Originally published in CondoLife Magazine, July-August 2017 issue.

 

When you buy a brand new condominium unit, emergencies are rare. The materials are new, the systems are new and the condominium project has been inspected at key stages during the construction process. Nevertheless, emergencies can and sometimes do happen. When they do, Tarion is here to help.

An emergency is a situation that occurs during the warranty period and involves a warranted defect that, if not attended to immediately, would cause substantial damage to your unit or the common elements or risk your health and safety. It may even cause one or more units in the condominium project to be uninhabitable.

In a condominium, it is your responsibility to manage the warranty process for your individual unit. For any shared components of the building, such as the hallways, elevators and parking garage, the warranty is the responsibility of the condominium board.

If there is an emergency situation that affects the common elements of your building, notify your condominium board immediately.

If the emergency situation is in your unit, contact the builder.  Your builder has up to 24 hours to resolve the emergency by making your unit safe and secure and preventing any further damage from occurring.  If your builder does not resolve the emergency, call Tarion.

If you cannot reach your builder or Tarion, you or your contractor may do the repair work necessary to correct the emergency only and then make a claim to be reimbursed for the repair costs. Keep records of the emergency situation and the repair work done, such as receipts and photographs taken before and after the repair.

Once the initial emergency is resolved, your builder has 30 days to complete a full repair of the defect that caused the emergency situation. If your builder does not do so, contact Tarion and we will work with you directly to resolve the matter.

There are some situations that fall outside of this warranty coverage. For example, if an emergency is caused by a failure of a municipal or utility service – a situation that is not within your builder's control – it is not a warranted defect and Tarion cannot resolve it.

Examples of an emergency in your new condominium:

  • Complete loss of heat between September 15 and May 15;

  • Gas leak;

  • Complete loss of electricity;

  • Complete loss of water;

  • Complete stoppage of sewage disposal;

  • Plumbing leak that requires the entire water supply to be shut off;

  • Major collapse of any part of the condominium's exterior or interior structure;

  • Major water penetration on the walls or ceilings;

  • A large pool of standing water that makes the condominium unsafe or uninhabitable.