The BC government’s Bill 44 amendments to the Strata Property Act are now in effect. These amendments end rental restrictions, all but one age restriction, and add the ability to hold virtual meetings without the need for a bylaw.
Here’s a quick overview of what these new rules will mean for people who own, or are looking to buy, strata properties.
- Stratas can no longer enforce rental restrictions. For example, if a strata has a bylaw restricting rentals to a certain percentage of units, they can no longer enforce this rule.
- This only applies to long-term rentals. Stratas can still enforce short-term rental restrictions.
- Renters still need to follow other strata bylaws.
- While owners currently renting out their units previously in contravention of a strata bylaw are no longer in breach of the bylaw, they are liable for any breach of a rental restriction prior to November 24, 2022 – when the amendments became law.
- There are now only two age-related options for stratas: a bylaw requiring at least one resident in a unit to be 55 years-old or older; or no age restriction bylaw.
- All other age restrictions are unenforceable, including restrictions for older or younger ages. For example, a strata requiring residents be 60 years old or older can no longer enforce this rule.
- This rule has no relation to rental restrictions – a 55+ strata can’t restrict rentals.
- Live-in caregivers are allowed to live in age-restricted stratas, including caregivers under the age of 55, regardless of current strata bylaws.
Virtual/electronic strata meetings
- Stratas can now conduct annual and special general meetings virtually without a bylaw explicitly allowing them to do so.
- The strata council chooses the format of the meeting, which the council must include in the notice sent to residents.
- Along with the date, time, and type of meeting, stratas must include instructions on how to attend.
- Stratas can use any electronic meeting tool so long as it allows all meeting participants to communicate with each other, and the chair can determine if the participants are eligible voters.
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