City of Guelph Incentive Programs for Multi-Residential Buildings and Townhouse Condominiums
The City of Guelph has introduced two new programs to help multi-residential buildings become more water efficient. As part of the City of Guelph Water Efficiency Strategy, they identified that many multi-residential properties are often high consumers of water. To help meet their municipal water efficiency targets they have studied and developed these new programs to encourage a transition to lower water use in these buildings.
The first of these programs is the FREE Multi-Residential Water Audit Program:
For multi-residential buildings with ≥ 7 units or more, a free water audit is available. The audit includes:
- An in-unit review of plumbing fixtures, appliances, leak detection on a sample set of suites;
- A 24-48 hour diurnal analysis of water demand through the billing meter;
- Submetering and evaluation of a facility’s process water (where appropriate); and
- A final report outlining water demand and tailored recommendations for water efficient upgrades.
The facility then becomes eligible for rebates/incentives to complete upgrades through Blue Built Home, Water Smart Business and/or Residential Sub-Water Meter Rebate Program.
Buildings that participate in these programs are eligible for incentives toward water saving appliance upgrades, like improved controls for cooling towers, swimming pools, low flow 3 L toilets and many other improvements that will help the building become more water efficient.
One of the most exciting complementary new programs is the new Residential Sub-Water Meter Rebate Program:
- Rebate of $125 for permanently installed sub-water meter (typical of sub-metering for multi-residential buildings*).
- Rebate of $100 per add-on smart meter, such as that of the Civic Accelerator Alert Labs ‘Flowie’ (single family qualify).
This program is so exciting because it offers the incentive on a PER METER BASIS. This is critical because often a lot of high-rise buildings that are interested in submetering have multiple hot and cold water risers supplying water to their units. With this program, because the incentive is provided on a per meter basis, means that if you have multiple locations where the water enters your unit the incentive scales with the need for metering equipment.
This is an innovative strategy to encourage high rise buildings to participate in the program; however, only a certain amount of money has been allocated for the program and we don’t know how long the funding for this program will last since it applies to all multi-residential buildings in the city, including rental apartment buildings.
We are encouraging any townhouse or high rise condominium that has discussed water leaks or submetering in the past to make this topic a priority to discuss at your next board meeting or AGM. The first step in any water saving project is to have a free water audit done for your building by the city. To sign up simply fill out the online located here (https://guelph.ca/living/environment/rebates/multi-residential-water-audit-program/multi-residential-water-audit-program-application/) and the city staff will contact you to setup a time to perform the audit at your site.
Clean Cut Energy Corp. is a Guelph based submetering service provider and engineering firm located in the City of Guelph with extensive experience helping condominiums save money on water. Please feel free to call me at (226) 780-0284 x 101 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to discuss this in more detail.
Update re: Guelph Fair Tax Campaign
Attention Condominium Owners, Directors and Property Managers
Meeting on Thursday September 6, 2018, 7:00-8:30 pm
Location: M.F Property Office, 28 Bett Court, Guelph, N1C 0A5
Directions to M.F. Property: Bett Ct. off Hanlon Creek Boulevard from the Laird Rd turnoff from the Hanlon South (Hwy 6) or from south on Downey Rd. turn left onto Hanlon Creek Boulevard and then turn left onto Bett Ct.
If you have any concerns as a condo owner about how the City does or does not collect your garbage, you should attend!!
The Fair Tax Campaign-Guelph (FTC-G) needs a re-fresh or re-boot to represent your interests adequately. To become part of the improvement in Guelph services, represent your Condo Corp on FTC-Guelph.
We members of FTC-G are confessing that we have dropped the ball in representing the interests of Condo owners to the Councillors and City Staff of the City of Guelph. We are looking to reorganize with a new complement of Condo owners who can more effectively represent your interests with new enthusiasm, ideas and computer skills.
