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Skyrocketing Insurance Rates and Higher Deductibles

Owners received an e-mail early in December 2019 which included the new LMS 1866 Insurance Policy and information about the rising costs of insuring The Electra and the significantly increased deductibles for water and sewage back-up damage.

This situation, while exacerbated in the case of the Electra because of the number and value of claims over the past three years, is not limited to our building.

The same factors are in play throughout Vancouver, across Canada, and beyond.

Many stories have been published and you can find them yourselves by web searching news items for: condo + insurance.

An example of the stories in the media can be found here: https://bc.ctvnews.ca/insurance-sticker-shock-for-condo-owners-1.4732916

As this affects the building
 Insurance for the Electra, which is valued at $100-million, has increased for the December 1, 2019 through November 30, 2020 period from $111,926 to $351,000, a 313% increase.
 These costs were not foreseen in our previous budget (presented at the May 2019 AGM).
 The additional expense will have some impact on our current budget, for the fiscal year which ends March 31, and a more significant impact on our upcoming budget (the fiscal year beginning April 1 and ending March 31, 2021).
 The Insurance Policy is a Strata Joint expense, so the Strata will have to find a way to offset the expected deficit in its budget for the current fiscal year due to the increase in Insurance fees.
 Although insurance costs have increased three times, our deductibles for water and sewage back-up damage were increased to $500,000 — which means that damage from water or sewage back-up to common property in the Electra must now be borne by Electra owners for the first $500,000.

As this affects you
 You are responsible for water or sewage back-up damage that originates from within your suite for all costs up to the first $500,000.
 It is highly unlikely that your current insurance policy covers such a significant deductible.

What you should do
 Contact your insurance agency to discuss your options.
 A summary of building coverages is attached to help inform your discussion.
 Some owners have advised they have been successful increasing their coverage with their existing insurers, such as Wawanesa and Travellers, as well as an online insurer Sonnet [https://www.sonnet.ca].
 Any plumbing work in your unit should be done only by a qualified contractor who carries adequate insurance.

What the Strata Council will do
 The Strata is reviewing procedures to address proactively water safety issues and will inform owners as progress is made.
 The Strata is reviewing bylaws to ensure best practice with regard to chargebacks and liability.
 You will be notified of an SGM to be held towards the end of January 2020. Further insurance information will be provided and new Bylaws will be put forward for a vote.

Moving forward
 If you have a question regarding insurance, you are advised to call the Strata Manager (Ingrid Kurilova, Urban Properties, 604.681.4177 Ext.206, email ingrid@urbanproperties.ca).
 Also the Residential Section has created an email insurance989res@gmail.com to facilitate information sharing. We ask that you email us with helpful information from your experiences with insurance agencies. As trends develop we will share them with all owners. We also invite your questions and suggestions.

The Residential Section Executive


Capri Loss Prevention Brochure – November 2019

Posted November 7, 2019 at: 2:49 pm

CapriCMW Loss Prevention Brochure


Noise Etiquette & Holiday Reminders

Posted November 23, 2012 at: 9:55 am

The Residential Section Executive Council would like to remind all owners and residents to always be mindful of others in the building by keeping noise to a minimum. Some feel that downtown living means having to deal with excess noise. However, Bylaws 1 (g) are very clear regarding noise within the building:

i) No noise shall be made at any time, which in the opinion of Management is a nuisance or unreasonably interferes with the use and enjoyment of any other Strata Lot.

ii) No stereo, radio, television or other sound reproducing equipment shall be used at a volume, which, in the opinion of Management, causes a disturbance or unreasonably interferes with the use and enjoyment of any other Strata Lot.

iii) No musical instrument, tool or other device shall be used which in the opinion of Management, causes a disturbance or interferes with the use and enjoyment of any other Strata Lot.

iv) Municipal bylaws covering noise, disturbances, and public nuisance shall apply to all Owners.

The Executive Council has a duty to ensure that residents adhere to the bylaws at all times. We take noise complaints very seriously and will not hesitate to levy fines against strata lots, if necessary.

Please respect your neighbours and the bylaws at all times during the day and night, and follow these tips:

  • Use the lobby for cell phone conversations, and greeting or saying goodbye to your guests. DO NOT use the hallways or elevator landings.
  • Lower the volume of your music & TV, especially if it can be heard in the hallway when your suite door is closed.
  • If you use a subwoofer, please elevate it off of the floor. Bass vibrations are carried easily between the walls and floors – especially in units with hard surface flooring.
  • If your unit has hard surface flooring, please use area rugs. If you don’t have area rugs, please wear soft-soled shoes or remove your footwear when inside your unit.
  • Do not allow your suite door to slam shut at any time.
  • Do not leave your suite door open to the hallway at any time.

Holiday gatherings, food smells & Christmas tree bylaw:

  • Please advise your neighbours of the date and approximate end time in advance of any parties. It is also a good idea to provide your contact information so that they can address any questions or concerns directly.
  • If your holiday cooking sets off the smoke detector, do not open the door to your suite door to vent the smoke to the hallway. That will set the building fire alarm off. The right things to do are turn off the stove, turn on a fan and open your windows.
  • Live and freshly cut Christmas trees are not permitted in the building or on any common property.

Please direct any questions or complaints to the Executive Council, via our property manager Ken Bro (kbro@colyvanpacific.com) or to the on-duty security desk (evenings & weekends).

Thank you and happy holidays!


Vancouver: Then (1957) & Now (2010)

Posted February 21, 2012 at: 4:34 pm

My, how Vancouver has grown over the years. It was a sunny day in 1957 when former Miss Vancouver and BC Electric/BC Hydro employee Carole Goldney bravely stood atop the Electra Building for an iconic photo. In the distance, we can see the edge of Stanley Park. Farther away are the North Shore mountains, hazily obscured. From the patches of snow, it appears to be a beautiful autumn day.

Carole, smiling with ease, reaches out slightly, as if she’s about to pluck a ship out of Coal Harbour. Earlier that year, the 19-year-old was crowned Miss Vancouver at the PNE.

In 2010, at the age of 77, Carole returned to The Electra to recreate the photo. On a slightly clearer day you can still see the mountains in the distance, but Stanley Park and Coal Harbour are masked by downtown buildings.

Click here to view the picture and read the full story, which includes a little more history about our iconic building.

Many thanks to residential owner Marlene Sikorra for sending the photo along to the Residential Section Executive Council.


New residential website now live!

Posted November 11, 2011 at: 11:10 pm

The Residential Section Executive Council is pleased to launch the newly redesigned website. Our goal was to create a site that better meets the needs of both owners and residents.

Stay tuned for more information via mail!