Changing a Limited Common Element to a Common Element

A.B. from Fairfield County writes:

Dear Mister Condo,

Our Board wants to change the stoops and steps from a limited common area to a common area which would make the association and home owners responsible for repairs and replacements. My question is: Does this need to be voted on by the whole community or can the Board vote to change it on their own?

Mister Condo replies:

A.B., there are very particular procedures for making such a change. My advice is for the association to consult with a qualified community association attorney before making such a change because a legal misstep here could cost the association a lot of money in the future. I reached out to one such attorney and asked for an opinion. Here is what the attorney had to say:

“Changing a limited common element to a common element available for use by all of the units typically requires amending the declaration by two-thirds vote of all of the owners plus the consent of the unit owner or owners to whom the limited common element is assigned.  However, your declaration may specify a different procedure or more stringent requirements. Your association should consult with an attorney before pursuing this change.”

Sounds like good advice to me, A.B.. Good luck!

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