I am Dianne Bond. I am trying my best to change what I can, accept what I can't, and understand the difference - before strata stress becomes fatal.
I have worked as a newspaper carrier since 2013 when I could no longer function efficiently and effectively enough in my former career as a paralegal, and I find a noticeable difference between law and its practice in a strata. It's upsetting, to me, at least.
This is our home - it was new and beautiful when we bought it
It is no longer new, but unit 409 is still beautiful to us
The original peace, enjoyment, privacy, and pride of practical design, high-quality low-maintenance building materials and landscaping, legitimate voting, understandable minutes, and respect for law and equity was important to the value and enjoyment of our home.
With our common property being worth more than twice as much as the buildings, one of the most valuable assets was the original landscape architecture; which was similar in quality to what was seen in the Street of Dreams promotions highlighting some of the most luxurious and opulent homes in Metro Vancouver
It was like living in a park that filtered the sunlight with beautiful greenery. This is how it looked from Unit 409.
We were surrounded by natural beauty
clean air, peace, and quiet
of approximately 300 trees
cared, shared, and valued for years
because in 1985 municipalities received power to deal with geotechnical concerns, giving notice respecting stability of land, warning of danger and safeguards required, including trees, which issuing the building permit was contingent on, and it would cost millions to replace them now (at an estimated $15,000 for each mature tree; not more than half a million for just one)
The roots of hundreds of trees and thousands of bushes planted by the developers provided geotechnical stability to a steep sensitive slope with a history of land slip so that value and enjoyment would be preserved
but they were lower than average after a few rogues made significant changes to the use and appearance of common property, leaving it looking like a war zone for years, stigmatizing the reputation of the complex
destroyed the trees - and what had been park like was replaced with
invasion of privacy
added noise, dirt, and heat
sights so horrific that a stockade fence had to be built to hide the embarrassment from passing traffic
Worse, as the roots of the trees decomposed
all over the complex
contrary to the best interests of the strata corporation
We were happy in 1988
We are not happy now - after decades of crazy-making violations of the law.and shockingly costly waste and loss
Al Macleod, a rogue realtor disciplined by the BC Real Estate Council for misconduct, moved here in 2003 and immediately began to take over, By 2017, he was gone, but the strata corporation, and Unit 409 in particular, may never recover from the devastating costs from the years that he acted in conflict and violation of the law so continually that it seemed to become normalized. He was instrumental in destruction of Sunridge Estates on such a mass scale that it reminded me of what Dr. Joseph Mengele said, "The more we do to you, the less you seem to think we are doing it..."
Mr. MacLeod wanted to sell extra decking and panoramic views. Since 2003 hundreds of sound, mature trees, thousands of bushes, and countless ground-cover plants that stabilized the slope were pre-emptively destroyed in violation of statutes, bylaws, restrictive covenants, special levies, and property rights in a relentless campaign for the exclusive benefit of some at the expense of others.Nobody profited more than Mr. Macleod, and nobody lost more than I did.
Mr. Macleod acted without votes, but he did not act alone. He was joined or supported by other power hungry newcomers who directly or indirectly destroyed landscaping and trees that the original owners paid for
They also destroyed top-quality low-maintenance patios
building extra decks for their exclusive use contrary to the law and the best interests of the strata corporation
Trees were "topped" (killed) by cutting them in half, destructive pests were employed, and roots that needed to be kept covered and cool were stripped of surrounding plants and protective soil and left exposed to the killing heat of the sun. When trees that escaped the axe were dead or dying they were removed and replacement trees were not planted despite continual requests. Likewise, the surplus special levy funds were not reimbursed to those who paid them, despite continual requests.
Worse, she made purposeful misrepresentations, which were repeated endlessly, disparaged my reputation and kept me in the dark, effectively depriving me of access to material strata records and statutory legal protections. For years she ignored my requests that she correct her erroneous advice, then hen she relied on a limitation date to argue against taking responsibility, just like council does to argue against completing strata insured repairs for water damage.
Rather than a fiduciary duty that requires more care, not less, Adrienne Murray pleaded that she has no duty to avoid causing harm to owners who pay her through their strata fees to provide sound legal advice that can be relied on as being accurate. Further to that, she admitted that her reputation or standing before the bar is at risk but she still failed to correct her error, apologize, or compensate for the resultant damage.
This was just the beginning of the ensuing damage and loss.
As the roots of the destroyed trees decomposed over the next few years issues suddenly developed that included soil erosion, sinking buildings, cracking pavement, breaking underground pipes and a costly loss of security all over the complex. Losses in the millions left the strata corporation destabilized and so impoverished that the work of a professional landscape architect and the standards of building construction that were so shockingly destroyed have yet to be reinstated, even a dozen years later.
The ever increasing havoc wrecked for so long, by so few, is beyond belief
Few owners dare face such severely punitive retaliation for resistance
Valuable trees that were specifically saved during the building envelope project were flagrantly destroyed in retaliation against me, with one of the responsible parties emailing me a message blatantly claiming to have the right to act against others.
Our happy home became the home from hell, and I became increasingly sick from the stress.
Peace, honour, and stability were replaced with costly extra decking, sometimes in inappropriate locations in terms of privacy, curb appeal, and property values.
508 on the north side, with years of rudeness (from strata councillor Sherrill Berg)
408 across from us on the south side (for strata councillor Marnie Hennan)
518 topped it off with a 4-way... balcony, deck, patio, and view - for former strata president and realtor Al MacLeod
Councillor Sherrill Berg in Unit 508 persistently erects unsightly tarps on the common property without caring about the effect on others and calls remedial proposals "outrageous"
Members of the strata management team who persistently misrepresent facts and law or refuse to answer questions honestly should be prepared to take lie detector tests. The polygraph starts at about $500 plus tax.
