Types of Condominiums: Part 2: Standard Condominiums

This is part two of a five-part series on the types of condominiums. In the first post we briefly discussed the main two types of condominiums (freehold and leasehold). The rest of this series will describe the different subtypes of freehold condominiums. In this post, we describe a standard condominium.

What is a Standard Condominium?

The phrase “standard” simply means that it is not one of the other types of condominiums permitted by the Act. A standard condominium plan is the form of condominium that people tend to be most familiar with as it is the most common type of condominium. Prior to May 5, 2001, all condominiums were standard condominiums. After May 5, 2001, there are different types of condominiums, but the standard condominium remains the most common type.  

Notwithstanding its name, there is very little that is standard about standard condominiums! There is no standard physical layout or structure. Some standard condominiums are high-rise apartments, some townhouses, some detached dwellings, and some are a combination. The same goes for the uses. Some standard condominiums are mainly comprised of residential units, some commercial, and some mixed uses. The common elements can vary significantly as well, with some standard condominiums having only roads and landscaping as common elements and others having pools, gyms, party rooms, guest rooms, and other recreational amenities. For these reasons, the declaration, by-laws, and rules of a one standard condominium may vary significantly from those of another.

Key Features

All of the Condominium Act, 1998 (the “Act”) applies to standard condominiums, except for Parts X, XII, and XII which apply to common elements, vacant land, and leasehold condominiums. The key features of standard condominiums that differ from the other types are:

  • Maintenance and Repair: The unit owners typically maintain their own units and repair them after damage, but the Declaration might require the condominium to maintain or repair a unit or part of a unit. The condominium typically maintains and repairs after damage the common elements, but owners are sometimes responsible for the exclusive use common elements for their units.  See section 91 of the Act for more information about what maintenance and repair obligation can be changed between the condominium and unit owners.
  • Insurance: the condominium is responsible for ensuring the units up to the standard unit definition and owners are only responsible for insuring the improvements to their units. The standard unit is typically defined in a by-law (but might be in a schedule provided by the declarant on turn-over).  

In our next post we will discuss the phased standard condominium.