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Questions and Answers
Clarify all your condominium management questions and concerns.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the tasks of the administrator?
The functions of the administrator, as well as others assigned to him by the meeting:
- Convene the assembly of joint owners;
- Prepare the budget for revenue and expenditure for each year;
- Verify the existence of fire risk insurance, proposing to the assembly the amount of the insured capital;
- Collect revenue and make common expenses;
- Require the owners to share in approved expenditure;
- Perform conservative acts of rights relating to the commons;
- Regulate the use of common things and the provision of services of common interest;
- Execute the deliberations of the assembly;
- Represent the set of joint owners before the administrative authorities;
- Render accounts to the assembly;
- Ensure the implementation of the regulations and legal and administrative provisions relating to the condominium;
- Keep and keep all documents concerning the condominium.
Who can be an administrator?
The post of administrator may be held by one of the joint owners as well as by a third party.
Remuneration of the administrator?
The position of the administrator is remunerable and the remuneration is fixed by the joint-shareholders meeting.
What is the duration of the duties of the administrator?
The term of office shall, unless otherwise provided, be renewable for one year. The director shall remain in office until his successor is elected or appointed.
What if the assembly does not elect an administratorr?
If the assembly does not elect a director, he shall be appointed by the court at the request of any joint owner.
If the trustee has not yet been appointed in court, his duties shall be performed provisionally by the owner whose fraction or fractions represent the largest percentage of invested capital, unless another owner has expressed a willingness to exercise the position and has reported such purpose to the other owners.
When there is more than one partner in equal circumstances, the functions fall on the one corresponding to the first letter in the alphabetical order used in the description of the fractions in the land register.
Removal of the director during his term of office. How can it be done?
The administrator may be dismissed by the court at the request of any partner when it is shown that he has committed wrongdoing or acted negligently in the performance of his duties.
Interposition of actions by the administrator. Is it legal?
The administrator has the legitimacy to act at will, either against any owner or against third parties, in the performance of the duties that belong to him or when authorised by the assembly.
Rental of a self-contained property not inhabited by the owner
What are the obligations of the property owner?
- Inform the administrator of the lease made, as well as his current address;
- To rent the fraction for its intended purpose, mentioned in the constitutive title;
- Inform the lessee of its fraction of the rules that govern the condominium, attaching the condominium regulation to the lease agreement;
- The owner of the fraction is liable to the administrator for the tenant’s acts that violate the law or regulation of the condominium;
- The owner of the parcel is required to pay the common parties’ fruition charges, unless otherwise agreed between the owner / landlord and the lessee.
Who is required to pay the condominium expenses?
As a rule who is required to make the condominium expenses is the owner / landlord of the property. To change this rule there must be an agreement between the owner/landlord and the tenant.
Assembly of owners
What is the assembly of joint owners?
The council of condominiums is the most important body of the condominium, as it is up to you to make decisions on the different questions that are asked.
The assembly of joint owners is limited by the imperative norms of the law and the constitutive title, that is, it has the power to deliberate on all questions concerning the common parts of the building but cannot contradict the law, and can only change the constitutive title by unanimous deliberation ( already discussed in the Condominium Regulations).
What is the mandatory number of assembly meetings per year?
An assembly must be held at the end of the twelve months of administration. The meeting is convened by the administrator for discussion and approval of last year’s accounts and approval of the current year’s budget.
The law states that extraordinary meetings may be held whenever called by the administrator or by owners representing 25% of the value of the building.
What are the rules for meeting convening?
The assembly is convened by registered letter or by email provided that provided in the Condominium Regulations, sent 10 days in advance.
What should be the content of the invitation notice?
The notice shall indicate the date, time, place and agenda of the meeting.
What are the consequences of lack of quorum?
If the number of owners is not enough to be due at the appointed time, the meeting shall be held 30 minutes later, in which case the meeting may decide by majority vote of the members present, provided that they represent at least a quarter of the time. Total value of the building.
Resolutions that need to be approved by unanimous vote may be approved by unanimous vote of the owners present, provided that they represent at least two thirds of the invested capital, subject to approval of the resolution by the absent owners, as follows:
Resolutions must be communicated to all absent members by registered letter or mail if provided for in the Condominium Regulations within 30 days.
The tenants have 10 days after receiving the letter referred to in the previous number to communicate in writing to the joint assembly of their agreement or disagreement.
The silence of the owners must be considered as approval of the deliberation communicated.
Voting - how many votes per property?
