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Rental Glossary - C

Condo / Condominium

A building consisting of many living units, each owned or rented by individuals. The common areas of the building, such as the parking lot, are jointly owned by the unit owners. A condominium also refers to the specific living unit within the building.

See Rental Unit.
See the article on Montreal Condos.

Constructive Eviction

When unlivable conditions, due to neglect or actions by the landlord, force a tenant out of their rental unit, the tenant has been constructively evicted. Examples of constructive eviction are failure to provide heat, water or electricity.

When a tenant is constructively evicted, he/she is legally allowed to stop paying rent. To do this, the tenant must give notice to the landlord of the uninhabitable conditions and move out. Because actions such as these involve the Quebec lease law, it is advisable to contact the Regie du Logement about claiming constructive eviction.

Not all constructive eviction claims are granted, especially if the Regie du Logement decides conditions are not dire enough to warrant one. As a result, the tenant may be subjected to penalties for breaking the lease.

See Uninhabitable.
See also this article on Quebec rental leases.

Co-op

A housing community that is jointly owned and managed by the tenants who live there. Each co-op member buys shares in the housing community, attends regular meetings to discuss maintenance and other community matters, and helps run the co-op. Members can participate in specific committees or be on the board.

Capital Improvement

A long-term plan, usually four to six years, that details major physical development or redevelopment that extends the life of the property. These enhancements can include upgrading the elevators, replacement of the roof, and renovations of the lobby.

Whether an improvement is considered capital is important because of cost. How an improvement is classified has an effect on property taxes.

Common Area Maintenance

The amount of additional rent charged to the tenant, on top of the base rent, to operate, manage, equip, light, repair, and maintain the common areas of the property shared by all the tenants. The maintenance can include snow removal, outdoor lighting, insurance, and property taxes.

Most often, these Common Area Maintenance services do not include any capital improvements that are made to the property.

See Capital Improvement.

Capital Lease

A lease that contains one or more of the following criteria:

  • the term is greater than 75% of the estimated economic life of the property.
  • has an option to purchase the property for less than fair market value.
  • ownership of the property is transferred to the tenant at the end of the lease.
  • the current value of the lease payments is more than 90% of the fair market value of the property.

See Lease.

Cancellation Clause

A clause in a rental lease that confers the ability to terminate the party's obligations. The grounds and ability to cancel are usually specified in the lease.

Condotel

A condominium project that operates like a hotel, with a registration desk, cleaning service and more. Each condotel unit is individually owned, and owners have the option of placing their unit in the condotel's rental program, where it is rented out like a hotel room.

The advantages of condotel ownership include rental income to offset ownership expenses, a great and well-maintained vacation home and potential price appreciation.

However, owners might have to make a reservation for their own condotel unit several days or weeks in advance. There are also risks associated with hotel ownership such as the potential destruction of the property by tenants.

See Condo / Condominium.