G.C. from Hartford County writes:
Dear Mister Condo,
Do most associations in Connecticut have rules against fire pits? Or rules about whether they can be on decks or on ground level? Is there any reason why an association could not have a rule prohibiting fire pits?
Mister Condo replies:
G.C., many towns and cities have rules against grills and fire pits in high density housing areas like condos and apartments and for good reason. One need only turn on the morning news to see the devastation that fire brings to any home but especially homes that are built so closely together as condos often are. That being said, rules and enforcement of rules about fire pits vary widely from condo to condo. There is no reason that I can think of that an association could not ban the use of fire pits. Of course, it is a political issue if the community is split on their desire to use a fire pit. The easy decision is to forbid their use due to the possibility of fire and loss of property and life to association members. However, fire pit enthusiasts may argue that as long as the fire pit is attended and properly maintained there is no issue. The ultimate decision is that of the Board and unit owners who should hold a vote to either ban or allow fire pits although local law trumps any association rule. If the law is being broken, local authorities will take action if alerted. It is a tricky issue and I wish you good luck in resolving it for your association.