In this article, it’s my aim to clearly lay out what is, and is not part of the communal ownership, and where to find the references in the regulations to confirm this or present it to the unit owners.
What is Communal Property?
So, what is Communal Property? While you may think this is an obvious question to answer, it is surprisingly common to find people and committees who are not fully aware of what is and is not the responsibility of the committee to repair, maintain etc.
The Definition of Communal Property (AKA Jointly Owned Property).
Communal Property is also known as ‘jointly owned property’ or the ‘common areas’.
When you purchase an apartment in a building there will be areas of the building that are shared by every individual apartment owner.
The building roof, foundations, main walls (which support the jointly owned property), lifts, corridors, and any space intended to serve all or some the owners (such as gardens, pools, carparks etc) are also considered communal.
Under the law in Cyprus, this portion of the building is not just shared by these individual owners, they are physically owned by the individual owners.
How is your ownership share of the communal property calculated?
The share of the communal property you own is based on your property value (not property size which is a common misunderstanding). So, if your property value is twice your neighbours you own twice as much of that elevator, pool etc.
Further details, this is shown on 38I, 38T (III) & Table A of The Regulations.
It is no different for Villas on developments with shared facilities such as private roads, sewerage treatment, street lighting etc. If these form part of the property and are shared by multiple owners it is considered communal property.
Who is responsible for the maintenance of the communal property?
The maintenance, repair and insurance of this communal / shared property is the responsibility of the apartment buildings individual owners.
The thing that confuses the situation for many is that the amount each owner is responsible to pay is based on the m2 size of their property 38I, 38T (III) & Table B, not the ownership share Table A.
The distinction between ownership, voting rights and % of expenses set out in the regulation is important to understand as this can cause a number of serious problems if a mistake is made and someone was to challenge the legality of the committee, and AGM or use it as part of a defence for non-payment of communal fees.
The Cyprus Communal Guide
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