One can distinguish between vertical and horizontal ownership based on the distribution of property ownership. Vertical property is understood to be properties made up of several premises or homes that belong to a single property. On the contrary, the horizontal property law indicates that horizontal property is understood to be the form of co-ownership that exists between the different owners of a property divided into several floors.

The law of horizontal property and its rights

The horizontal property law includes the different rights that owners have over the property. Distinguish between:

The right of singular property

The singular and exclusive property right refers to the rights that each owner has over the elements of his exclusive property, such as the apartment itself, the parking space, or the storage rooms.

The right of joint property 

On the other hand, joint and inseparable property rights refer to the common elements of the property. They can be the staircase, the mailboxes, the community pool, or the elevator.

Horizontal property distribution

The horizontal property law works more or less like a company’s shares. All elements of the exclusive property, such as the apartment or the parking space, are assigned a percentage share of the total building. This percentage indicates the obligations that each of the owners will have over the common areas based on their total participation. In this way, both the contribution of each owner to the everyday expenses and the voting power in the owners’ meetings are established.

According to the horizontal property law, the property manager is in charge of carrying out all administrative functions, such as accounting, budgeting, and preparing the annual balance of expenses.

The vertical property

Unlike horizontal property, which is characterized by co-ownership, vertical property has a single owner to whom all the homes or premises belong. Usually, the owner makes the investment profitable by leasing the premises in different forms.

This does not mean that every vertical property has to be destined to obtain economic returns. A plot in an urbanization, for example, is not governed by the horizontal property law. The buyer of a villa, as the owner, must be responsible for the maintenance and tax obligations since they own 100% of the property.

Horizontal Ownership vs. Vertical Ownership

In vertical ownership, there is no differentiation between common areas and exclusive areas of each owner since there is only one owner.

Unlike in horizontal property law, where the property manager is responsible for administrative and maintenance tasks, in vertical property, the owner is in charge of maintaining the property’s condition and fulfilling financial obligations.

In a horizontal community, properties or premises are usually used primarily for housing. In contrast, vertical properties, such as museums, hotels, or shopping centers, are used for commercial, professional, recreational, or cultural purposes.

Additionally, property rights are essential to real estate transactions. Clear and enforceable property rights facilitate the buying, selling, and leasing of property, ensuring that all parties understand their rights and obligations. This clarity reduces disputes and fosters a stable property market.

In the context of land use, property rights are essential for urban planning and development. They provide a framework for balancing private ownership with the public interest, such as zoning laws and environmental regulations. By protecting individual property rights while accommodating community needs, societies can promote sustainable and equitable development.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *