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Taking ownership of multi-unit living

Irish Times
Taking ownership of multi-unit living - property ownership - Ireland

Owning an apartment comes with a host of responsibilities around managing the property. When owners fail to engage, disaster can result – but there is growing awareness of the need to be hands-on, writes JOANNE HUNT

WE ALL remember them. Boom-time billboards with glamorous couples clinking champagne flutes in their perfectly appointed kitchens – they were selling us not just a property, but a lifestyle.

Hulking above the heaving dual carriageway on a wet November evening, their slogans promised if you lived here, the living would be easy.

Stand-offs over service charges, rogue managing agents and anarchy at the agm – the potential pitfalls of living in a multi-unit development were never mentioned. And with the responsibility for their upkeep now resting squarely with owners, it doesn’t always make for easy living.

“Things just started to get very ugly,” says Ciara of a debacle among the residents of the northside development where she bought an apartment in 2003. She doesn’t want to be identified, because the debacle in question is ongoing. Two years ago, tensions over landscaping led the resident-run management company to abdicate, leaving a void until a new committee was formed.


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