Last Updated on March 25, 2024

What is Exclusive Use Common Property? | Real Estate Definition

By Alan F Macdonald

What is a Exclusive Use Common Property?

Exclusive use common property in a condominium are areas that belong to the condo corporation (all the condo owners), but only a specific unit occupant may use them. This can include areas that are leased by the unit owner, or other areas that only the owner has access to.

Real Estate Agent Explains Exclusive Use Common Property

Each unit owner has control of their own unit and shares the majority of the common property with all the other residents at the condo. Areas that don’t belong to the occupant that they still get to use exclusively can be areas like:

  • Balconies
  • Parking stalls (assigned or leased)
  • Patios
  • Back yards (in the case of a townhouse)
  • Storage units
  • Driveways leading to unit owners’ garages

These areas should be defined in the condo bylaws specifically as exclusive use areas so that there is no confusion about who is allowed to use them. Also, specifics about whether a unit owner can modify these areas should be documented in the bylaws. You may not own the area but it does, in a sense, belong to you. The condominium board can lease out common areas to residents, and during the term of the lease those places are for the leaseholder’s exclusive use.

Besides general cleaning, the maintenance of common property – exclusive or not – is the responsibility of the condominium corporation.

A condominium balcony in Callingwood, Edmonton
A balcony is a very common example of exclusive use common property.

Why Does It Matter?

If you own a condominium unit that has a storage locker in the basement, you definitely want to know if that is your exclusive use area. The same goes for your parking stall and balcony. You wouldn’t want to come home and find your neighbour parked in your spot or sitting on your patio. Most of these seem like common sense, but they still need to be written down – whether the area is exclusive or not will affect how you live and how you enjoy your condo.

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