In November of 2017 Condo owners celebrated the City’s decision to provide front end loader collection to mid-rise and high-rise condominiums for 2018. The City is expecting the delivery of the truck in November or December of 2018, so there will be no Condo service before 2019. Between then and now there is a Municipal election in October that could change everything from a Council that unanimously supported improving solid waste collection for condominiums a year ago to a group less favourable to the idea. Condominium owners need to be visible during the October election, contacting their Councillors and Council aspirants about their attitudes toward the fairness of taxes charged to Condo owners for services the City can’t or won’t deliver. We need to be present at all the election debates and need to be asking questions from the floor as to when we get promised service. We need to be doing the same thing again in November and December with the new Council at Budget time for 2019.
The current FTC-G has run out of steam. I can’t do this anymore and I am resigning as Chairperson of FTC-G. The group that has been the executive of FTC-G has been doing this for over 11 years. New blood is needed to carry on this fight. Some members of the old FTC-G will stand for election at this meeting to join the new executive for FTC-G. I am willing to act as a consultant for an additional year, but the group needs new leadership and direction.
Here are some of the problems facing condominium owners for the future:
- Over half a year of service has been unavailable because the new front-end loader truck wasn’t ordered until mid-year even though the $300,000.00+ budget included a truck and driver for the whole of 2018. The service now won’t happen until the City takes delivery of the first front end loader truck in 2018, a second front end loader truck is put into the 2019 budget, the driver is trained and routes are established by the City for condominiums. Condominiums that can use the service will save thousands of dollars in condo fees over a year, but already a possible half year of service has been lost.
- Many Townhouse Condo owners can’t be serviced by the Robotic Arm Trucks and the new Front-end Loader Trucks and there are no plans in the May 2018 Service Plan to provide alternate service through smaller trucks and nesting bins like the old blue boxes as recommended by the 2014 Solid Waste Management Master Plan (SWMMP).
- The City is very self-satisfied with its current service level to condominiums. Even though no high-rise condos are being serviced and many townhouse condos complain of being unserviced, the City had a study completed in May of 2018 by an independent agency, Dillon Associates that shows 29,901 households and 18,530 out of 26,026 Condominium Units being happily serviced by the City. That’s 85% of the total households in the City being serviced. Dillon compared Guelph to 12 comparator cities like the Region of Waterloo, Essex-Windsor, Hamilton, Kingston, Peel, Niagara, Brantford, Barrie, Halton Region etc. and Guelph had one of the highest service ratings and was second highest in waste diversion from landfill. If you are one of the 7,496 condo units that have been left out of the City’s Service Plan until now, this glowing report is small consolation for the City’s inability to provide you with service all the rest of us get from our taxes. A strong stand and presence from FTC-G is needed by October 2018, if all these thousands of condo owners are going to get the solid waste service the rest of Guelph takes for granted. Come out and support your local Guelph branch of the Canadian Condominium Institute’s, Fair Tax Campaign.
- Getting information from the City Web site can be confusing. All the hundreds of pages of information and documents listed above can be found on the site. For the “May 2018 Solid Waste Resources Business Service Review” select Living, then Garbage and Recycling, then City shares Solid Waste Resources Business Review Final Report. The “2014 SWMMP” can be found under the Living Section under Environment, select Garbage and Recycling and then Resources Solid Waste Management Master Plan and then 2014 Solid Waste Management Master Plan -2MB.
I hope you find the above information useful and that you will come out to support Fair Tax Campaign-Guelph on Thursday September 6, at 7:00 pm.
Ted Pritchard, retired Chair of Fair Tax Campaign-Guelph, Home Phone 519 826-6121
Changes to Water Billing for Townhouse Condominiums in the City of Cambridge
Owners of townhouse condominiums in Cambridge, Ont., should prepare to change the way they pay for water use in the City of Cambridge. As part of a new water management plan, the city will no longer provide individual billing to townhouse condominium owners and will begin tracking and billing for water use by the entire complex instead.
In the next couple of months, many current water customers will start receiving letters in the mail indicating that the city will no longer provide them with individual water billing. As part of this transition, the city will negotiate a date for service transition, transfer ownership of the existing individual meters inside the complex to the condominium, and start reading water consumption for the property from a large meter at the property line.
Why is the city making this Change?
