Explaining Condo Act

What is the Condominium Act 1998?


The Condominium Act is the Provincial Legislative Act which regulates and identifies the mandates and governing rules on the operations of Condominium Corporations within the Province. The Condominium Act 1998 came into force on May 5, 2001 at which time Ministry Staff identified the various types of condominiums which were permitted under the Act.

Every Province in Canada has their own Act because the Ministry of Housing is a Provincial jurisdiction however the Condominium Act falls under the umbrella of the Ministry of Consumer Services in Ontario. We have several different Acts ie Traffic Act, Health and Safety Act etc. Many of the Acts are regulated with the imposition of fines for those who are in contravention of the Act. A perfect example would be the Traffic Act; if you run a red light and receive a ticket from a Police Officer, you are fined under the Act. You can pay the fine or you can go to court to dispute the ticket. The Provincial Traffic Act outlines what is allowed and what is not.

COA has recommended that our Provincial Government create a "Standardized Condominium Document" to fit all condominiums in the general sense where the key points are duplicated and one can fit all. The By-Laws can then be created for specifics to each building.

Every Condominium has a Declaration (Condominium Document) and By-Laws in accordance to the Condominium Act. When a building is built generally the Builders Lawyer will prepare this paperwork exclusive to that particular building. These documents vary from Condominium to Condominium. By-Laws can be changed with majority vote in accordance with the Condo Act.

COA is concerned that the Condominium Act, Condominium Documents and By Laws are too confusing for Condo Owners. Unless you are an expert in Condominium Law; they are finding it difficult to read and understand. We have identified that many Condo Board of Directors do not understand them either. Some are unaware that they are jeopardizing the operations and community lifestyle of their buildings.

The Condominium Act outlines the full operations of the Condominium to include:

  • Registration and Creation
  • Ownership
  • Corporation Guidelines
  • Directors and Officers
  • Transfer of Control by Declarant (Builder)
  • Owners and Meetings
  • Auditors and Financial Statements
  • Sale and Lease of Units
  • Operatons
  • Amendments to the Declaration and Descriptions
  • Termination of Agreements

The Act and the Regulations can be found at www.e-laws.gov.on.ca (see Disclaimer)

The various types of Condominiums under the Condominium Act 1998 are:

  • Standard Condominiums
  • Leasehold Condominiums
  • Vacant Land Condominiums
  • Common Element Condominiums
  • Phased Condominiums
  • Almalgamated Condominiums

The most common condominium is the Standard Condominiums which includes low-rise and high-rise apartment buildings and low-rise stacked townhomes and standard townhomes.