The province of Alberta is joining the ranks of jurisdictions that will require professional condominium managers to hold a license. After a period of consultation with stakeholders, the provincial government amended the Alberta Real Estate Act in late 2014 to establish a legal framework to license community association managers. The Act empowers the Real Estate Council of Alberta to regulate activity of condominium managers. The provincial government also took efforts to ensure that any licensing regime imposed, would attempt to coordinate with neighboring British Columbia to minimize impacts on business.
The process moved forward in 2015 with the appointment of a Condominium Implementation Advisory Committee. The committee consists of three condominium managers, to condominium owners, two industry experts, a member of the Canadian Condominium Institute, a member of the Alberta Condominium Managers Association and a representative of the Real Estate Council of British Columbia. The implementation advisory committee worked to produce a draft consultation paper for public comment during 2015. The consultation paper was issued in the fall of 2015 with comments due by December 9, 2015.
The initial consultation paper set forth broad rules to implement and govern a licensing regime. Areas covered by the paper included:
- Requirements of licensure
- Definition of “Condominium Management Services” to be regulated
- Pre-licensing education and testing requirement
- Accounting requirements
- Required insurance
- Penalties for the unlicensed practice of condominium management
At present the committee and RECA are reviewing comments submitted to the consultation paper and will likely follow up in early 2016 with final rules. The goal is to have a licensing regime implemented by the end of 2016. As with other jurisdictions which have imposed a professional licensing requirement, such regulation adds to the cost of obtaining qualified condominium managers. These impacts are balance against greater consumer protections for condominium boards and residents.
As a global leader in community management, Associa has experience with working with state and provincial governments to address challenges that manager licensing creates for business and consumers. Associa submitted extensive comments on the consultation paper and will continue to work with provincial leaders to ensure that whatever program is finally implemented, it will provide the most efficient means of ensuring qualified professional managers for Alberta condominium residents.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Andrew S. Fortin is the Senior Vice President of External Affairs for Associa. He works to engage government officials, the media and clients in building stronger community associations and help shape laws that support vibrant community associations.
DID YOU KNOW?
Community associations lose millions of dollars annually to small and large scale acts of theft. Associa protects community associations from fraud using an innovative approach through our Client Shared Services Center. Click the button below to learn about how communities across the world benefit from Associa's Shared Services Center or click here to request a proposal.