Protecting the rights of Purchasers in Condominium Properties in Sri Lanka: A Comparative Analysis with United States of America
This research is to identify rights and issues of condominium property purchasers in Sri Lanka and to suggest recommendations to make its condominium property sector more friendly towards the Purchasers. Condominium property can be defined as a building subdivided into separate units which are built on a single land. Therefore, in condominium property, there is an Apartment building which each Apartment is owned separately by the people living in it, but also containing shared areas such as elevators, swimming pools or the community garden, allocated for common purposes. Concept of condominium living was introduced to the Sri Lanka in 1950s and still novel to the society. During the last 2 decades, Condominium living attracted most of Sri Lankan urban population. However, in comparison to protection provided for condominium property developers and other related stakeholders, Sri Lankan condominium law become detrimental to protection of the interests of purchasers in pre-sale condominiums. In Contrast, in the United States of America, condominium properties largely utilize as a mean to solve the housing problems and introduce numerous legal safeguards to protect the rights and interests of condominium property purchasers. Hence, this research will comparatively analyze the legal framework pertaining to condominium properties in Sri Lanka with USA, in order to propose reforms for Sri Lanka to make its condominium property sector more friendly towards the Purchasers. The main research objective of this research is to identify rights and issues of purchasers of condominium properties in Sri Lanka and to see whether we can get benefit from the developments of the USA. Research methodology of this legal research is mainly a qualitative approach and therefore doctrinal research method was employed. In order to provide more insightful recommendations, findings from the ideas of condominium property developers, purchasers, Officials of the Condominium Management Authority, Officials of Condominium Management Corporations, legal professionals and professionals working in the industry have been taken into account. Research identified that Sri Lanka has failed to tackle modern-day deceptive selling practices by unscrupulous developers towards the purchasers. Therefore, this research recommends to Condominium Management Authority (CMA) and the government to implement timely policies and actions to equip the CMA with necessary powers and resources to regulate the industry and minimize the shortcomings.