Strata Parking Stalls and Storage Lockers
Parking stalls and storage areas may be allocated in different ways. It is important that as an owner or tenant you are aware of the allocation method as it may affect your specific rights to use parking stalls or storage areas in a strata corporation.
Strata corporations must keep a list of owners, with their parking stall and storage locker numbers, up to date. In new strata developments, the owner developer must provide this information to the strata corporation at the first annual general meeting. In addition, disclosure relating to parking and storage areas is required in the "Form B: Information Certificate".
Not all parking stalls or storage areas in strata developments are allocated in the same way. The specific rights of owners or tenants to use parking stalls or storage areas vary depending on how the use was allocated in the development.
Examining the development's strata plan will help determine whether parking stalls and storage areas are designated as a separate strata lot or part of a strata lot, limited common property or common property.
Designation of parking stalls and storage areas will usually follow one of the following allocation methods:
1. Separate or Part of the Strata Lot
Commercial use of parking and storage areas can be designated as a separate strata lot, in which case, they will have their own strata lot number. This is not allowed in residential strata plans.
If parking and storage areas are intended to be used in conjunction with a residential strata lot they must be included as part of the strata lot and so share the same strata lot number as the residential unit.
2. Limited Common Property (LCP)
Often, parking and storage areas are designated on the strata plan as limited common property (LCP) in connection with a particular strata lot for exclusive use. An owner who is entitled to the exclusive use of a LCP parking or storage area does not own the area, but has exclusive right to use it.
LCP areas are still common property, which is owned by all of the owners in the strata corporation in proportion to their respective unit entitlements. If parking and storage areas are designated on the strata plan as common property and are not limited to the use of a specific strata lot, a strata corporation can create LCP designations of these areas by passing a resolution either by an unanimous vote or a 3/4 vote at an annual or special general meeting. A more detailed discussion on Limited Common Property and Short Term Exclusive Use of Common Property can be found in the Understanding Stratas section.
The right to exclusive use of an LCP area attaches to the strata lot and not to the individual owner. Therefore, when an owner sells his or her strata lot, the right to exclusive use of the LCP area will usually transfer to the new owner of the strata lot.
3. Common Property
Parking and storage areas may simply be designated on the strata plan as common property. Common property is owned by all of the owners in a strata corporation in proportion to their respective unit entitlements. However, the use of areas designated as common property can be allocated to owners in three different ways.
(I) A Grant of Exclusive Use: A strata corporation may give an owner exclusive privilege to use parking and storage areas that are designated as common property under a short term exclusive use agreement or privilege. This agreement or privilege may not be given for a term that exceeds one year and may be subject to conditions.
The strata corporation can renew the term of the privilege, alter the conditions, and cancel in the middle of a term by giving reasonable notice to the owner. Permission to exclusively use common property is temporary in nature and is not as secure as a right to use common property under an LCP designation or a lease.
An important element of short term exclusive use arrangements is that the ability to use the common property only attaches to the owner and not the strata lot.
Vendors cannot contractually assign their permission to use parking or storage areas to new owners, as with a lease. The new owner must ask the strata corporation for permission to use the area exclusively. The strata corporation has full discretion to grant the exclusive use of the same or a different parking or storage area, or even to deny the new owner the right to use any parking or storage area.
(II) An Assignment of Rights Under a Lease or Licence: When a developer creates a strata development, the developer will sometimes grant a lease or license over parking or storage areas to a related company or to itself (a head lease). The developer or related company will then assign its lease or license interest in individual parking or storage areas to purchasers when they buy their strata lot. Usually head leases or licenses of common property are created in developments with large underground parking and storage areas to enable the developer to control which purchasers get which parking and storage areas after the strata plan is filed.
(III) Common Use of Parking Spaces: Sometimes a strata plan will contain a parking area designated as common property that is not allocated to the use of any specific owners. Owners can often use common property parking areas on a first-come first-served basis.
However, there may also be strata corporation bylaws or rules that govern how owners may use the parking area, such as not storing furniture.
Strata Property Act: Sections 20, 35, 59, 66, 68, 71-77, 257, 258
Regulations: Section 13.6
The information on this website about strata housing is provided for the user’s convenience as a basic starting point; it is not a substitute for getting legal advice. Learn more about the site’s purpose and limits. The content on this website is periodically reviewed and updated by the Province of British Columbia as per the date noted on each page: February 2015.