The building is considered a globality with one thousand units (one thousand votes). Each fraction corresponds to a part of this whole.
In the constitutive title of the horizontal property the permilage of each fraction is mentioned; a fraction with an area of one hundred and fifty square meters has a permeation greater than a fraction of fifty square meters, with its owner entitled to more votes, in terms of the proportion of the permilage.
In the constitutive title of the horizontal property the permeability of each fraction is mentioned.
Assembly decisions - which majorities?
As a rule, decisions of the council of shareholders are taken by simple majority.
Exceptions to this rule:
1 – Resolutions requiring 2/3 of the total amount:
- Change in the mode of reimbursement for the payment of services of common interest (there may be abstentions and no vote against);
- Works of innovation;
- Alteration of the end of the autonomous fraction, where the constitutive title does not provide for the end of it;
- Alteration of the architectural line and the aesthetic arrangement of the building.
2 – Resolutions requiring unanimity:
- Alteration of the constitutive title;
- Reconstruction works on the building, when destruction exceeds 3/4 of its total value;
- Approval of the condominium regulation (only when it is part of the Horizontal Property Title);
- Decisions on whether to use common parts of the building, such as renting the house from the gate, or the use of common building assets, such as selling certain condominium equipment.
Thus we see that there are certain deliberations that require unanimity or a majority of two-thirds of the votes, and that the systematic lack of one or more tenants makes decision-making impossible.
The law states that all deliberations must be communicated to owners who are not present, by registered letter with acknowledgment of receipt, within thirty days of approval of the minutes.
After receiving the letter, the joint owners have ninety days to inform the joint assembly in writing of their agreement or disagreement.
If these owners do not respond, it is concluded that they agreed with the decisions taken.
Missing an owner on a meeting?
The law allows another person to represent you and a statement of delegation of power must be issued.
Invalid Resolutions. Is it possible to cancel?
Resolutions of the Assembly contrary to the law or regulations previously approved shall be void at the request of any joint owner who has not approved them.
Invalid deliberations may be null, void, and ineffective. The deliberations taken by the Assembly that violate rules of an imperative nature, because they aim at pursuing unavailable interests and public order, are void. In turn, the annulable deliberations are those that, falling on matters that fall within the competence of the condominium assembly, ie, that concern the common parts of the building, violate the precepts of applicable material or procedural law or regulations that are in force. . Finally, ineffective deliberations are those that deal with matters that go beyond the competence of the assembly of owners, either because they concern the exclusive ownership of the owners, or because they represent an interference with the exclusive domain or administration that any owner has over your own fraction.
Within 10 days of the deliberation, for the joint owners present, or counting from their communication, for the absent joint owners, the administrator may be required to convene an extraordinary meeting to be held within 20 days to revoke the deliberations. invalid and ineffective.
Within 30 days of the terms of the previous paragraph, any owner may submit the decision to an arbitration center.
The right to bring the action for annulment shall expire within 20 days of the resolution of the extraordinary meeting or, if it has not been requested, within 60 days of the date of the resolution.
Suspension of deliberations under the procedural law may also be required.
The legal representation of the owners against whom the actions are brought is the responsibility of the administrator or the person designated by the assembly.
Condominium Bank Accounts
How many bills should a condo have?
The condo must have two accounts:
- Current account for current payments (payments for water, electricity, cleaning of stairs…);
- Term account in which contributions to the common reserve fund shall be deposited;
The condominium may have another term account – optional and intended to cover future expenses such as major repairs – which constitutes the condominium savings account.
What is a condominium?
To exist a condominium have to coexist in a building common parts and autonomous fractions.
1) What are the common parts 1? – Article 1421 Civil Code
(a) The following parts of the building are common:
- The ground, as well as the foundations, columns, pillars, main walls and all other parts that make up the structure of the building;
- The roof or roof terraces, even if intended for use by any fraction;
- The entrances, halls, stairs and corridors for use or passage common to two or more owners;
- General facilities for water, electricity, heating, air conditioning, gas, communications and the like.
(b) The following are still assumed to be common:
- The courtyards and gardens attached to the building;
- The lifts;
- The premises intended for the use and housing of the concierge;
- Garages and other parking spaces;
- In general, things that are not affected to the exclusive use of one of the owners.
2) What does the owner have on exclusive property? – Article 1420 Civil code
The fraction that belongs to you.
For a condominium to exist, a building or set of buildings must be divided into distinct parts.
