Realtor Robert Buckler saw a void in the condominium market and stepped in to fill it.
Buckler founded Beredan Management & Consulting Inc. in 2009 to help fellow Realtors, condo corporations, developers, management companies and others to navigate the confusing world of condominiums. He offers training and seminars and acts as a court-appointed administrator in extreme cases to settle disputes between condo owners and their boards and to get condo corporations back on track.
Prior to launching his management and consulting business, Buckler was employed in various business roles, including with a condo property management company. A full-service sales rep with Century 21 Heritage Group in Thornhill, Ont., Buckler specializes in residential condominiums. He has also edited courses for the Canadian Condominium Institute.
His varied experience makes him well-suited to his role as court-appointed administrator, where he acts as a third party, takes over from the board and does what needs to be done to protect investment and property, Buckler says.
Problems between owners and condo boards often revolve around maintenance fees. One of the most common promises people make to be elected to the condo board is to keep maintenance fees low, or to lower fees, he says. When they get elected, fees are kept low or lowered and everyone is happy until several years later, when the reserve is depleted and the building has an operating deficit.
Another problem is when decisions are made to put off major repairs, or to take shortcuts with repairs such as not hiring legitimate contractors. The introduction of the HST caused problems for buildings that did not budget for the extra tax.
There’s no prescribed process, but administrators such as Buckler would map out a transition process, getting ready for the election of a new board and then mentoring the board. Buckler offers a course for condo directors. Topics of discussion include where the director’s role begins and ends, and where management begins and ends, he says.
When Buckler feels it’s time, he goes back to court and outlines how he has worked with the board, shows its progress and that they’re ready to take over.
With condominiums forming such a large part of the market, it’s important for Realtors to know how to protect their clients, says Buckler.
He was recently asked by Ontario’s Ministry of Consumer Services to participate in Stage 2 of the Condominium Act Review as a member of the Governance Work Group, co-chair of the Condominium Management Work Group, and as a member of the Expert Panel. He is one of only two Realtors in the group, out of about 40 participants.
His volunteer efforts include the City of Vaughan property Standards Committee, the Toronto Real Estate Board’s Condominium Committee and the Professional Development Committee of the Association of Condominium Managers of Ontario.
For information: www.beredan.com.