What is condominium ownership?

June 28, 2019

Condominium ownership is a different type of property ownership than owning a house. There are many similarities, but there are some important distinctions that home buyers should be aware of as they do their research.

One of the differences is that a condo corporation takes care of the premises for the homeowner. Whether it’s a high-rise, or a housing complex, a condo corporation is generally responsible for the upkeep of the area. Whether that means maintaining the facilities of a building or taking care of a park within a housing community, certain responsibilities don’t rest on the homeowner.

In return for taking care of the premises, homeowners are required to pay a fee, known as a maintenance fee, to cover the costs of the upkeep. There are also shared spaces, known as common elements, that maintenance fees also cover, such as repairs or upgrades to elevators for example.

There are different factors that go into the final calculation for the maintenance fee. It’s a good idea to have a look at the condo corporation’s status certificate and declaration to understand how these fees affect your bottom line and your monthly payments going forward.

For people who purchase a condo as a new home, they may not understand what a status certificate is, and what information it holds. As outlined on the s website, a status certificate holds key pieces of information on the financial status of a condominium.

In order to obtain and review a status certificate carefully, it’s best advised to consult with a real estate lawyer familiar with condominium transactions. He or she will be able to answer your questions about fees, payments and can assist you with identifying what you want to know in order to make an informed decision about your purchase.