CAVEAT EMPTOR ... let the buyer beware
At Sunridge Estates it is not "what you see is what you get"
and it is not law and order - it is the exact opposite.
Members of the strata management team are taking common property for their own exclusive use, without permission, without paying user fees, advertising for sale recreational sundecks that belong to others and spending other people's money for their own unjust enrichment. This unscrupulous group of rogues is collaborating in an unholy power alliance based on fraudulent misrepresentations that disparage complainants and mislead purchasers, officers of the court, police, and others.
All this corrupt governance, injustice, and continual violation of the Strata Property Act makes me so sick that I can no longer function efficiently and effectively.
It is devastating beyond belief.
It deprives us of trees... money... security...
landscaping and gardening
Profit from abuse of power at the expense of others
is a sickening industry - that is growing and becoming increasingly normalized.
- denied my legal right to access strata records and the strata's obligation to provide them
- failed to meet statutory obligations to insure against and repair water damage
- misrepresented facts and law - flagrantly, blatantly, deliberately, and persistently
- fraudulently purported that extra decking is limited common property - when it is not
- falsely accused me of trespassing - undermining my credibility with a disparaging police record
- induced the RCMP to trample on my constitutional rights - bullying me out of engaging in a sit down demonstration against oppression and fraudulent misrepresentations, and
- disabled me with decades of prolonged stress and continual abuse - ruthlessly - without regret.
Legitimate concerns about misconduct and significant unfairness are met with ruthless oppression, stunning RCMP attacks, and nefarious accusations of harassment and malice by lawyers hired by members of the strata council to thwart my rights, ignore the law, misrepresent facts, provoke litigation, and threaten me with crushing costs.
All 68 units are naturally bright - UNIT 409 is the only unit spoiled by construction defects, water damage, building settlement, loss of patio space, and decades of unique oppression contrary to the Act. We want equal rights and protection. We want our home to to function as it was intended.
We loved being surrounded by beautiful trees... So did lots of foster cats
Over the years we kept adding more mirrors
to our living room, dining room, and hall
to reflect our magical park-like surroundings, full of beautiful trees
that filled my heart with joy and our home with beauty.
Trees and landscaping that sheltered us from heat, noise, dirt, and exposure
were wrongly destroyed without a vote
and pain and suffering for us
We hung architectural glass to block out the offensive invasion through our windows
and restore some privacy and enjoyment
costing us thousands of dollars in expense
and subjecting us to bizarre threats of bogus fines.
Strata governance at Sunridge Estates is so bizarre and perverse that it's crazy making and beyond belief. After investing over 25 years in our home it is all we can do to try to live our lives and stay in touch with reality.
After decades of unfair treatment and ever-increasing loss we still love our home and do not want to move. Our home is uniquely suited to our needs. We want to enjoy it again.
- built in 2 phases in 1987 and 1990
- rainscreened by Morrison Hershfield Engineering and Heatherbrae Construction with Substantial Completion October 11th, 2005
- overhangs added to the sloped roofs of garages
- further architectural upgrades include redesigned balconies and railings
- building envelope of fire-retardant Hardi-board siding with front cladding of vinyl and cultured stone
- 10-year warranty good until October 2015
- convenient floor plans with ample closets and storage
- mainfloor laundry and bedrooms with walk-in master closets and 3 or 4 piece ensuites
- angled windows to the south - spread the sunlight inside
- private double garages for every unit - most with driveways
- some units have been recently remodelled - creating a variety of interior design - including new appliances, plumbing, lighting, blinds, and floor coverings
Every unit has a Fireplace - Wood or Gas
After special levies of nearly 6 million dollars attributable to building envelope repairs completed in October 2005, strata council minutes of February 9, 2009, state on page 8 under Miscellaneous that:
"In 2006 - Linquist appraisal company following a thorough review of the rehabilitation done to this complex identified the effective age of the buildings at 7 years."The October/November 2008 issue of West Coast Homes & Design magazine advertised a new townhouse development boasting of features that professional realtors understand the value of:
".. a prestigious homebuying opportunity
... unequalled in the Tri-Cities area
... situated in a peaceful setting with mature trees
... elegant streetscapes, lush interior gardens ..."
Words which could have described Sunridge Estates ... it was such a delightful place to live
... until a few irresponsible people wrecked havoc and created a shocking path of destruction that left the common property in a dilapidated shambles from approximately 2004 to 2010, with such costly and perpetual expense that I see little chance of reinstatement - at least not in my lifetime. To me, it's a tragedy - and a crime - no less than vandalism.
We miss the beautiful trees and landscaping we had until 2004
- an urban forest on a steep 5.5 acre slope
- over 280 birch and pine trees kept homes clean, quiet, and cool
- planted pursuant to restrictive covenants that run with the land
- providing erosion control and geotechnical security
- peaceful elegant streetscapes and enhanced property values
- natural privacy and park-like views created by a professional landscape architect
- low-maintenance evergreen ground cover
- thousands of slope protection bushes
- expensive investments in valuable common assets
- important for a sensitive slope with a history of slipping
- paid for and beautifully matured
- catastrophically destroyed
- without approval of the owners
Beautiful displays can be remembered in pictures - and some spots still exist ...
Click here to take survey
FLOOR PLANS, LANDSCAPING, DECKS
and all the rest of the posts in this blog
until the last post called Q&A: What People Ask Me.
My other blogs are all supplementary to this one: Sunridge Estates on Lansdowne Drive.