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Condominium and Cooperative Law in Arkansas

Condominiums and cooperatives are forms of "common interest" communities.

They are communities where each individual or family resident rents or owns a unit which is part of a larger building, containing other, similar, residential units. The residents are accountable responsible for the maintenance of the common areas of their living areas, such as gardens, walkways, lawns, and swimming pools. They typically meet this responsibility by paying a monthly fee to support this maintenance.

If you just look at one of these communities, you won't be able to tell whether it's a cooperative or a condominium community.

There are no physical features distinct to either one, which can be used to distinguish them. Rather, the difference lies in the legal arrangement that regulates the relationships between the residents and managers. In condominium communities, the residents own the units they live in, and collectively own the land and buildings in which they are located. In a cooperative community, the units are rented, and are owned by a single entity.

Laws and Regulations Concerning Common Interest Communities in Fort Smith, Arkansas

There are numerous laws in Fort Smith, Arkansas that might be applicable to common interest communities. But most of these laws are not unique to common-interest communities. Rather, they usually concern zoning, land use, and contract law, which are applicable to most other types of real estate, as well.

The daily lives of residents, and what they are and aren't allowed to do in their residences, will be far more heavily impacted by rules and regulations that the homeowner's association, or the owner of the land, has imposed.

The land on which these communities sit is private property, so the owners have substantial leeway when it comes to setting rules regarding what tenants can and can't do on the property. These rules usually govern things like noise levels, cleanliness, long-term guests, and pets. They are often designed with the goal of balancing residents' rights to a clean and quiet neighborhood, with their individual autonomy.

The power of landowners is limited, however, and there are some rules that cannot be given legal effect. For example, in Fort Smith, Arkansas, any rule which would exclude residents based on their race is completely unenforceable. Such discrimination is clearly prohibited under federal law, private property rights notwithstanding.

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Can a Fort Smith, Arkansas Attorney Help?

If you have a problem with your landlord, your community association, or a neighbor (which the landlord is unwilling or unable to address), an efficient real estate attorney in Fort Smith, Arkansas will be able to help.

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