Who is guiding your condominium and trying to steer it clear of that proverbial iceberg?
Who makes the decisions at the top and how much power does he or she have?
Every building is different, but if you look hard enough, you’ll see some dictatorships on the horizon…
With an increasing frequency, I hear condominium owners complaining, “My condo-board president is the biggest this-and-that…”
Nobody seems to like the president of their condo board, or the entire board for that matter.
It’s truly a thankless job, and every condo-owner thinks that he or she could do the job twice as good, but of course, never steps forward to make an attempt…
Having served as vice-president of a condo board, I know all to well what kind of crap we put up with.
Recently, an owner in the building threatened to take us to court because we closed the rooftop patio for winter. We exchanged letters before it got to this point, but there was no reasoning with this condo owner with respect to our position.
We told him that the rooftop terrace would be closed for winter, as per the rules set forth by the condominium corporation.
He responded by with a variety of woulda, coulda, shoulda’s.
We explained that the costs associated with maintaining an outdoor terrace during the winter were prohibitive.
We would need to pay for snow removal on the roof; something we didn’t account for in our budget, nor did we purchase shovels and hire an extra body to clear the snow away.
We would have to salt the terrace to prevent ice from forming, and who knows what kind of long-term effects this salt would have on the outdoor tile.
We would have constantly mop the steep stairs that lead to the rooftop; a major slip-and-fall lawsuit waiting to happen, if you ask me.
And the 14th floor hallways would likely be ruined with residents sloshing their wet boots between the staircase that leads up to the terrace and the elevator.
Despite all this, the condo owner still challenged our position, and referenced 2-3 other condos in the city which have a year-round rooftop terrace. He never mentioned that these buildings were 500+ units and ours was a mere 138…
I’ve been on both sides of the “evil board of directors” equation.
I’ve seen how residents can argue in favor of their own personal tastes and opinions even if it isn’t in the best interests of the corporation, and I’ve asked out loud “what the hell is going on in this building” with respect to my own condominium.
Consider the recent “renovations and upgrades” to my home at 230 King Street.
About two weeks ago, we were notified that the lobby would be undergoing an extensive facelift. The work would take about three weeks to complete, and it would be “a constant disruption to all residents” as stated in the letter from the property manager.
The work would entail removing the old tile and replacing it with new tile.
But most residents wondered the same thing: “What the heck was wrong with the old tile?”
I’ve never once complained about the state of our lobby; in fact, I consider it to be the nicest lobby of ALL condominiums in the St. Lawrence Market area.
So why are we replacing the tile?
I’m not sure.
Somebody at “the top” decided the lobby needed the work, and thus the work is taking place.
Here is what our lobby has looked like for the past two weeks:
We have to access our building through the side entrance on Sherbourne or through the back door next to the garbage room off Adelaide.
Our concierge is wearing a protective mask on his face for every minute of his eight-hour shift.
And for what?
To put in the exact same tile as we had before?
I’m not joking here, folks. It’s identical.
Here is a look at the hallway in the lobby leading to the elevator, and the OLD tile – which, keep in mind, is covered in dirty and dust:
Now look at the NEW tile that they used to replace the OLD tile:
One might say, “It’s exactly the same.”
I know….I said that!
I had an elevator-sized conversation (nine seconds) with a couple of residents about the “new” tile, and we all agreed there is essentially no difference.
Maybe the new tile is made of a revolutionary material that can only be found on the moon, but I don’t care.
If 99% of the residents can’t tell the difference, then why did we bother?
Maybe those photos don’t do my story justice.
Perhaps the new tile looks a lot more shiny because my photography skills are somewhat lacking. Sorry….but it’s 11:45PM on Sunday night and I want to go to bed! Should I run back downstairs and take a better photo? Hmmmm……no, I’ll pass…
The “new” tiles are the same size, shape, and color as the “old tiles.”
Are they of the same material? I’m just about certain that they are.
But even if they aren’t, the lobby will look no different when the “renovation” is complete.
I hope the captain of this ship isn’t steering us on a wrong course.
It certainly wouldn’t be the first time…