Condominium and Cooperative Law in California
Condominiums and cooperatives are forms of "common interest" communities.
They are communities where each individual or family resident rents or owns an 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.
Merely viewing one of these communities from the outside (or inside) will not let you discern whether it's a cooperative or 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 El Cerrito, California
Numerous El Cerrito, California laws affect common-interest communities. However, almost all of these laws govern real estate more generally, and there are very few laws written particularly for common interest communities. Such generally-applicable laws include zoning regulations, contracts, and the relations between landlords and tenants.
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.
Because the land they occupy is typically private property, it is the owners of this property who make most of the rules that will affect your daily conduct. A responsible manager will typically make rules designed to balance your right to live as you please in your own residence, with the right your neighbors have to a clean, safe, and quiet living environment.
This authority, however, has limits. There are some rules which landowners cannot impose. Most obviously, they can't bar people from renting or buying units based on their race, religion, or national origin in El Cerrito, California. This conduct is illegal under state and federal law, and can result in grave civil penalties.
Can a El Cerrito, California Attorney Help?
If you have problems with your landlord, your homeowners association, or a neighbor, a reliable El Cerrito, California real estate lawyer may prove invaluable.