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Lofts and Condos: Common Areas

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By : Andy Asbury    99 or more times read
When people buy a condo or loft, not only do they buy a home in which to live, they also buy access to conference or party rooms, pools or fitness centers, rooftop spaces and lawns with grills and picnic tables. And those are just some of the common areas that can be found in loft and condo units.

Common areas refer to any part of the building or grounds to which all owners share access. That includes fun spots like pools and party rooms, as well as necessary spots such as hallways and stairways. They are areas that all owners can use, and of which all owners, typically through a maintenance fee, share responsibility.

Issues arising as a result of common areas are not especially common, but they can occur. Here are some things to think about:

Maintenance: Just as two single-family home owners may have very different ideas about what constitutes a well-manicured lawn, so, too, may loft or condo owners. What one person thinks is a neat and tidy lawn or hallway, another person may think is a mess. Since all owners pay for maintenance of common areas, if you think it is sub-par, notify the association or a member of the board of directors for the building. It may be something that easily can be changed.

Plan ahead: People often like to use party rooms or pools when they host an event such as a birthday party. But if other owners are using the areas when you planned to use them, you probably do not have much recourse since they have as much right to them as you do. If you are planning a big party or event, notifying the other tenants in the building well in advance can head off problems. You may even consider drawing up a schedule and posting it outside of the room. That way, everyone can see what people have planned.

Clean up: If you are not a particularly neat person, make sure you keep that character trait confined to your loft or condo. One of the quickest ways to irritate your neighbors is to leave behind a mess, especially in the common areas of the building. It will not take them long to figure out you are the culprit.

Keep it common: Since all tenants share ownership of common areas, some can be tempted to use them to store their personal belongings. They may keep a life jacket by the pool, their bike in the hallway, or their lawn chairs stacked against an exterior wall. But doing so is not a good idea, and it is likely the bylaws of the association prevent it. Not only could the items get stolen or broken, but also if everyone did it, the clutter soon would become unmanageable.
Explore Minneapolis condos online at For more information about Minneapolis lofts contact Andy Asbury's team of lofts and condos agents at Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Area Leaders.

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