March 22, 2010
For many of us, the idea of a fire destroying our homes is an abstract concept that’s somewhat difficult to imagine. But a fire in Calgary at the condo the Canvas at Millrise left 200 of its residents painfully aware of how it feels. And although they have insurance, many are saying that simply won’t be enough. Do they have to continue paying condo fees? What about their mortgage? Property taxes?
The purchasers bought the units when prices were extraordinarily high in Calgary. One resident claims that his most recent market value assessment was $70 000 lower than when he purchased. So if he wants a payout instead of waiting for a new unit to be rebuilt, does he receive the price he paid or the fair market value? I’ll bet I can guess which one…
In addition, one former resident said that her insurance only pays out $800 per month for one year. If the condo takes two years to rebuild, that will only work out to $400 per month. And, anyway, what can you rent for $800?
On the bright side the developer still owns 40 units in a building on the property. Potentially, the displaced homeowners could be transferred to these units.
But then again, that’s 40 units…which would still leave many people displaced. Let’s hope they’re at LEAST not expected to pay condo fees…I mean, c’mon. The former residents are being reasonable. One resident said:
“I understand it’s going to take time to sort it out, but I would like to know what’s going to happen and when it’s going to happen.” Calgary Herald
The insurance company, condo board and the property manager are meeting today to discuss a plan of action. The fire department is also expected to release the cause of the blaze today.