- Autonomous Fractions (Owned by Multiple Individuals)
- Common Parts (Ownership of All)
The condominium presupposes the constitution of the building in horizontal property.
1 The Constitutive Title of horizontal property may affect the exclusive use of a joint owner certain areas of the common parts.
What is a horizontal property?
A building is in the horizontal property regime when all fractions are autonomous, that is, they are distinct, isolated, independent, with exit to the public road or to a common part of the building.
1) What documents are required for the constitution of a building on horizontal property?
- Document issued by the City Council declaring that the autonomous fractions respect the legal requirements;
- Building book issued by the Tax Office;
- Land registry certificate issued by the Land Registry Office.
2) What is the constitutive title of horizontal property? – Article 1418 of the Civil Code
The constitutive title of horizontal property is the document proving that a building or set of buildings is in the horizontal property regime. This document is formalized by public deed.
In this document the description of the various fractions of the building must be described and the value of each fraction expressed as a percentage or per-permeability is fixed.
Example: “Fraction H has 3 rooms, a bathroom, kitchen, a hall and a balcony, valued at PTE 12,000, corresponding to a rent of 20”.
The constitutive title may also contain:
- Indication of the purpose for which each fraction or common part is intended;
- Condominium regulation, regulating the use, enjoyment and conservation of both the common parts and the autonomous fractions.
- Provision of arbitration commitment for the settlement of disputes arising from the condominium relationship.
1) Who must obey the rules of the constitutive title?
All the owners.
2) Can the constitutive title be modified?
Only by public deed and provided there is agreement by all owners. They must sign the public deed, and the trustee, representing all owners, can sign the public deed (for this, the agreement must be in the minutes signed by all).
3) If the constitutive title says nothing about the purpose for which any fraction is intended, is it possible to change the use?
Yes, with the following conditions:
- Deliberation of the assembly of joint owners approving the amendment by majority of 2/3;
- Change of use license issued by the Board.
4) Can the constitutive title be declared null?
Yes, as long as it assigns the fractions different purposes from those mentioned in the project approved by the Chamber or if it does not individualise the fractions or value them.
The nullity of the constitutive title of the horizontal property can be argued by the owners and the Public Prosecution Service, provided there is participation of a public entity responsible for the approval or supervision of the buildings.
5) Can the house of the gatekeeper, a common fraction, be rented to others?
It can as long as it continues to be treated as a common thing. However, the lease of the house of the limited-term gatehouse for residential purposes requires the decision of the condominium assembly, with the approval of a majority of the votes representing the invested capital, since this is an ordinary administration act.
6) Can this fraction only be rented for housing?
No, the autonomous fraction for the gatehouse may be rented for another purpose. However, this implies a resolution of the condominium assembly, pursuant to the provisions of article 1422.4 of the Civil Code, whose amendment needs to be approved by a representative majority of two thirds of the total value of the building. If the constituent title mentions the purpose for which the gatekeeper’s house is intended, it may only be changed by unanimous agreement of the members of the house.
7) Can the constitutive title of horizontal property establish norms contrary to the law?
The rules of the constitutive title may complement the law or, in certain cases, depart from it but only with the permission of the law; You must always respect the law.
In situations not provided for by law, the owners can decide how to operate and manage the building.
Expenditure on current conservation and fruition
Expenditure on current conservation and enjoyment – Article 1424 of the Civil Code.
1) How should the condominium expenses be divided?
The current condominium expenses must be paid by the owners in proportion to the value (permilage) of their fractions.
Exceptions to this rule:
- If the constituent title provides otherwise;
- If the regulation provides for other situations;
- If it is approved in the joint assembly of joint owners by a 2/3 majority the change in the proportion of the reimbursement (there may be abstentions, and no vote against). Thus, the expenses are borne by the owners in equal parts or in proportion to their enjoyment.
2) Method of payment of current condominium expenses.
Typically, each joint owner pays a monthly or quarterly fee to ensure payment of common party charges.
The amount of the quota shall be calculated taking into account the estimated expenses for that year and shall be approved at a joint-owners meeting normally held in the first half of January and convened by the administrator.
3) Who manages this money?
For the normal operation of the condominium have to incur various expenses, including payment to companies that provide cleaning services and maintenance of elevators among other expenses.
It is up to the administrator to manage the money (see administrator functions).
Expenditure on innovations
Expenditure on innovations – Article 1426 Civil Code.
Expenditure on innovations shall be borne by the joint owners as set out in the following point.
