- Cadastre : Cadastral plan
Definition : Cadastre - Cadastral plan
Public document prepared by a land surveyor showing graphically on a plan a lot in relation with the other surrounding lots (common portion(s) and private portions). Filed at the Québec Land Register, its object is, without limitation to:
- Identify each lot with a distinct number;
- Indicate the measurements and the superficial area of each private portion.
The cadastral plan is presumed to be accurate. A copy of this plan must be filed at the register of co-ownership and be kept at the disposal of any co-owner requesting it.
WARNING! The cadastral plan should not be confused with the certificate of location, which is a private document, also prepared by a land surveyor, but on behalf of the owner of an immovable.
Most buyers attach great importance to an apartment area/price ratio. Therefore, before signing the deed of sale, take time to carefully measure the area of your unit. Discrepancies between what is shown on the plan provided at the signing of the preliminary contract, versus the actual area shown on the cadastral plan or the certificate of location are frequent. This difference can be explained by many factors listed in the factsheet entitled The Area of the Private Portion.
Any co-owner may have the relative value of their fraction, as well as the allocation of common expenses, revised according to certain conditions and formalities. To do so, it is necessary to proceed with an appeal to revise the relative value of the fractions. Furthermore, a co-owner may wish to modify the relative value of their fraction. Therefore, they will have to request the prior consent of the Board of directors or the general meeting of co-owners, depending on what is required.
This revision or modification of the relative value has an impact on the proportionate share of the right of ownership (which the co-owners hold in the common portions), the number of votes they can cast at the meeting of co-owners and the allocation of common expenses. On this question, Article 1064 of the Civil Code of Québec stipulates that: “Each co-owner contributes to the common expenses in proportion to the relative value of his fraction.”
Whether you are a real estate developer (for a new building) or several owners of an existing building who wish to convert it, the rules for subjecting a building to divided co-ownership are the same. The creation of a divided co-ownership is necessary when an immovable must be divided into lots composed of a private portion and a share of the common portions, and which belong to one or more different persons. The community of co-owners acquires the status of legal person from the day a declaration of co-ownership is published at the Land registry office (Land Register). The legal person thus constituted takes the name of “syndicate of co-owners”. Its mission is to ensure the " preservation of the immovable, the maintenance and administration of the common portions, the protection of the rights appurtenant to the immovable or the co-ownership, as well as all business in the common interest ". To form this co-ownership several steps involving many protagonists are necessary.
The law provides that a syndicate must keep a register at the disposal of the co-owners. Article 342 of the Civil Code of Quebec specifies that the board of directors keeps the list of members and the books and registers necessary for the proper functioning of the legal person. This register is the memory of the syndicate, and consequently, its archives. In is thus invaluable. Much more than a mere witness of the sound management of an immovable, it is its prime instrument. Therefore, preservation and access are the hallmarks of this register.
Parking spaces qualified as private portions are commonplace in divided co-ownership. This special legal status is attributed to them by the declaration of co-ownership, which designates them as fractions in the section devoted to the description of the fractions. Like an apartment held in co-ownership, all these spaces have a unique lot number, along with a relative value, and a share. Their owners may, at a general meeting of co-owners, prevail themselves of the votes attached thereto. These votes are added, as the case may be, to those they have for their apartment
Section 1719 of the Civil code of Québec states that the seller must provide the buyer with a copy of the deed of purchase, as well as with a copy of the owner history and of the certificate of location he has on hand. Prepared by a land surveyor, the certificate of location is part of the property titles the seller must supply.
In the interest of the buyer, the certificate of location should clearly describe the current condition of all private portions (for instance, an apartment, a parking or storage space, or even land). Should the seller not have a certificate of location on hand (and unless the promise to purchase states otherwise), they will need to have one prepared, at their own expense.
As in common portions, work can be carried out in common portions for restricted use, such as building a terrace upon which a co-owner would have exclusive use or transforming a balcony into an additional room attached to an apartment. If such cases, the co-owners must keep in mind that article 1063 of the Civil Code of Québec governs the use they can make of the common portions for restricted use. This article stipulates that: "Each co-owner has the disposal of his fraction; he has free use and enjoyment of his private portion and the common portions, provided he complies with the by-laws of the immovable and does not impair the rights of the other co-owners or the destination of the immovable. "
An obligation exists for the seller, namely that of announcing the exact size of the unit he is selling. Most buyers attach great importance to the area/price ratio of an apartment, as this is a data that will greatly influence the price offered or their decision to buy or not. Therefore, before signing the deed of sale, take the time to carefully check the area of the unit. Discrepancies between what is shown on the plan provided at the signing of the preliminary contract, versus the actual area shown on the cadastral plan or the certificate of location are not isolated cases. However, this problem of surface areas is a source of frequent conflicts in co-ownership. And it's not exclusive to off-plan sales. It can also occur during a resale.