Man standing in his kitchen cutting vegetables

More and more Ontarians are choosing to live in condominiums. Empty-nesters, young singles, couples and even families enjoy the freedom from routine maintenance such as lawn care or snow shoveling.

Condo life also includes sharing common areas with other residents and following by-laws and rules that are set by the condo corporation. It's important to understand how a condominium corporation is established and operates, so you know what to expect from condominium living.

Condominium types

When you are looking for a condominium, you may find different options on the market. It’s best to familiarize yourself with the types of condos available in Ontario.

Owner rights and responsibilities

Owning a condominium is different from owning a house because you are part of the larger condominium community.  You have rights and responsibilities for your unit as well as for common areas, such as the parking garage, hallways, and recreation centre. 

Buying, renting or selling

In many ways, buying a condominium unit is like buying a house. But it does differ in several key ways. For instance, with your condominium unit, you also buy a share of the property's "common elements".

Condominium management

Managing a condominium corporation is like managing a business. Corporations must follow laws, keep records, resolve conflicts, maintain the property and follow a budget. 

Common expenses fee

As a condo owner, you pay a monthly common expenses fee, which allows the condominium to manage and maintain parts of the property that you share with other residents. Examples may include a parking garage, landscaped grounds, recreation centre and elevators.

Governance

Owners elect a board of directors to oversee the business affairs of the condominium corporation. As an owner, you are a member of the condominium corporation. 

By-laws, rules and policies

Living in a condominium may not be the best fit for everyone. If you are considering condo living, take the time to understand the rules and regulations that impact living in a condominium.

Meetings and voting

A condominium is run by a corporation that holds several types of meetings. As part of this corporation, condo owners are entitled to attend most of these meetings.