Owners have the right to take part in the shared governance of their condo community and can exercise this right by voting on important issues at owners’ meetings. They do this primarily by voting for board directors who represent their interests. Owners can’t vote if they are behind on paying their condo fees by 30 days or more, but can vote as soon as they catch up on payments. They may appoint a proxy to vote on their behalf.
A vote can be a contentious moment in a meeting and corporations need to prepare appropriately by communicating voting information to owners ahead of time.
Votes at AGMs and other owners’ meetings can be cast personally or by proxy by:
- A show of hands
- Marking a ballot
- By phone or virtually
- Marked on an form appointing a proxy
Vote by proxy
Owners can let someone else vote for them if they can’t attend at meeting. This individual is called a proxy and they are appointed by the owner completing and signing a proxy form. The owner’s signature on the proxy form must match the name on the corporation’s record of owners. The proxy represents one vote for all owners of a unit.
Voting at virtual meetings
Virtual solutions vary and each condo corporation should consider their unique needs. Some corporations may find that using a videoconferencing tool’s built-in features may suffice. Others may require using specialized third-party software. In either situation the voting process has to be fair, accountable, secure and allow for confidentiality. Corporations should collect feedback from owners and use it to address any challenges.