Tenant activity consists of activities carried out by the community of tenants. Every tenant committee reflects the personalities of its members and its activity will be shaped by what the tenants wish and choose to organise, within the possibilities offered by the property and allowances. The purpose of tenant activity is to support the sense of community amongst the tenants. If you are interested in or have questions about tenant activities at your property, such as upcoming events and club room reservations, please contact your building’s own tenant committee. In the case of general matters to do with tenant activity you can contact Hoas Tenant Activity at asukastoiminta(at)hoas.fi.
Tenant activity is based on the Act on Joint Management of Rental Buildings
The members of the tenant committee are elected at the annual tenant meeting. Hoas sends invites to the meeting. Tenant meetings are held in the beginning of the year and the members of the committee serve until the next election meeting. In case the tenant committee cannot be formed the meeting can be organized again at a later date. You are welcome to join tenant activity at any time!
Sending invites to the tenant meeting
The maintenance company delivers the invitations to all apartments and offices and posts it on the property notice boards. The invitation will also be sent to the tenants by email a few days before the meeting. Often the tenant meeting will be led by a representative of Hoas, but it can also be held by the members of the previous tenant committee.
Joining the tenant committee
Tenant committee members must be of legal adult age and have a valid tenancy agreement for the Hoas property where they want to join the committee. Only one person per apartment can join the committee. Several people from the same apartment can naturally join in on the activities, but only one can be an official member and as such, have a vote in tenant committee meetings. Tenants with a fixed-term tenancy agreement can also join a tenant committee. If you wish to join the tenant committee but are not able to attend the tenant meeting, you can authorize a legal adult to represent you in the meeting. A person attending with a power of attorney cannot vote. Only an attending tenant can vote in the meeting.
Organisation of the tenant committee
At the tenant meeting, the tenant committee members will be elected and the new tenant committee members will take on roles according to their interests and abilities. The tenant committee should have at least a chairperson who acts as the elected official between the tenants and Hoas. In addition to this, the committee will usually have a secretary who takes care of summoning meetings, taking minutes and typing them afterwards. The treasurer takes care of the tenant committee’s funds and bookkeeping, ensuring that the tenant committee uses the funds as required (25% for recreation, 25% for purchases, 50% for purchases/recreation as agreed in the tenant committee meeting) and does not exceed the annual budget. Additionally, the members of the tenant committee may take on other roles as necessary, for example act as delegates in charge of communication, keys, the club room or the gym. Often one person may have several roles, especially if there are only a couple of members in the tenant committee.
What if the tenant committee cannot be formed?
If there are not enough tenants interested in tenant activities living in the property (at least two tenants over 18 from different apartments), the tenant committee cannot be formed. A tenant can ask for a possibility to sign up as a contact person. The purpose of the contact person is to increase awareness of tenant activity in order to form a tenant committee later. The contact person can lend temporarily keys of the common areas to the tenants. They must inform Hoas Tenant Activity their contact information which can be forwarded to the tenants asking about the common areas. The contact person can also give out their contact information on other platforms (i.e. building’s own Facebook group). If you are interested in being a contact person, contact Hoas Tenant Activity and check if this could be a possibility.
Tenant committee meetings
The tenant committee’s official decisions are always made at the tenant committee meeting. The tenant committee meets as agreed on by the members during its term – however, some meetings must take place in order for the tenant committee to continue existing and for the committee to be allowed to receive allowances from Hoas.
Notifying other tenants about the tenant committee meeting
Tenants must be notified of any tenant committee meetings at least four days prior to the meeting on the property notice board and for example in the relevant Facebook group or the property website. The invitation should list the topics that will be discussed at the meeting.
A quorate meeting
There must be at least half of the tenant committee members present in the meeting for it to be quorum and to be able to make decisions. For example, if the tenant committee has six members, the committee will be able to make valid decisions if at least three members are present at the meeting. At least two members must always be present.
Progression of the meeting
Minutes are taken during the meeting. The minutes must include a list of participants and all decisions made. There must also be signatures of the secretary and the chairperson of the meeting. Especially purchasing decisions and their budgets must be clearly entered into the minutes, so that Hoas staff can later find the tenant committee decision on a purchase when the committee’s expense claim form is reviewed. The minutes must be sent to Hoas as soon as possible after the meeting either via mail or as an email attachment. The purpose of the meeting is to discuss matters that are important to all tenants, plan joint activities and purchases and also support the sense of community.
Decisions are generally reached through discussion at the tenant committee meeting. If a unanimous decision cannot be reached, the matter will be decided by vote instead. The vote can be either open or closed. If the votes are equal, the chairperson’s vote will decide. The tenant committee meetings are open to all tenants and everyone can join in the discussion with their own ideas. However, when it comes to making decisions, only the official tenant committee members have a vote. New official members cannot be added to the tenant committee at the tenant committee meeting. Unofficial members are welcome to join in!
Attending with authorisation
If a tenant committee member cannot attend a tenant committee meeting, they can authorise a representative to attend in their place. In such cases, the member must write an authorisation letter stating the personal details of the representative and the authoriser (full name, complete personal identity code), the address of the authoriser, the scope of authorisation, the validity period of the authorisation, the date, the place and the authoriser’s signature. The authorisation will be provided to Hoas as an attachment to the minutes.
Sending the minutes to Hoas and archiving the copies
In addition to sending the signed minutes to Hoas Tenant Activity by email or mail after the tenant committee meeting, the committee should also archive them for the committee’s own use. The minutes can be stored for example in a folder at the club room, where they can also be browsed by other tenants in the property. This is another way to make tenant activities more familiar and transparent to all tenants.