Condominium owners’ association – The condominium owners’ association (WEG) is one of the many forms of housing that exist in Germany. It is a community of owners who share a residential complex. In this article, we would like to provide you with basic information about the WEG and go into the most important aspects, such as the rights and obligations of the owners and the owners’ meeting. In addition, how is the complex managed? And how are the costs divided? Read everything about the topic in this article!
Homeowners’ association at a glance
A condominium owners’ association (WEG) is a community of owners who own one or more apartments in a common building. So when you buy an apartment unit in a property, you automatically become a co-owner and a part of the community of owners.
The community of owners can be described like this:
Community of all owners of a property.
The community of owners is responsible for the management, maintenance and modernization of the common property. Decisions are made at the owners’ meeting, where each owner has one vote. An administrator is appointed to represent the interests of the owners and is responsible for the management and maintenance of the common property. The condominium owners’ association is a legal entity and can, for example, conclude contracts or appear in court.
Homeowners’ association at a glance:
- A WEG is the community of all owners of a property
- Each owner can represent his right to vote at the meeting of owners
- Each owner has a certain co-ownership share in the common property
- Each member of a WEG must bear costs for the common property
- Each owner is responsible for his or her own special property
- Each owner has to fulfill certain rights and obligations
- Each COA must have certain documents that set out rules and boundaries
The distribution of property in a condominium owners’ association is defined in the declaration of division. There, it is described in detail which parts of the building are assigned to separate property and which are considered common property.
Each owner has a co-ownership share in the common property of the building, such as the land, the facade, the staircase or the roof. The size of the share depends on the size of the respective apartment in relation to the total living space of the building.
For this purpose, each owner occupies special ownership of his or her apartment. This means that he has sole ownership of his apartment and can use and manage it freely.
This is the right of each owner:
- Co-owner of the common property
- Special ownership of own apartment
Rights and duties of the WEG
Each owner of a condominium association has certain rights and obligations arising from the Condominium Act and the declaration of division. In this section, we will look at these aspects in more detail and explain what rights and obligations an owner has.
The rights and obligations in a WEG include:
- Owners’ meeting
Management and maintenance
The owners are jointly responsible for the management and maintenance of the common property. This includes, for example, the maintenance of the garden, the cleaning of the staircase or the repair of the roof. The costs are apportioned to the owners in proportion to their ownership shares.
This duty has every owner:
- Responsible for common property
- Responsible for internal or external management
Participation in the owners’ meeting
The owners’ meeting is the central body of the condominium owners’ association and is used to make important decisions for the common property. It is therefore important that the owners attend the meeting and express their opinions. However, there is no obligation to attend.
Minutes of the owners’ meeting must be kept and signed by an owner and the administrator. The minutes must contain all resolutions passed and voting results.
Are you interested in the topic of owners’ meetings? Learn more here!
Voting procedure and resolution
In the owners’ meeting, decisions are made by voting. There are different voting procedures, e.g. simple majority, qualified majority or unanimous decision. A resolution is only valid if it has been properly passed and does not violate any laws or the declaration of division.
House Rules, Declaration of Partition & Co.
In order to regulate the ownership shares in a house with several parties and to guarantee a harmonious living together, a written order is needed. Therefore, every multi-party house has a declaration of division, community rules and house rules.
The house rules are the most important document and, from the legal point of view, the first place to regulate the operation in a multi-apartment building. They are drawn up by the homeowners’ association or the appointed manager and are an obligation for them.
The community rules regulate all regulations and laws for living together in the residential complex and are legally behind the house rules. Since the community rules can be determined by the owners themselves, changes may be decided unanimously at the owners’ meeting.
The declaration of division of a property exists whenever the overall property is split into individual parts, such as individual residential units. It therefore describes the formal division of the property and thereby defines the rights and obligations of the owners.
Order of the WEG at a glance:
- House rules: regulates operation in multi-apartment building
- Community rules: regulates all the rules and laws for living together in the residential complex.
- Declaration of division: thus describes the formal division of the property