Specific Legal Issues
Common Elements VS. Exclusive-Use Common Elements
From the CCI Huronia Fall 2023 Condo Buzz Newsletter
Common elements in a condominium are the shared areas in the community that belong to all unit owners. These could include: lobbies, hallways, stairwells, garbage areas, community bike storage, visitors parking, and all exterior property grounds and gardens.
They also include any community amenities the complex has to offer. Such as, the party room, exercise facilities, pools, change rooms, hot tubs, tennis courts, video rooms, libraries, and billiard rooms.
A portion of the monthly maintenance fees paid to the Corporation is put aside for the continued upkeep of the common elements for all condominiums.
Condominiums also have exclusive-use common elements like; balconies, parking spaces, lockers, and the exterior of condo townhouses. These are not shared areas among unit owners, instead they are individual spaces that particular unit owners have exclusive rights to use. Depending on the rules and regulations of the complex will depend on how the occupant is allowed to use the different spaces. For instance, some condominiums do not allow people to smoke on or store certain items on the exclusive-use property and other complexes have rules that unit owners are required to maintain their exclusive-use property.
Every condominium complex operates differently. This is why it is important to review all condominium documentation prior to purchasing any condominium. That way you have a good understanding for the what the condo corporation pays for and maintains, what your rights are with regards to exclusive-use property and what is required of you as a unit owner to maintain.
Ashley Lamb Barrie
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