Apartment rights and Owners’ Associations
If an owner splits up a building with its accompanying ground, several apartment rights will come into existence. The purchaser of the apartment right will hereby acquire a share in the (co) ownership of the building and the ground forming part thereof with the exclusive right of use of a private part, namely the apartment. Although it usually concerns an owner who splits up the property rights, it is also possible that a leaseholder or superficiary splits up his or her right of leasehold or right of superficies. In that case, the apartment right will give the right to a share of the right of leasehold or right of superficies.
Membership of the Owners’ Association
All apartment owners are obliged to be members of the official Owners’ Association. The objective of this special association is to take care of the joint interests of the owners. Therefore the Owners’ Association is obliged to maintain a reserve fund for the purpose of covering costs other than the usual annual costs, such as the costs of (major) maintenance.
The Owners’ Association cannot be deemed to be the owner of the building; all apartment owners are jointly owner. The rights and duties of the apartment owners are stated, among other things, in the deed of division and the regulations of the Owners’ Association. For example, the maintenance of the communal parts of the building is a joint obligation of all owners. In some cases, the regulations of the Owners’ Association is added to by internal regulations. The deed of division can also be amended later on. It is in principle required for this that a majority of the members of the Owners’ Association agree to this. If a majority is not achieved, then alternative permission from the Subdistrict Court can be applied for. The Owners’ Association must be registered upon its foundation in the Commercial Register of the Chamber of Commerce. If this does not take place, this will constitute a breach of the Economic Offences Act.
Disputes with the Owners’ Association
Disputes between the Owners’ Association and one or more apartment owners regularly arise regarding the aforementioned rights and duties. For example, this could concern the apportionment of specific costs related to the use of facilities. Discussions can also arise between the Owners’ Association and third parties, such as with the professional director or manager of the Owners’ Association about their performance of duties or with contractors or painters who deliver inadequate work during the carrying out of maintenance work.
Asselbergs & Klinkhamer Advocaten has a wealth of experience in the field of apartment rights and advises and brings proceedings for Owners’ Associations as well as individual apartment owners in the event of conflicts. We research how matters are arranged in accordance with the deed and regulations and how these problems can be resolved. In some cases going to court can be avoided and we act as independent mediator if the situation offers this possibility.
We can also assist an Owners’ Association with the drawing up of deeds of division and (standing orders) rules and regulations. We hereby offer a comprehensive explanation of the contents of the various provisions as a result of which you will acquire insight into the legal positions if there are (mutual) problems. Would you like to know more about apartment rights and how Asselbergs & Klinkhamer Advocaten can assist you? Then please contact us. We would like to hear from you.