What majority for the renovation of facades in co-ownership?

AWhen, in a co-ownership, the balconies and their railings are private areas, can the owners of the latter be forced by the community to have them renovated at their own expense? This is the question which poses the following matter.

In 2007, a real estate company (SCI), owner of a large apartment, had the guardrails of its windows raised, after having obtained authorization from the general meeting. In 2015, this assembly decided to demolish the building.

It adopts resolutions which concern, on the one hand, the facades, and, on the other hand, the “bow windows, railings, shutters and casements” facades described. Work on facades and common areas must be financed by everyone, based on their co-ownership shares; work on private areas must be paid only by the co-owners who own them.

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In both cases, the meeting decides by a simple majority, known as “article 24”, i.e. the majority of the votes cast by the co-owners present or represented. The SCI, which refuses to pay again for the renovation of its guardrails, carried out eight years earlier, votes against the second resolution, but it is outvoted.

11,563 euros

She took legal action, arguing that a unanimous vote was necessary, in the case of private portions. She requests reimbursement of the sums (11,563 euros) that she had to pay for the intervention on her guardrails, an operation to which she moreover opposed, judging it ” useless “.

THE High Court de Paris la Déboute, on December 19, 2017. He judges that work which simultaneously affects common and private areas must “be executed as a whole, in order to respect the harmony of the facades, which must be homogeneous”. This harmony is provided for by the co-ownership regulations, which stipulate that“no development or decoration may be made to the exterior parts of the building, which would be likely to harm the harmony of the whole”.

The court specifies that the decision which concerns the common and private portions “must be taken by the majority required for the devastation, and not by the unanimity of all the co-owners”. The relevant devastation of the“maintenance and conservation” of the building, and not of its “”the required majority is indeed that of article 24.

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The Paris Court of Appeal, which the SCI has referred, confirms this judgment. She specifies that “the double majority required in the case of private portions is only necessary, under the terms of article 26 of the law of 1965, for certain works, and to impose on the co-owners a modification to the destination of their private portions or to the terms of their enjoyment”. However, the exterior renovation of the building does not fall into these last two categories, and the Court of Cassation approved it on March 9, 2023 (21-25.644).

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