Condominium and Cooperative Law in Washington
Cooperative and condominium communities are examples of a class of housing developments known as "common interest communities."
This is a type of community in which the individual residents rent or own residential units in a building, or collection of buildings, but are collectively accountable for taking maintaining the common areas in their communities, such as lawns, gardens, swimming pools, and the like. This responsibility is usually taken care of by charging the residents a periodic maintenance fee, to pay for the upkeep of the common areas.
Just looking at the outside (or inside, for that matter) of a condo or cooperative community, you likely can't tell which it is.
This is because there are no defining physical characteristics which are distinct to one type of cooperative community, but not the other. The significant differences aren't embodied in physical characteristics, but in the legal ownership arrangement governing the communities: in a condominium community, the residents own the units they live in. In a cooperative community, the units are rented.
Laws and Regulations Concerning Common Interest Communities in Washougal, Washington
Numerous Washougal, Washington 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.
Because the land they occupy is usually 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 usually 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 Washougal, Washington. This conduct is illegal under state and federal law, and can result in grave civil penalties.
Can a Washougal, Washington Attorney Help?
If you have problems with your landlord, your homeowners association, or a neighbor, a reputable Washougal, Washington real estate lawyer may prove invaluable.