rental occupation. A lesser known but growing form of housing is cooperative housing under the Cooperative Association Act SBC 1999 c.28 (“Act”). Unlike strata ownership, members of a cooperative do not own a specific unit. Members of

Back-Up Offers: There’s a Clause for That #519

Roughly twice a year my heart stops when a claim comes to my attention. Why? Because a licensee reports that the seller has sold the property twice! Naturally, the seller is upset. They only have one property to sell and two buyers demanding it.  In these instances, the seller typically accepts an offer for the

Strata Parking May Get Simpler #518

In its newest report (the “Report”), the British Columbia Law Institute’s formidable committee of strata experts (the “Committee”) recommends more changes to the Strata Property Act (the “Act”). If adopted, these changes will make it easier for a REALTOR® to confirm how strata parking is designated. 1 Background Depending on the circumstances, a strata parking

The First Law of Holes #517

Will Rogers defined the first law of holes as follows: “When you find yourself in a hole; stop digging.” A recent discipline decision of the Real Estate Council of British Columbia1 suggests the licensee involved should have taken Mr. Rogers’ advice. The licensee acted as the designated agent of the seller in the sale of

Pitfalls in Transactions Involving Strata Condominiums #516

A recent Civil Resolution Tribunal decision1 highlights some important practice points for licensees in transactions involving strata condominiums. The buyer of a strata condominium claimed against the seller’s agent in misrepresentation and false advertising arising from the description of the building as having a “fully rainscreened exterior” in the MLS® listing. The buyer was surprised

Liability For Strata Insurance Deductibles #515

Many strata owners do not know they may be personally liable to reimburse their strata corporation for its insurance deductible, the portion of the loss the insured must pay in an insurance claim, which can be many thousands of dollars. The British Columbia Law Institute’s formidable committee of strata experts (the “Committee”) recently recommended changes

Death at a Property Revisited #514

In 2007, a man was murdered outside the gates of his Shaughnessy home. The murder, described by the police as a targeted killing, remains unsolved. The victim lived in the home with his wife and two children. The property was owned by his mother-in-law, who resided in China. One of his daughters attended a private