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From the Summer 2020 Issue

A Brief History of the RCM Designation

The RCM Advantage

Feature || Ronald Outram

On Friday, March 30, 1984, eighteen practicing condominium property managers were presented with a certificate acknowledging they had achieved the requirements by the Association of Condominium Managers of Ontario. They had completed the education and practical experience required by the ACMO to be designated as a “Registered Condominium Manager,” and would now be able to use the RCM initials after their name.

It is hard to believe that this was 36 years ago. When asked to write something on how the RCM designation came about and how it was implemented, it started a lot of personal reminiscing.

In 1977, after several years of frustration, several of us in the industry, headed by Darwin Kealey, met with the Ontario Government. Many meetings later, we formed the Association of Condominium Managers of Ontario in 1977 and subsequently incorporated the association in 1981. The Incorporation Documents and By-laws provided for a designation to be a Registered Condominium Manager or “RCM.”

The years from 1977 to 1983 were spent concentrating on getting ACMO recognized with management companies, the Government, and professionals serving the industry. At the time, the Education Committee faced the dilemma of not having anyone who had achieved an RCM to qualify future RCMs. As such, after much deliberation on how best to establish a way to assess, evaluate, and grant a candidate the designation, the committee decided to approach Seneca College in early 1983.

Seneca College subsequently proposed a method of evaluating potential RCM candidates, which the committee accepted. Based on Seneca College’s recommendations, each committee member developed 25 questions and answers covering the areas of Legal, Insurance, Administration, Finance and Building Maintenance. The resulting list of 300 questions was provided to Seneca College, from which they prepared and adjudicated the RCM examination.

Eighteen seasoned and experienced managers arrived to write the first exam. I remember it well; all eighteen managers were so nervous and wondering, “What if I fail it?” From these humble beginnings came a world-class program that today accounts for more than 900 RCMs in the industry in Ontario.

With more than 40 years of experience, and being a member of a number of real estate associations, in my opinion, ACMO’s RCM is the only way to go for serious condominium managers who want to achieve a higher standard. 


Ronald Outram, Life RCM, is a founding member and was both a past president and board member of ACMO. He is now retired from Provincial Property
Management Limited, which he founded in 1972, and enjoys travelling with his wife.
provincialpropertymanagement.ca


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