Ownership & Alterations

Regulations regarding Property Ownership and Alterations within a Condominium Association

Property Ownership within the Condominium Community

Understanding property ownership is an essential part of condominium living.  In a condominium association, the unit owners own everything - the units, buildings, pools, tennis courts, lawns, parking lots, roadways, etc.  The association owns nothing and consequently pays no property taxes.

The property that you own is used and shared in different ways based on its classification.  All condominium property in a multicondominium association is included within the following categories:

  1. Unit Ownership - That portion of the condominium property subject to private exclusive ownership and use by the condominium owner of record. (e.g., appliances, fixtures, floor & wall coverings, inside wiring/plumbing, windows, etc.)
  1. Limited Common Elements - The portion of condominium property (generally the patios and balconies at Jupiter Bay) subject to association maintenance but reserved for the exclusive use of the unit owner.
  1. Individual Association (Building) Common Elements - The common elements that are part of a building or attached to a building and are for exclusive use by the residents of the building. In other words, those parts of a building that are neither limited common elements nor owned by a unit owner.
  1. Community Shared Common Elements - All other parts of the condominium complex that are shared equally by all owners within the community. (e.g., recreational facilities, parking lots, roadways, etc.)

These distinctions are crucial in properly managing the Association's finances, in that they dictate which expenses are associated with each ownership category.  Correspondingly, they are used to determine which owners pay for the maintenance and repair of the various parts of the association property.


There are two types of condominium association alterations: 1) unit and 2) common areas. Following are the statutes regulating each:

  1. Unit Alterations. According to FL Statute 718.111(11)(g)1. "A unit owner may undertake reconstruction work on portions of the unit with the prior written consent of the board of administration. However, such work may be conditioned upon the approval of the repair methods, the qualifications of the proposed contractor, or the contract that is used for that purpose. A unit owner must obtain all required governmental permits and approvals before commencing reconstruction." FL Stature 718.113(3) provides further restrictions: "A unit owner shall not do anything within his or her unit or on the common elements which would adversely affect the safety or soundness of the common elements or any portion of the association property or condominium property which is to be maintained by the association."
  1. Common Area Alterations. Per FL Statute 718.113(2)(a): "There shall be no material alteration or substantial additions to the common elements or to real property which is association property, except in a manner provided in the declaration as originally recorded or as amended under the procedures provided therein. If the declaration as originally recorded or as amended under the procedures provided therein does not specify the procedure for approval of material alterations or substantial additions, 75 percent of the total voting interests of the association must approve the alterations or additions before the material alterations or substantial additions are commenced. "