Condominium Vocabulary

Bylaws: Operating rules for the condo association authorizing the board of directors to create a budget, assess fees, hire professional management staff and perform other operating duties.

Capital Improvement Reserves: An amount of money designated within a condominium association to pay for the future replacement of building systems.

Common Areas: The shared ownership portions of a condominium complex (such as the lobby, recreational areas, parking lot, and underlying land on which buildings are located).

Condominium Homeowners’ Association: Members of the community drawn from the building’s apartment owners that sets policy and manages expenses, under direction of an elected board of directors.

Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CC&Rs): Limitations on ways the property can be put to use and penalties for failure to comply.

General Common Elements: The features of a property that are normally in common use by all of the condominium residents, for example: hallways, grounds, or pool.

Limited Common Elements: The features of a property that are typically maintained by the condominium association, but the use is limited to only one unit, for example: balconies or reserved parking spaces

Maintenance Fee: Assessment, usually paid monthly charged by the condominium homeowners’ association to cover the cost of maintaining or operating the property.

Master deed: Document establishing project as a condominium giving residents authority to form an operating association with legal descriptions of all individual units and common areas.

Operating Budget: A budget adopted by the condominium board of directors that collects monthly maintenance fees from each owner and pays operating expenses, such as: common area cleaning, maintainance and utilities, salaries, building insurance, and trash pickup.