Can I fix my condo’s roof if the HOA won’t?

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Can I fix my condo’s roof if the HOA won’t?

I live in a condo. The HOA is responsible for outside maintenance on the buildings. The condos here have mansard roofs and the shingles are 40 year old cedar shingles. They are pretty rotten to the point that squirrels are chewing holes through the shingles. Do I have the right to go ahead and replace the mansard roof shingles, since they apparently have no plans to fix them in the near future?

Asked on July 9, 2019 under Real Estate Law, Kentucky

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

No, you do not have the right to do this, unfortunately. You don't own the roof of the condo--you only own the interior of your unit. The HOA owns the exterior; you have no legal right to perform repairs or other work on someone else's property. You can OFFER to do this for them, and if they allow you (get their consent in writing) it would be legal, but you can't do it against their will.
If you suffer any damage to your unit or possessions (e.g. due to water infilitration from a rotten or squirrel-chewed roof) after you have warned them of the issue, they would be liable for the cost(s) (e.g. to repair damage; to replace belongings) you incur due to their failure to maintain the roof, since it is negligent, or careless, to not address issues of which you have been warned or made aware.


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