Are there other types of Condominium Developments?

All condominiums that were created prior to May 5, 2001 and most new con­ dominiums are standard condominium corporations. The Condominium Act,1998, however, introduces additional types of condominium developments that differ from the standard condominium. The additional types of condominium developments are vacant land, leasehold, common elements and phased condo­ miniums.


Vacant Land - allows a developer to register parcels of land as condominium units without the need for buildings. The unit then consists of the land and whatever is built on it; the common elements will usually be the roads, sewers, water systems and recreational facilities, if any. The developer may set specifi­ cations for what can or cannot be built on the units so that there is uniformity in the homes that are constructed. Usually the developer will build the house and the transaction will close upon completion of the house. The unit owner is responsible for all costs relating to the unit including the complete repair and maintenance of the home. The condominium corporation can provide  services and carry out maintenance and repair to the unit and recover the cost against the unit.


Leasehold Condominium - is like a traditional condominium except that the condominium is on land which is leased by the developer as opposed to being owned by the developer. The purchaser of the condominium unit therefore buys an interest that is limited as to its duration. The Act states that this lease cannot be less than 40 years or more than 99 years, plus rights of renewal. At the end of the lease the condominium building reverts to the lessor. The common expenses include rent payable to the lessor.


Common Elements  Condominium  - is where only the jointly  owned property is part of the condominium. The individually owned parcels of land, which are tied to the condominium through  an ownership  interest in the condominium, are not part of the condominium corporation. They are called parcels of tied land and are commonly referred to as POTLs. This type of project allows prop­ erty owners to jointly share in the costs of the common property such as roads and recreational areas, with a mechanism for ensuring that contributions to pay for these facilities are made. This is a way of getting around the non­ enforceability issues of positive covenants. The surrounding properties, how­ ever, are not part of the condominium. Unpaid common expense contributions can be collected by way of a lien against the POTL. The condominium corpo­ ration can only provide services and carry out maintenance and repair  to the unit if there is a separate contract with the POTL owner. There is no lien mechanism for recovering these costs against the POTL.


Phased Condominium - is where the developer builds a condominium project, for example a group of townhouses or a high-rise building and intends to build more than one phase of the project. The condominium is registered and owner­ ship of the units is transferred to the individual purchasers. When the second phase of the project is built and registered, it is collapsed into the existing con­ dominium and the first condominium and the second phase become one condo­ minium corporation. Currently, multi-phased projects are registered as separate condominium corporations and they are bound by "reciprocal agreements" for the purpose of accessing, governing and paying for the shared facilities.


John Siarkas

John Siarkas

CENTURY 21 Heritage Group Ltd., Brokerage*
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