By innovation is meant any work that constitutes a modification of the building as originally conceived, licensed and existed at the time the horizontal property was constituted. in substance or form, whether in terms of affect or purpose, including economic
Exception to this rule:
Owners who have not approved the innovation and whose refusal has been judicially considered founded – works of a voluntary nature or not commensurate with the importance of the building.
Expenditure on conservation and improvement works
1) Indispensable and urgent repairs.
These expenses shall be borne by the joint owners under the terms set out in the previous title.
2) Repairs necessary to maintain the building in good condition.
In the event of the destruction of the building or a part representing at least three quarters of its value, either joint owner has the right to demand the sale of the land and materials in such manner as the assembly may designate.
If the destruction reaches a minor part, the assembly may decide, for the majority of the number of the owners and the capital invested in the building, to rebuild it.
Owners who do not wish to participate in reconstruction costs may be required to dispose of their rights to other owners, according to the amount between them agreed or fixed in court.
1) Can a third-floor tenant refuse to pay for lift service on the grounds that he has elevator panic and always climbs the stairs?
No. Since he or his family or friends can always use it. The obligation to bear the costs necessary for the upkeep and enjoyment of the common parts, in particular elevators, does not exist only for owners who are in no way and, to any extent, to avail themselves of the common part in general. I appreciate that, as long as they can objectively do so, and regardless of whether or not they want to use it, they are obliged to make the corresponding contribution. Thus, what matters is the objective possibility of using the lift and not its actual use.
2) If a condominium owner does not live in your fraction is required to pay the charges resulting from condominium life?
When the owner does not live in his / her fraction, he / she is required to contribute to the common expenses of the building, namely, the costs of cleaning the common parts, building management, maintenance and repair of the building and also contribute to the common reserve fund. , intended for ordinary and extraordinary conservation and improvement works, in proportion to the value of their fractions.
3) If a co-owner (see Administrator duties) refuses to pay current condominium expenses, what to do?
The administrator should ask you to pay the overdue condo dues. If the debtor does not pay the amount requested, then the trustee shall bring the consequent legal action against him. Serves the minutes of the condominium assembly as executive title for the executive action. Accordingly, the owners must deliberate at the condominium meeting on the filing of said lawsuit against the debtor, and attach a minutes approving the amounts of the monthly quotas.
4) If a roof terrace used exclusively by a joint owner needs works, should he bear the cost of those works?
- If the necessity of the works results from the improper use of this space, for example the construction by the owner of the terrace beds that caused infiltration, it is his responsibility;
- If the necessity of the works results from facts that are unrelated to the use of the space by this owner, the responsibility is of all the owners.
Works in rented properties
Who is obliged to do these works?
The landlord is obliged to do ordinary conservation, extraordinary and beneficiation works.
- Ordinary conservation works are the cleaning and general repair works of the leased site; works that intend to maintain the fraction with the same conditions as it had on the date of the lease agreement, works that intend to maintain the fraction with the characteristics that it had when issuing a license.
- Extraordinary conservation works are those that cost the landlord at least 2/3 of the annual rent.
What can the tenant do when the landlord does not perform the works under his responsibility?
You may require the City Council to carry out a stability and health check on the leased site.
Subsequently, the City Council notifies the landlord to carry out the works. If the latter does not comply with the order, the House imposes a fine (fine) on him and the House or the tenant himself can substitute for the landlord and carry out the works.
If the lessee decides to do the works, in place of the landlord, he must obtain the approval of the budget by the City Council and, subsequently, may deduct the value of the work in the monthly rent installments.
The lessee is obliged to carry out the necessary works as a result of misuse of the fraction.
Example: If the tenant has broken the glass of a window or damaged the floor tile, it must be replaced.
Works in independent fractions
Is authorization required?
Generally, to do works in your house do not need the permission of the condominium; you can replace the kitchen cabinets, put a new floor in the room, replace your water pipe… but there are other works that the condominium is forbidden to do at home – you cannot change the architectural and aesthetic line of the building, which means saying who can not do works that modify the facade of the building.
This prohibition can be abolished with the approval of the work by a 2/3 majority and the issuance by the City Council of the license.
In order for a joint owner to split its fraction in two, the constitutive title must allow, or else, the assembly of joint owners to approve the work without any vote against. Subsequently, the owner has to apply for city council authorization.
The two constituted fractions have to be autonomous, distinct, isolated and independent with exit to the public road or to a common part of the building.
