Condo, Strata and HOA News

Compulsory Board Education for Condominiums, Strata and HOAs

In 2008 Florida enacted mandatory education for condominium boards. From some accounts the move has been an overwhelming success, and to others it has been simply more paperwork.

Having argued that the housing represents the largest asset, and form of enforced savings, that all but a few people will ever have – extra diligence and care should be taken by boards in managing condominium and HOA complexes. A poorly educated board can cause significant hardship to a huge amount of people, and jeopardize their financial well-being with only a few poor decisions.

To that, I fully support some sort of mandatory education process even though this is a volunteer, non-profit organization. I recognize this education requirement is more restrictive than business boards which have no mandatory requirements.

It is important to realize that this is mostly an issue for self-managed condominiums or those that don’t retain a paid manager at their board meetings.

A condominium management company fulfill the need for mandatory education. Management companies (generally) have exceptionally qualified individuals who know the local and federal legislation, and are trained in manners of ethics and process. They act as an in-person book of knowledge for boards. They are the best resource (and are worth a lot of the management contract cost) for a board.

But for those that don’t have a manager at their board meetings, training of the members is essential.

For disclosure, I serve on the Canadian Condominium Institute’s National Executive; teach condominium board education classes through the CCI, and our Ontario chapters in conjunction with ACMO have presented opinion to the provincial government supporting director education.

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