Who should fixa balcony leak – theHOA or the condo owner?

UPDATED: Apr 7, 2011

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Apr 7, 2011Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Who should fixa balcony leak – theHOA or the condo owner?

I have a 2nd floor condo with balcony and there’s heavy rain this spring. About 1 month agoI received a letter from the HOA stating the water damage for the downstairs unit should be my responsibility to fix. I checked my balcony and there are small cement cracks underneaththe balcony bar and along the seam at the bottom. The CC&R states that owner should maintain the interior of exclusive used common area. I think that the cement crack underneath the bar (it’s close to the edge of the balcony) should fixed by HOA rather than me, since it’s not on the interior of the balcony therefore beyond the normal maintenace for owners. Meanwhile,  the HOA should inspect all buildings routinely. If they did their job then they should have been made aware of the problem and sent notice to me to fix it if it’s indeed my responsibility. In the meantime, I think the water proof layer inside the balcony has problem, otherwiseit shouldn’t have damaged the upstairs so badly because of the small crack at the seam.

Asked on April 7, 2011 under Real Estate Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

There's no way for someone to answer this in the abstract, since it depends on two things:

1) The specific language of the  agreement(s) controlling responsibility for repairs; and 

2) The factual situation--i.e. exactly where the leak is, what a reasonable person might conclude about it's location vis-a-vis the "interior" of an exclusively used common area, etc.

It seems like there is, from what you write, at least room for disagreement. For an evaluation of the merits of your case, you'd have to bring photos of the area and damage, the agreement, etc. to an attorney who can review them for you. Of course, depending on the cost of the repair, vs. the cost of the lawyer, it may make more sense to simply pay--but that's an economic, not legal, decision.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption