A Unique Form of Ownership
Owning a condominium differs from owning a conventional home in several ways. Key differences include:
What do you Own?
When you purchase a condominium, you own a private dwelling called a “unit.”
Your unit is registered in your name.
You also share ownership of the common elements and assets of the building and community.
It’s important to be clear where your unit’s boundaries are located before you purchase.
You’ll want to know, for instance, whether you’ll be paying for window washing or repairs to your townhouse’s bricks or whether the condominium corporation will be responsible for this.
You can find information about your unit’s boundaries in your condominium’s governing documents.
Some condominium units (called freehold condominiums) include ownership of the land your home is on. If this is the case, your unit may be the entire house including the exterior walls, the roof, and the lawn.
You may want to carefully review the condominium corporation’s site plan, prepared by a professional surveyor, so you know exactly where your unit’s boundaries lie.
Common elements may include lobbies, hallways, elevators, recreational facilities, walkways, gardens, and other amenities. They may also include structural elements and mechanical and electrical services.
Some common elements may be outside the unit boundaries but are for the sole use of the owner of a particular unit. Balconies, parking spaces, storage lockers, driveways, and lawns are common examples.