The Community Associations Network blog posted a nice piece on Friday wishing a Happy Canada Day to those of us north of the border. In that post, CAN’s president, a Michigander named Joe West, explains why he includes Canadian stories in his excellent condo law newsfeed and blog lists, apparently in answer to a question asked by his readers.

The answer is worth reading, but the question itself gives us some pause.  

Most American condo law blogs pay little attention to condo law and news from the Great White North, perhaps for any number of good reasons, but Joe quite rightly recognizes the importance of looking elsewhere for ideas in how to improve things close to home. That’s a good point, considering that while the laws in our respective countries are considerably different, there are many common issues facing condominiums and community associations on both sides of the border. Some include:

  • Preventing fraud by directors, managers and others;
  • The nascent movement to restrict smoking in multi-unit residential buildings;
  • Ensuring financial security in the face of difficulty economic times; 
  • How to persuade government to enact protective laws;
  • Enforcing the documents in people, pets and parking cases;
  • Enhancing home values through prudent maintenance and repair;
  • Forging strong community bonds and good neighbourship;
  • And so many more.

Condos and community associations are, at their essence, an important and popular way for many millions of North Americans to live and co-exist. Finding, sharing and delivering information to help the homeowners and directors of those associations and the professionals, trades and others that serve those folks remains important.  The line on the map between our two counties is remarkably unimportant by comparison.

Canadian condominium professionals and enthusiasts are wise to keep watching developments in the United States. To do that effectively, follow CAN’s newsfeed and peruse the impressive list of community association blogs showcased on their website, many of which we have highlighted from time to time.

Best wishes for a happy Fourth of July to all our American friends and neighbours.