A hybrid management model
A condo tower with 380 residential units on Yonge Street is going to
try a new
model of management. If it works, it is a model that may catch on.
This condo had a contract with one of Toronto's bigger condo management
companies but there were problems with the manager and some of the
contractors. They shared the same ethnic background as the manager but
directors checked, some of the companies had no business addresses or
Finally, there was an unexplained removal of over $70,000 in
receivables that were quietly dropped from the monthly financial
records with no convincing explanation given.
The condo then hired another management company, it too is an ACMO-CCI
member and they seemed a better fit. However, they were too rigid in
their ways so the board began considering self-management.
Although many townhouse complexes are self-managed, there are few large
condo highrise towers that have tried this. Highrises are complicated
structures and it takes a lot of work managing and supervising all the
different trades and contractors that provide services for the
It is difficult to find owners who will put in the long hours setting
up a self-managed highrise and have the skills and knowledge to
managing the corporation. Then you need to worry about having a pool of
talent to replace the directors who move, resign or will not stand for
For these reasons, this condo board decided that a hybrid model, one
that combines the benefits that a management company offers combined
with the benefits that self-management offers would be best for them.
The condo corporation bought a condominium accounting software package
directors were trained on how to use it. So the software, computers and
the data belongs to the condo corporation and not to a management
The management functions have been broken into four parts.
The board hired a qualified property manager who works directly for the
Security and safety
An experienced security supervisor is responsible for some of the
A condo property management company has two office clerks on site who
deal with the residents, prepare status certificates and handle the
mail and correspondence.
A small accounting company generates the monthly financial statements
and the other back room services.
The board will put most of the contracts out for tender and accept the
For this to work, the board needs to be a true board and not merely
management puppets that exist in many condo corporations. The
board must make informed decisions and the manager and the others must
follow the board's instructions.