Property – Multiple Ownership of Apartment Buildings – Establishment of Horizontal Property Regimes

The states of Arkansas and Hawaii have enacted legislation allowing the owner of a building, upon recordation of a master deed, to establish that building as a horizontal property regime, thereby permitting the owner to convey individual apartments in the building as if each were entirely independent of the remainder of the building. The purchaser of one of these apartments is constituted a “co-owner” and may record his deed. Each co-owner has an exclusive right to possession of his apartment and a right to a share, with the other co-owners, in those parts of the building that the statutes designate as “common elements.” The administration of the building is to be governed by the by-laws adopted by a council of co-owners. The expense of administration and of maintenance and repair of the common elements is to be borne by the co-owners equally under the Hawaii Act, but pro-rata according to the value of the co-owner’s apartment in relation to the value of the whole building under the Arkansas Act. Ark. Acts 1961, No. 60; Hawaii Sess. Laws, Reg. Sess. 1961, at 267.