A common question that many Cyprus property management companies are asked by villa and apartment owners who have access to shared common areas is “why must we have communal maintenance”? The question most often than not arises from the concern over the shared cost of this communal maintenance. Some property owners even think that the developer who built the property is responsible for the communal maintenance which may be forgiven as it is often they who initially manage such maintenance.
The issue of communal spaces
Here in Cyprus, there have been some long-standing issues for many owners who have purchased apartments and even villas on developments that include communal (shared spaces) that they have access to and the use of. From roads and swimming pools to stairwells and even the shell of a building, these and many other areas may be classified as communal areas. Thanks to the property boom a few years back, a huge number of such developments sprang up and it wasn’t until owners started using their properties that some of these issues started to become more apparent.
Who is responsible for the communal areas and their maintenance?
Due to the many issues and difficulties that residents and owners have suffered concerning communal areas in recent years the matter has come under close scrutiny by all the parties involved. While the developers who built such properties have made every effort to tempt buyers by including pool areas, gardens, and other shared spaces, they either cannot or prefer not to work for free. Once they have ensured that everything is “up to standard” and provided that they have decided not to provide (and charge for) on-going maintenance, the responsibility passes to the property owners.
Living with the reality of communal areas
The reality is that if owners want to maintain the use of paths, roads, swimming pools, and retain access to their properties via the shared stairways and corridors, they are, by default agreeing to use communal areas. As we have already touched upon, of course, these areas won’t clean, maintain, and repair themselves, which tends to suggest that anyone who is at liberty to make use of them could also be responsible for the cost of such services.
The short answer as to why you need communal maintenance
The bottom line is that if you own a property on such a development, you will have communal areas at your disposal and somebody has to maintain them. That costs money and somebody has to foot the bill which means anyone who has the potential to use them will have to share the cost of that maintenance. Under clarification by lawyers, exempting yourself from using them doesn’t excuse you from contributing towards the cost of such maintenance as they are availed to you anyway.
So who is going to carry out your communal maintenance?
Unless you want to spend your own time cleaning, repairing, painting, and generally maintaining all of the communal areas on your complex, you are going to need someone to do it on your own and every other property owner’s behalf.
By simply instructing a company to do so “off your own back” unless you can reach an agreement with every other resident you could end up footing most if not all of the cost of such maintenance yourself!
Communal maintenance – a fact of complex life
Due to how these areas are used and designated, makes communal areas an inescapable fact of complex living and the issues connected to maintaining increase dramatically where apartments are concerned. Once residents and owners come to terms with the reality of communal maintenance and its inherent cost, their next logical step will be working out the most cost-effective way to deal with the expense of such maintenance. The issues that come to the fore when addressing communal maintenance can be both frustrating and costly unless residents take advantage of professional help in dealing with them.
Knowing where to turn in solving your communal maintenance issues
One of the most efficient ways to deal with communal maintenance is by passing it over to a property management company that already has a proven track record in dealing with communal areas. They will most likely be partnered with a Cyprus lawyer who has experience in such issues and is able to ensure that everyone who has access to the communal areas and facilities makes a financial contribution. From forming a residents committee and managing budgets to ensuring that there is provision for any unforeseen future expense, a professional property management company is able to assist you in taking care of them all.
To learn more about how a professional company can provide a working framework to deal with your communal maintenance contact the Cyprus property management experts now!