The Condominium Act, 1998, sets out how condominium corporations are created, owned and governed, and protects the rights of every condominium owner in Ontario. Additionally, every owner is required to comply with the condominium corporation’s governing documents, which include the declaration, by-laws and rules. It is in the owner’s best interests to familiarize themselves with these documents since they are in place to protect the condominium community.
A condominium owner owns their individual unit and collectively shares in the ownership and expenses of the common elements. Some of those common elements – lobbies, parking garages, elevators – are typically used by all owners. Other common elements, such as the balcony, are typically intended for use by the individual owner only. Every condominium corporation will uniquely determine its common elements and every owner should check their condominium’s declaration to make sure they understand what is a common element in their building.
When you join a condominium community, you are entrusted with certain rights and obligations. Every condominium owner, for example, can seek election to the condominium board and can vote at owners’ meetings.
At the same time, each owner is required to pay for their share of the common expenses. Owners generally have to maintain their own unit, including repairing after normal wear and tear. For a better understanding of an owner’s rights and obligations, please review the Buyer’s Guide by the Condominium Authority of Ontario.
A condominium’s board of directors is elected by the owners and is responsible for managing the affairs of the condominium corporation. The condominium’s board of directors is responsible for overseeing all significant decisions related to the condominium. Owners can expect every director of the corporation to exercise their powers and duties honestly and in good faith and to exercise the care, diligence and skill that a reasonably prudent person would exercise in similar circumstances.