B.C. Municipal Affairs and Housing Minister Selina Robinson takes questions on changes to strata insurance rules, B.C. legislature, June 23, 2020. (B.C. government)

B.C. changing rules as strata property insurance costs rise

Law to end referral fees, limit what needs to be insured

The B.C. government is making changes to strata property and financial rules to deal with the soaring cost of insurance for multi-family buildings.

Amendments introduced in the B.C. legislature June 23 would require strata corporations to inform owners about insurance coverage, including increased deductibles, and allow strata councils to use their contingency funds to pay for unexpected insurance increases.

Municipal Affairs and Housing Minister Selina Robinson proposed the changes after its new regulator reviewed the insurance situation. The B.C. Financial Services Authority (BCFSA) reported June 16 that strata insurance costs in B.C. have increased an average of 40 per cent, and some deductibles have more than doubled in the past year.

Robinson and Finance Minister Carole James said the changes will end the practice of referral fees paid by insurers or brokers to property managers, and set clear guidelines for what strata corporations are required to insure.

Robinson said the changes will close “loopholes” in the regulations that have allowed strata depreciation reports to be avoided, and change the minimum required contributions from strata unit owners and developers to a strata corporation contingency fund.

RELATED: Poor construction, maintenance driving up rates

RELATED: Strata councils allowed to go online for meetings

The BCFSA found that minor claims, many from water damage in new construction or due to a lack of maintenance, have made strata insurance unprofitable for insurance companies. Earthquake risk in B.C. has also prompted insurers to reduce the amount of coverage they provide.

James and Robinson emphasized that the changes are a first step in dealing with a situation seen internationally.

“People realize there isn’t a quick fix,” James said.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislature

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Wrangler’s new president Greg Aiken preparing for an uncertain season

‘We’re hoping there’s going to be hockey but we also don’t want to endanger anyone’s health’

Helen Horn climbs the Lone Butte at 96 with help from friends and family

‘I did as I was told and I enjoyed every minute of it’

Traffic violators caught and charged by RCMP throughout June

Canim Lake the scene of many, thankfully, false alarms this month

Owner looks to rezone property in Lac la Hache

The existing number of dwellings are not allowed under the current zoning

VIDEO: Musqueam Chief captures captivating footage of bald eagle catching meal

‘This is why we have chosen to live here since time immemorial,’ Chief Wayne Sparrow’s nephew says

Okanagan school drops ‘Rebels’ sports team name, citing links with U.S. Civil War

Name and formerly-used images “fly in the face” of the district’s human rights policy, says board chair

PHOTOS: B.C.’s top doc picks up personalized Fluevog shoes, tours mural exhibition

Murals of Gratitude exhibit includes at least one portrait of Henry alongside paintings of health-care workers

In troubled times: Independence Day in a land of confusion

Buffeted by invisible forces and just plain worn out, the United States of America celebrates its 244th birthday

Stop enforcing sex work laws during COVID-19, advocates say

There are provisions in Canada’s prostitution laws that make workers immune from prosecution, but not from arrest

Liberal party finished 2019 having spent $43 million, raised $42 million

All political parties had until midnight June 30 to submit their financial reports for last year

B.C. teacher loses licence after sexual relationships with two recently-graduated students

The teacher won’t be allowed to apply for a teaching certificate until 2035

White-throated sparrows have changed their tune, B.C. study unveils

Study marks an unprecedented development scientists say has caused them to sit up and take note

Most Read