Strata punished for inaction on leaky skylights impacting multiple owners

Apr 12 2023, 5:47 pm

Multiple property owners in BC decided to take the building’s strata to court over leaky skylights.

Two different owners in different units took the strata in question to court, with both demanding that the leaky skylights be replaced immediately as well as any building damages that were a result of the delay in the skylight repair.

While both owners suggested the strata was to blame, the strata said at a tribunal hearing in a small claims case the question of who was responsible for repairs was a “long-running issue.”

Catherine Jensen and Éloïse Forest-Allard were the two lot owners who took the strata to court in two different hearings.

Forest-Allard co-owned a unit with three leaky skylights that she claimed had “lost their integrity.”

She sought an order that the strata would replace the skylights within a year and another order that the strata would be responsible for future maintenance of the skylights.

According to the court docs, photos submitted for evidence showed that the skylights were integrated into the roof. The tribunal member overseeing the case determined that the roof above the units constituted “common property.”

Jensen was in a unit with two leaky skylights that needed replacement and requested an order that the strata replace them immediately. Jensen added that her skylights began leaking in 2014 or 2015 and that the strata temporarily repaired them with caulking. However, the skylights started “leaking heavily” in November 2021 and have been covered with tarps ever since.

Jensen couldn’t prove her claim about damage caused by the leaky skylights, but the tribunal member still ordered the strata to repair the skylights within four months. The strata was also on the hook for Jensen’s CRT fees of $225.

In the case of Forest-Allard, she claimed her skylights began to fail in 2020 and asked the strata to replace them. Like the Jensen decision, the tribunal decided that the strata needed to replace the skylights within four months. The strata was also responsible for Forest-Allard’s CRT fees of $250.

Amir AliAmir Ali

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