C.W. from Fairfield County, Connecticut writes:
Dear Mister Condo,
Our condo has a deck off the kitchen and a lower level with sliding glass doors to an area which includes the space under the upstairs deck. We want to build a patio in the outdoor space under the deck and in front of the sliding glass doors downstairs. The HOA says we can build up outside to the foot print of the house, not in the common area. how do you determine what the foot print of the house is in that lower level outdoor space? We appreciate your input, please forward any reference to the law or guidelines and how to retrieve it. Thanks.
Mister Condo replies:
C.W., since I am not an attorney I cannot offer you legal advice here but I will let you know what I know as friendly advice. Do you have a copy of the plot of your home? It might be in your closing documents or you might have to go to the local land office or City Hall to get a copy. The plot shows your home’s footprint and boundaries that describe the property. In other words, the real estate you actually own as opposed to the association’s real estate. My guess is that there isn’t too much land outside of the area directly under your stair case but you will definitely need to know before you begin any construction. Otherwise, the HOA would be well within their right to make you remove any structure that encroaches on the HOA common areas. That might not make your project worthwhile so be sure you get the exact information before you commit to building anything in the space. All the best!