Horizontal Property Act - Part 3

Published on 23/07/2011 in Your Spanish Home

Click here for part 1 in the series of these articles.

Click here for part 2 in the series of these articles.

Part 3:
The most important obligations of the owner are, inter alia, the following ones: 

  • To respect the general installations of the Community and other communal elements, both of individual and of general use, included or not in his apartment, making an adequate use of them and trying to avoid by all means to make any kind of damages on them.
  • To keep his apartment in a good state of conservation, so that it won´t damage the community or other owners, compensating for the damages arised from his negligence or the negligence of those people who are under his risponsability.
  • To allow in his own apartment all the repairs which are needed  for the servicing of the building and allow the essentials (access, lights, waters) which are indispensable for the creation of shared services of public interest  (i.e. lifts, reception, guards, etc.) holding all the rights to be compensated by the Community for the damages caused. 
  • To allow the entrante of workmen into his apartment or premise for repairs, as stated in the previous point.
  • To contribute, according to his  share, to the general expenses for the adequate maintenance of the building, its services, charges and responsabilities.
  • It is very important to comment that the purchaser of a flat is responsable, and that the purchased house is the guarantee, of the payment of all the fees owed to the Community for maintenance of shared services during the purchase year  and the year before.

    When signing the deeds, the seller must be updated with the Community payments and it needs to be formally expressed (the balance with the Community of owners)
    To do so, the seller will ask the Secretary of the Community of owners to verify the state of his debts. This certification is obligatory for the signing of the deeds, without that document, the deed can not be executed (unless the buyer expressly releases the seller from that obligation)
  • To contribuye, according to the share, for the rising of the reserve fund which is obligatory in the Community of Owners in order to FACE conservation and reparation works.
  • The reserve fund must have at least the 5% of the last ordinary budget of the community.
  • The community can hire an insurnce on the reserve funds in order to cover posible damages or to contract the general maintenance of the building and its general installations.
  • To act with due diligence when using the building and when relating to the rest of the owners, being responsible before them of every infrinngement and damage.
  • To comunícate to the secretary of the Community, the  mail address in Spain for notifications regarding the Community. 
  • If there is no notice of this mail address, it will be legally enough just the notification made to the apartment or premise and handed to whoever is using it at that moment.

    If an attempt is made in order to notify the owner about anything regarding the community and it become imposible to make it in the above refered place, this notification will be considered as fully and legally made by the posting of the commnication in the bulletin board of the Community or at any visible place of Community use, formally expressing the date and reasons why this way of notification is used, signed by the Secretary and with the approval of the president.
    Notification made this way produces same effects as the notice made in person.
  • Every change of ownership title over the house/premise needs to be communicated to  the secretary of the Community, by any mean which gives evidence of the receiving. Therefore if you don´t comunicate the sale of your property to the Secretary or you don´t do it in a clear way, you will keep being liable of the debts of the Community arised after the sale.(even though you can always claim the buyer back of the amount that was paid by you). 

Written by: Maria de Castro

About the author:

Maria de Castro is a Spanish Lawyer and the Director of the Law Firm www.costaluzlawyers.es.

Costa Luz Lawyers are contract and consumer real estate law specialists covering all parts of Spain. You can contact Maria at mldecastro@costaluzlawyers.es

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