A strata development is a building or land that is divided into separate strata lots, which are often referred to as strata units. In townhouses and condominiums, the strata lot generally ends at the center of the walls, floors and ceilings, but could have different boundaries if shown on the strata plan. All strata developments have a strata plan and the lots are designated as “SL” with a strata lot number in it. Click here to view a sample strata plan
Any part of the land and buildings shown on the strata plan that is not part of a strata lot is considered common property. Typically, common property incudes elevators, hallways, recreational amenities, building exteriors such as roofs etc. On a strata plan, the common properties are designated as “C”. Common property is owned collectively by the strata lot owners, as tenants in common. Owners can use the common areas subject to the restrictions of the Strata Property Act, the rules, regulations, and bylaws of the strata corporation. Click here to for more info on common property.
LIMITED COMMON PROPERTY (LCP)
Limited common property (LCP) is common property that has been designated on the strata plan for the exclusive use of one or more strata lots. Balconies and parking spaces are commonly designated as limited common property. Limited common property is often designated on the strata plan as “LCP” with the strata lot number after it which states to which strata lot has the exclusive use to that particular area. Click here for more info on common property
PARKING STALLS & STORAGE LOCKERS
Parking stalls and storage lockers are allocated in many different ways.
They can be either:
- Part of a strata lot (Completely separate from the unit. Can be sold separately from the strata unit.)
- Separate strata lot (Part of the same lot as the strata unit and share the same strata lot number and cannot be separated.)
- Limited common property (Owned by all owners in the complex. Exclusive use given to owner)
- Common property as: (Owned by all owners. These stalls can be allocated in 3 different ways)
a) Granted as exclusive use
b) Assignment of rights under a lease or license
c) Common use of parking spaces
More info on parking stalls and storage lockers
The owners of the strata lots are the members of the strata corporation. The strata corporation is responsible for managing and maintaining the common property and assets of the strata development for the benefit of all of its owners. A strata corporation is a legal entity with all the powers of a natural person who has full capacity. It can enter into contracts and hire employees.
More on strata corporations
All of the owners of a strata building are responsible for maintaining and repairing the common property. To effectively carry out the strata corporation’s duties to repair and maintain the common property, each strata corporation will elect a strata council made up of a group of owners to oversee the day-to-day operations of the building and fulfill the strata corporation’s duties. The strata council’s role is to act as the managing body for the strata corporation and make daily decisions that enable the strata corporation to operate smoothly and operate according to the Strata Property Act, regulations, bylaws and rules, or a majority vote of the owners.
More on strata councils.
The strata council (or section executive) can hire a strata manager and delegate certain powers to perform some or most of the functions of the strata council. However, the strata council is still ultimately responsible for ensuring that its obligations under the Strata Property Act are fulfilled.
STRATA PROPERTY MANAGING COMPANIES
While some strata corporations are self managed, many now contract the services of a third party licensed strata property managing company to manage and assist the strata council in operating the strata corporation. The manager can handle paperwork, prepare for meetings, take minutes, hire qualified services, assist as an advisor, bookkeeping money collector etc.
More on strata property managers
Bottom line is that a strata property is a type of community living with a group of individual owners that are part of a whole. When you purchase an individual strata lot, you are also purchasing an interest in common property and common assets owned by your strata corporation which is made up of every single owner in that particular strata development.