Category Archives: Real Estate



 Condominium – a residential building in Manhattan.

P360 Spaces LLC – the owner of a commercial space in the Condominium (the “Front Unit”)

Patricia and Darren Orlando – the owners of a residential space in the Condominium (the “Back Unit”)

Ronnie Peters – the President and managing member of P360 Spaces LLC

 The Mystery:

The original (2003) Declaration of Condominium stated that the percentage interest of each unit was based upon “floor space and the availability of common elements for exclusive and shared use”.  The Declaration also stated that there were no “limited common elements” appurtenant to the Back Unit.

And the Offering Plan stated that use of the Basement as a limited common element was specifically allotted to the Front Unit.

Who had the right to use the 1,190 square feet of cellar/basement space in the Condominium (the “Basement”)?

Act I: Continue reading


An upper floor unit in a luxury condominium was purchased in 2006.  A terrace was an included and important amenity.

A unit owner alleged that in 2010, water began leaking through the ceiling above a terrace door and that the leaks emanated from the exterior common elements.

The president  of the board of managers acknowledged that, in around 2011, the owner began to complain about water infiltration in the apartment.  The board retained an architect to conduct an inspection to the building’s façade and concluded that there may have been “some water leaks…at the time of inspection…from above window heads and at each side of window jambs”; but nevertheless concluded that the building had been diligently maintained.

Continue reading

When Making Rules, Boards Need to Know Their Limits

Copyright by, and republished with permission of, Habitat Magazine.

House rules and building regulations are usually the domain of co-op and condo boards. However, boards must make sure they don’t go off the rails in promulgating rules and fines that are either disproportionate to the targeted offenses or not expressly permitted by the co-op’s proprietary lease or the condo’s bylaws. Those governing documents form a contract, which can usually be amended only by the vote of a supermajority of shareholders or unit-owners – not by board decree. So while a board’s right to adopt rules and regulations is important, it is not unlimited. Rules and regulations typically contain provisions regarding objectionable or anti-social behavior, noise, the use of elevators, the use of public areas and the like. The board cannot, by enacting a rule or regulation, alter the basic terms of the contract that the owners entered into when they purchased their apartments.

Continue reading