Who Pays for Unit Repairs

January 2024

When unit repairs are necessary in a condominium corporation, a single question always arises.  Who pays?

Heating, ventilation, water and other building systems have corporation and unit components.  Owners are typically responsible for maintaining the unit component.  This can extend to cleaning vents and lint traps, replacing filters, dealing with water leaks and caulking windows.  All of this falls under general maintenance obligations of the owner.  The corporation would be responsible for building systems until the point they enter a unit.  For other situations, the answer to this question is not always simple and depends on the situation.

The corporation is responsible for repairs arising from its negligence.

When undertaking common area repairs, unit access may be necessary.  The access wall to a leaking pipe may be in a unit.  A corporation having to break through a wall to access the pipe would be required to return the unit to its original construction.

When common area mechanical equipment is updated, it may no longer be compatible with in-suite mechanical equipment.  Replacing or upgrading in-suite mechanical equipment may not be a corporation responsibility.

When a question arises about who is responsible, the answer can usually be found in the declaration.