Horizontal-Property Act Law & Legal Definition


Horizontal Property Act is a statute dealing with cooperatives and condominiums. Each state has specific laws on horizontal property.

For example, in Virginia, according to Va. Code Ann. § 55-79.3 whenever a developer, the sole owner or the co-owners of a building or buildings expressly declare, through the recordation of a master deed or lease, their desire to submit their property to the regime, there shall be thereby established a horizontal property regime. Further, once the property is submitted to the horizontal property regime, an apartment in the building or buildings may be individually conveyed and encumbered and may be the subject of ownership, possession or sale and of all types of juridic acts inter vivos or mortis causa, as if it were sole and entirely independent of the other apartments in the building or buildings of which they form a part, and the corresponding individual titles and interests shall be recordable. A garage unit sold to a co-owner as a limited common element may be sold or transferred by him to another co-owner in the same regime independently of and separately from his apartment.[Va. Code Ann. § 55-79.4]

In South Carolina, Apartments, for horizontal property purposes, are defined in S.C. Code Ann. § 27-31-20(a) as a part of the property intended for any type of independent use including one or more rooms or enclosed spaces. Each co-owner, or owner of an apartment in a horizontal property regime, acquires condominium ownership, and owns his or her individual apartment, and has a common right to share, with other co-owners, in the common areas of the property.[ Queen's Grant II Horizontal Prop. Regime v. Greenwood Dev. Corp., 368 S.C. 342, 628 S.E.2d 902, 2006 S.C. App. LEXIS 79 (S.C. Ct. App. 2006).]