Laws govering the operation of Management Committees

Questions about living in properties with shared/common facilities
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Luke
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Joined: 20 Aug 2008 13:19

Laws govering the operation of Management Committees

Post by Luke » 22 Aug 2008 17:39

Hi :-)

We bought our property, on a very large but pleasant complex, sixteen years ago... and because of sheer frustration I've finally fought my way onto the Management Committee (MC).

There are several long-standing MC members who have certain (commercial) vested interests in the way the complex is managed/maintained/developed and these are often at odds with the interests of the majority of owners.

Since these MC members in effect 'control' the Committee in terms of numbers - and arrange AGMs at a time of year when no-one is around, can someone please help me by clarifying the following:

1) What 'day-to-day' issues can the MC decide on its own and what issues must be referred to the AGM?

2) What are the minimum [and maximum] numbers of Committee members stipulated/permitted by law?

3) Do MC members, by law, have to be resident on the complex? [At the moment only 2 of us out of 8 are, although a few of the others are resident in other parts of Cyprus]

3) What notice period must be given [in writing] of an AGM?

4) Past Committees seem to think the AGM notifications etc. can simply be put in the pigeon holes of each block - or under the doors. However, most owners are non-resident on the complex (mostly Cypriots from e.g. Lefkosia or from overseas, together with a few other nationalities). Is the MC not legally bound to send communications to the owners' home addresses? Together with 'proxy' forms and detailed information on issues to be discussed at the AGM? [There are a number of critical issues under discussion at the moment, some of which I believe affect individual Title Deeds].

5) There are several owners late in paying Common Parts, but argue that because the invoices (like all other correspondence) are only put under the door, they never receive them. Some of the owners only visit Cyprus once every two years! Am I right in assuming the MC would only be able to take them to court for non-payment if it had sent the invoices to their permanent residences?

Sorry for so many questions but any advice would be gratefully received.!

Luke



Nigel Howarth
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Re: Laws govering the operation of Management Committees

Post by Nigel Howarth » 22 Aug 2008 19:50

Hi Luke - and welcome to the Cyprus Property Forum,

The 'Jointly Owned Buildings Law of 1993' will answer most of your questions regarding the duties, organisation and operation of Management Committees. You can download a copy (in English) from my main website - you'll find it at http://www.cyprus-property-buyers.com/f ... gs-law.pdf

As far as I am aware, there is no necessity for the members of the Committee to be permanently resident in the complex. But if the Committee is not running things in the way the owners wish, it is possible to change things if the majority of the owners so desire. What I suggest you do is contact the other owners and see if they are willing to let you act as their proxy at the AGM and other Committee meetings.

If people are late in paying their share of the common expenses, it is possible to lodge what is known as a 'memo' against the Title of their property for the recovery of the debt. Although this will not force them to pay immediately, it will prevent them from selling their property until the debt has been cleared. This will require a lawyer to petition the court and the property must be registered in the name of the defaulter (i.e. their name must appear on its Title Deed).

Can you explain a bit more what the critical issues are? - assuming they've been issued, there is no way that any decision of the Committee can affect the Title Deeds of the individual properties.

Regards,


Nigel Howarth
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Luke
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Re: Laws govering the operation of Management Committees

Post by Luke » 22 Aug 2008 20:49

:-)

Thank you Nigel.

One issue revolves around parking, and the MC's wish to negotiate a deal for an adjacent, re-developed, block to have 'absolute right of access' to specific spaces on our complex. Our current Title Deeds give each owner the right to park one vehicle on the complex (but there are no specifically-assigned spaces).

The available parking is already full-to-overflowing [especially in the summer] and demand has increased steadily over the years.

a) We cannot afford to 'lose' any places
and b) it seems any agreement - even with the 'approval' of the Land Registry - would infringe the rights of existing owners and their Title Deeds.

Another issue is the current 'unavailability' of common facilities that were specifically identified in both the Title Deeds and original 'General Agreements' of sale. [The MC refuses to accept responsibility for maintaining/operating these facilities].

I'd still appreciate your comments regarding: the notification period for an AGM; the addresses to which the MC is required, by law, to send communications; and the number of members permissible on an MC.

Cheers,
Luke



Luke
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Joined: 20 Aug 2008 13:19

Re: Laws govering the operation of Management Committees

Post by Luke » 23 Aug 2008 00:19

Sorry Nigel, I should have explained that I'm having problems downloading the 'Jointly Owned Buildings Law' using your link. It gets to 700KB or so, then freezes, so I can only read part of the preamble :-( I therefore don't know if the text answers my questions about the notice for the AGM etc.

Cheers
Luke



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Re: Laws govering the operation of Management Committees

Post by Nigel Howarth » 24 Aug 2008 13:12

Hi Luke,

Sorry to hear that you're having problems downloading - I've just tried it myself and it seems OK.

Re: Management Committee:-
  • They should produce a statement of accounts every 3 months for the joint owners.

    7 days notice is required to call a General Meeting (which are held annually).

    Notice of meeting to be posted in a conspicuous place.

    Quorum of 50% of owners (inc. proxies) need to attend before any business can be conducted.

    25% of owners (inc. proxies) can call for an extraordinary general meeting which the Management Committee must convene within 14 days. If they do not convene the meeting, then the owners who called the meeting may hold it.

    The numbers constituting the Management Committee is decided at its first meeting - the maximum number is 5. If more than 1, a treasurer is elected. If the number of members does not exceed 3, they must be owners of the units.
As far as I can tell, the Management Committee cannot refuse to look after a common area/facility (but there are some issues currently with other legislation concerning swimming pools).

I suggest that discuss the matter with a lawyer - as the legal interpretation of the law may be different to my interpretation. And I also suggest you try and get in touch with the other owners and get their support.

Regards,


Nigel Howarth
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emgee
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Re: Laws govering the operation of Management Committees

Post by emgee » 15 Jun 2009 21:12

Nigel

May a development open a Bank account when the owners are not in possession of their Title deeds?

Alan



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Re: Laws govering the operation of Management Committees

Post by Nigel Howarth » 15 Jun 2009 22:13

Hi Alan,

Do you mean a management committee?

As long as the committee's been registered, I can't see any reason why it shouldn't be able to open a bank account.

Regards,


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emgee
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Re: Laws govering the operation of Management Committees

Post by emgee » 15 Jun 2009 23:20

Dear Nigel

Thanks for your prompt reply.

The committee is not "legally" registered.

Regards

Alan



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Re: Laws govering the operation of Management Committees

Post by Nigel Howarth » 16 Jun 2009 10:38

Hi Alan,

I'm not sure whether you'll be able to open an account if the committee is not registered. I suggest you have a word with the bank to see what they can advise.

It would be a good idea to get the committee registered formally. I know that some people without their Title Deeds have managed to do this.

Cheers,


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marion
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Re: Laws govering the operation of Management Committees

Post by marion » 17 Jun 2009 14:21

We opened a bank account for our unregistered "committee" by showing the minutes of a general meeting. We have three signatories and two of the three must sign the cheques. ISTR that we had to get non-committee owners to pop into the bank and sign their agreement as well, but can't remember how many.

The bank called the account: Diahiristiki Epitropi ******* Complex which apparently means ******* Complex Management Committee.

HTH
Marion



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Re: Laws govering the operation of Management Committees

Post by Nigel Howarth » 17 Jun 2009 16:15

Thanks Marion,

I didn't appreciate that it was possible. Should make things easier for Alan.

(The bank account name seems very appropriate)

Cheers,


Nigel Howarth
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