If a building owner wishes to join two separate fractions of the building, he can do so without permission from the building assembly, but the change cannot change the building’s sturdy structure (pillars, beams), facade, roof shape and the size of the building.
The condominium has yet to submit to the City Council information about the work and a disclaimer.
If the Clearinghouse does not respond negatively, works may begin within 30 days of delivery of the documents.
If a condominium owner wishes to install an outdoor antenna, he / she should notify the administrator as the condominium should consider installing a collective antenna to replace individual ones, as these may affect the aesthetics of the building or make it difficult to use the common terrace.
The costs of installing a collective antenna should be borne by all owners in proportion to their quotas.
Works with innovations are always optional as they are not essential to building maintenance (see Condominium Expenses).
Works with indispensable and urgent repairs are mandatory and priority.
Examples of situations that require immediate works:
- Gas leaks in the conduit of the building;
- Breakage in water pipes;
1) Whose responsibility is it for the execution of these works?
The danger created by these situations requires that rapid decisions be made by the building administrator; if the latter does not act, because he is not present or because he is not diligent, any partner can be responsible for the reparation.
Subsequently, a meeting of joint owners must be convened to be analyzed and approved by the joint owner.
2) Who bears the costs of these works?
Owners in proportion to their shares.
Conservation and beneficiation works
The conservation of the building is the responsibility of all owners.
Destruction of the building
An uncommon situation is the destruction of the building, but it can happen as a result of a disaster or its advanced age.
In the event of destruction of the building or a part representing at least 3/4 of its value, any joint venture may require the sale of the land and materials.
The sale will be made as determined by the assembly.
If the destruction affects a smaller part of the building, the council may decide that the building shall be rebuilt, and shall decide by a majority of the number of owners and a majority of the capital invested; special double majority situation.
Owners who do not want reconstruction may be required to sell their fractions to other owners.
Private Property Protection
Prohibitions and obligations on owners
Prohibitions and Obligations on Owners – Article 1422 Civil Code
Owners, in relations with one another, are generally subject to the fractions that belong exclusively to them and to the common parts, to the limitations imposed on the owners and co-owners of immovable property.
What are the limitations on the exercise of rights of owners?
It is especially forbidden to the owners:
- Harm, either with new works or for lack of repair, the safety, the architectural line or the aesthetic arrangement of the building;
- To assign its fraction to offensive uses of good manners;
- Give it different use for its intended purpose;
- Practice any acts or activities that have been prohibited in the constitutive title or, subsequently, by deliberation of the assembly of joint owners approved without opposition.
Can the owner carry out works that modify the architectural line or the aesthetic arrangement of the building?
Yes. To do so:
- It cannot endanger the safety of the building;
- Authorization must be requested from the joint owners meeting and must be given by a 2/3 majority;
- Subsequently, you will need to apply to the City Council for a license.
Under the law (cf. article 1429-A of the Civil Code), the regulation is a document containing rules on “the use, enjoyment and conservation of common parts”.
Obligation or not of its elaboration
The drafting of the regulation is only mandatory when the building has more than four owners and if there is no longer a regulation that is part of the constitutive title.
Entity that makes the regulation
The regulation must be drawn up by the assembly of joint owners. If it does not do so, it should be the administrator who suppresses this shortage.
Entities that are bound by the rules contained in the regulation
- Owners / Owners;
- Lenders, that is, those who live in the fraction on loan;
- Usufructuaries, that is, those who have the right to live in the fraction without being able to sell it.
Fire protection of the building is compulsory both for the autonomous fractions and for the common parts.
Who is required to enter into compulsory insurance?
Owners individually, thus holding the structure of their home and the percentage of common parts (roof, walls, stairs) belonging to them.
The value of the insurance must be fixed by the assembly as well as the time limit for the insurance. If they do not do so, the administrator must do so and the joint owners must pay the premium.
Is the annual insurance update mandatory?
Yes. The council of owners must decide on the update. If not, the administrator has to update the insurance, using the index published quarterly by the Portuguese Insurance Institute.
There are insurances that cover various risks besides the risk of fire; they are multi risk insurance, namely multi risk housing and multi risk condominium. Multi-risk condo insurance is group insurance that covers all owners, so it is expected to be cheaper.
If the owners of a building have individual fire insurance or individual multi-risk home insurance and wish to take out multi-risk condominium insurance, they must authorize the homeowner, the administrator to take out the insurance and notify their insurer at least one month in advance. of the annuity which do not intend to renew the insurance.
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