The Toronto Star recently reported about an unhappy condo resident who had four bicycles stolen from both the outdoor and the underground bike racks provided on the condominium property. The resident was lamenting the fact that the condo rules prohibited her from bringing her bicycle into her unit, while pets were allowed in the units.
Many condominiums have rules that prohibit bikes from being transported in the elevators or wheeled in the corridors and lobby areas of the building in order to prevent damage to the common elements and to avoid overcrowding and inconvenience to others traveling in the elevators. In addition, many condo rules also prohibit the storage of bicycles (and other items) on the balconies of units. All owners, tenants and other residents are bound by the rules.
Condominium owners have the right to requisition a meeting at any time for the purpose of amending or repealing a rule. As set out in section 46 of the Condominium Act, 1998, a requisition for a meeting of owners can be made by those owners who own at least 15% of the units and who are entitled to vote. The requisition must be signed by those requisitioning the meeting and must state the nature of the business to be presented at the meeting. Upon receiving the requisition, the board is required to hold a meeting of owners within 35 days unless the requisitionists consent to allow the matter to be added to the agenda of the next annual meeting.
Although tenants are bound by the rules, tenants do not have any standing to cause the condominium rules to be amended and the condominium manager is not at liberty to change or disregard the rules.
In this case, if the resident is an owner she can try to get enough signatures to requisition a meeting to amend the rules to allow bikes to be brought into the unit. However, in large buildings, and in particular, in those buildings with a high percentage of rented units, it may be difficult for an owner to obtain the required number of signatures from like-minded owners.