In most municipalities, the water meter is typically the physical “dividing line” between where the city’s responsibility to supply water ends and where the homeowner’s responsibility begins. Condominiums present a unique problem for water departments because there is often a lot of water pipe between where the water arrives on the property and the location of each unit’s water meter. This space between the property-line water connection and the water meter inside an individual unit is often described as an “infrastructure grey area.”
In the last couple of years, many municipalities have decided that they are no longer comfortable with this “grey area” in condominiums because it results in wasted water and lost revenue for the water system. To solve this problem, the City of Cambridge has decided to supply water meters only at the property line for new condominium complexes. In existing condominiums that already have individual city meters installed in each unit, the city typically “gifts” this equipment to the condominium. The condominium board can then hire a private submetering company like Clean Cut Energy to service the individual meters in their complex, or recover the cost of water bills in condominium fees.
Why move to Submetering?
Clean Cut Energy has been working with townhouse condominiums to solve water-billing problems for the past nine years. We have helped numerous condominiums seamlessly transition from public to private metering and save lots of money in the process. In many cases, Clean Cut Energy has been able to save condominiums thousands of dollars in water costs simply because we are able to provide this service at much lower cost than the city currently does. We are also able to help condominiums track water use more effectively, identify leaks and solve equipment problems that may occur inside their complex. Submetering also ensures that unit owners care what happens to the water that enters their home because they continue to receive a bill for what they use. Studies have shown that unit owners who pay for water tend to use 20 to 25 per cent less on a monthly basis because they receive a bill and are responsible for their water use.
Internet of Things (IOT) Water Metering Solutions
Clean Cut Energy’s exclusive Waterfactor submetering system is specifically designed to provide townhouse condominiums with cost-effective, hourly water meter readings for each unit through our customized web interface. With this system, we can alert owners about leaks and help them identify and solve issues before they turn into a big water bill. Our Waterfactor equipment is completely compatible with all existing city water metering equipment so your condominium can likely make the transition very easily. We are working to transition our current customers to this new platform, and we’re happy to help you find out if this an option for your condominium complex.
So if you get one of those letters in the mail, don’t panic. Give us a call at (226) 780-0284 or email Mike Kazmaier at email@example.com. We’ll help make this transition simple for your condominium and save you money in the process. We will also be attending this year’s Canadian Condominium Institute (CCI) 2018 Grand River Chapter Conference and Trade Show, May 4-5. Come visit us in Booth 4 and let us know how we can help.
Mike Kazmaier is a Professional Engineer and the Director of Operations of Clean Cut Energy, an engineering and submetering company located in Guelph, Ont. Clean Cut Energy designs, installs and manages submetering systems that reduce water and energy use for clients across Canada.
CCI-National Greetings to CCI-Grand River Chapter
CCI-Grand River Chapter Annual General Meeting - Fall 2017
Thirty-five years is a long time. I have not been around CCI that long, but I can only imagine that the founders of CCI would be very pleased to see how it has grown and thrived. It has been a challenge to grow a national organization that still recognizes the difference in legal and market landscapes throughout its regions, but the fact that we have done this and are continuing to grow is a testimony to those founders and their vision, all the hardworking and dedicated volunteers that followed throughout CCI’s history, and all of you who continue to work across this great country of ours to improve the lives of condominium owners. In many ways, CCI is like Canada, strong in its diversity and even stronger together.
This year has seen many great developments, including the creation of your new Grand River Chapter. With the creation of the Grand River Chapter, we are now 17 chapters-strong. I want to thank all the volunteers of the Grand River Chapter and the Golden Horseshoe Chapter that made this transition go smoothly. We have also seen some new great initiatives like the Great Canadian Condo Contest, and the expansion of the Condo Strength Program. There have also been challenges, such as the emergence of new organizations competing for our members’ attention.
