The Condominium Management Regulatory Authority of Ontario (CMRAO) is proposing licensing fees for condo managers and condo management firms that would see the two groups share the costs of regulating the sector 50-50, according to a survey posted on its website yesterday asking for input. The licensing fees are designed to deliver the revenue required to administer the new legislation that will soon govern the industry, the Condominium Management Services Act, which the not-for-profit corporation is projected to do on an annual operating budget of roughly $2.4 million.
The proposed fee model aims to recover 50 per cent of the CMRAO’s operating costs from condo managers and 50 per cent of the CMRAO’s operating costs from condo management firms because the administrative authority expects its resources to be evenly split between regulating the two groups.
The CMRAO is proposing that condo managers pay annual licensing fees based on their class of license. A limited license, which comes with conditions including that the license holder be supervised, would cost $379. A transitional general license, for condo managers that have two or more years of experience, would cost $607. A general license, for condo managers that have two or more years of experience and have fulfilled education requirements, would also cost $607.
The CMRAO is proposing that condo management firms pay a base annual licensing fee of $799, plus $350 per condo manager it employs. The per-condo-manager fee is designed to reflect the size of condo management firm as a matter of fairness.
The per-condo-manager fee is to be paid by the condo management firm, not the condo manager, and will not be reimbursed if a manager leaves the firm soon after the annual renewal period in June, according to frequently asked questions accompanying the survey on the proposed fees. However, while condo managers are to pay their own licensing fees, the condo management firm that employs them is free to reimburse them.
In the absence of solid numbers on the size of the sector, the proposed fee model assumes a “conservative estimate” of 2,000 condo managers and 300 condo management firms.
Recognizing the additional expectations the new regulatory requirements will impose on condo managers and condo management firms, the CMRAO is developing an easy-to-use, self-serve online licensing system. The web-based application and payment process is also expected to contribute to a cost-effective licensing process by reducing staffing requirements at the CMRAO.
The CMRAO is scheduled to start operating Nov. 1, when licensing requirements are due to roll out. The administrative authority said it will accept feedback on the proposed licensing fees through its online survey until Aug. 10.