First time strata owners
Strata properties are a popular housing choice in B.C. for the convenience, security, added amenities and good value. About one quarter of B.C. residents live in strata housing. There are many different kinds of strata from duplexes to apartment style condos, even single family homes in "strata subdivisions" (bareland strata properties).
It is important to consider the lifestyle and financial responsibilities when deciding if strata living is the right choice for you.
Strata developments are in many ways micro communities that require working with your neighbours to manage your strata corporation and common property under the democratic framework of strata legislation. The strata corporation will have bylaws and rules, which affect the strata lot owners’ rights and responsibilities and set out what the strata corporation will be like to live in. Different strata will often have different bylaws and rules.
The financial responsibilities for owning a strata property are similar to owning a house, but strata owners also share common expenses for property and assets they own with other strata lot owners including repair and maintenance. Strata owners must pay strata fees and sometimes special levies.
Several organizations offer useful information for strata buyers to review:
- The BC Chapter of the Canadian Bar Association has information about buying into a strata property. Find out more in "Buying a Condominium."
- The Licensing & Consumer Services (formally Homeowner Protection Office) provides practical information to help consumers make informed decisions about their new home purchase, including strata housing. Learn more in "Buying a New Home in British Columbia: A Consumer Protection Guide" (PDF).
- The Real Estate Council of British Columbia provides useful information to help buyers understand procedures normally involved in the purchase of a home, to recognize the significance of the documents a buyer will encounter, and to understand the role of other people who may be involved in the transaction. Learn more in "Buying a Home in British Columbia."
Find it fast: a site map listing all tstrata housing pages and subpages.
The information on this website about strata housing is provided for the user’s convenience as a basic starting point; it is not a substitute for getting legal advice. Learn more about the site’s purpose and limits. The content on this website is periodically reviewed and updated by the Province of British Columbia as per the date noted on each page: February 2015.