We have also taken on the challenge of looking at how CCI will need to adapt in this changing world in order to grow and serve the Canadian condominium community in the next 35 years. Changing member demographics, the rise of mobile and short form media, the impact of free online content and social media competing for members’ attention are just some of the challenges facing traditional membership-oriented organizations like CCI. To that end, CCI has undertaken an examination of itself, how it delivers services, and how it funds itself. Working with the leadership of all chapters and committees, this process is well under way and I am confident that it will result in a re-invigorated and stronger CCI.
While looking into the future is necessary and very important, so is continuing to serve our members as we have done in the past. Your volunteers in the Grand River Chapter will no doubt have a busy year ahead, but we are confident of the success of the chapter due to the solid base upon which it is grounded. We wish you all the best in the coming year and are here at CCI National to offer whatever support you require.
When you reflect on the past year please recognize, as I do, the role of everyone that provides their time and energy in assisting your Chapter in its activities. Without volunteers, CCI would cease to function. Not only time and energy, but creative thinking and dedication are given by many. On behalf of all CCI, I would like to extend my sincere appreciation and thank all the volunteers that have made the world for condominiums, and CCI, better.
From all of us and National, thank you for your contributions, thank you for your time, thank you for your energy. I hope you have a great annual meeting and look forward to our continued mutual success in 2017-2018.
CCI National President
CAO Board of Directors appoints chair of the Condominium Authority Tribunal (CAO Press Release)
September 1, 2017 - The Condominium Authority of Ontario (CAO) will be designated as the condominium authority for purposes of the Condo Act and will become responsible for the administration of certain provisions of the Condo Act, including management and oversight of the tribunal. You can find more information on the CAO's website.
November 1, 2017 - Most Condo Act changes, including the new tribunal, and the licensing provisions of the CMSA will come into effect.
The Condominium Management Regulatory Authority of Ontario (CMRAO) will be designated as the administrative authority for purposes of the CMSA and will become responsible for administering the CMSA including licensing condo managers and providers. You can find more information on the CMRAO's website.
CCI Legislative Update - Dates Announced for New Condo Law Changes
Ontario is making progress on its commitment to increase consumer protection in condos and improve how condos are run. The ministry is excited to announce a number of new protections under the amended Condominium Act (Condo Act) and the Condominium Management Services Act (CMSA) that will be taking effect this fall and in early 2018.
New Condo Law Changes:
Condo Act – New changes to the general regulation under the Condo Act are now available on the e-laws website. These changes include increased protections for condo owners, including improvements to how condos in Ontario are governed and greater transparency and accountability of condo boards. (Please note that it may take several days before updates are added to Ontario Regulation 48/01).
Condo Authority Tribunal – A new regulation is also available on the e-laws website that supports the establishment of the Condominium Authority Tribunal. The tribunal will offer alternative dispute resolution services for certain types of disputes prescribed by this regulation.
Condo Manager Licensing - As a reminder, a new regulation regarding licensing of condo managers and management providers was previously released and is available on the e-laws website.
When Changes Take Effect:
On November 1, 2017 - Most Condo Act changes, including the new tribunal, and the licensing provisions of the CMSA will come into effect.
On February 1, 2018 – Remainder of the CMSA will come into effect.
Designation of Administrative Authorities:
On September 1, 2017 – The Condominium Authority of Ontario (CAO) will be designated as the condominium authority for purposes of the Condo Act and will become responsible for the administration of certain provisions of the Condo Act, including management and oversight of the tribunal. You can find more information on the CAO's website.
On November 1, 2017 – The Condominium Management Regulatory Authority of Ontario (CMRAO) will be designated as the administrative authority for purposes of the CMSA and will become responsible for administering the CMSA including licensing condo managers and providers. You can find more information on the CMRAO's website.
What’s Coming Next:
The ministry will be releasing in the near future:
- A series of new forms under the Condo Act to make it easier for condo corporations and owners to comply with the new requirements.
- A set of plain language guides and fact sheets to help Ontario’s condo community better understand the new condo law changes.
- The education and exam requirements for condo managers.
The ministry will also be seeking public input on future regulations, including:
- Public registry of condo corporations.
- Complaints procedures, code of ethics and insurance requirements for condo managers.
Stay tuned as we will be notifying you as soon as these become available!