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Getting a Condo in Brazil Is Buying into a New Lifestyle

A swimming pool inside a Brazilian condo

A swimming pool inside a Brazilian condo So, you've finally decided to go ahead and buy that nice flat in Brazil. As the proud owner of the apartment you will also become an owner/member of the condominium association and the owner of a proportional fraction of the common areas and the land on which the building(s) is located.

You will acquire rights as well as responsibilities. In order to fully enjoy your property and to be able to "stand your ground" in case of virtually inevitable misunderstandings and conflicts with your neighbors and the condo administration, it is important to understand the basics of the Brazilian Condominium Law and the logistics behind condominium inner-workings.

Condominium is usually established by the act of the incorporation by the initial unit owners and involves, amongst standard registration procedures establishment of the Convenção de Condomí­nio (Declaration of Condominium).

Convenção de Condomí­nio is the most important legal document that (within the Lei do Condomí­nio) guides and regulates how particular condominium association is run and administered.

Convenção de Condomí­nio is usually inaugurated after the construction phase is over and the developer hands over control of the property to the unit owners. It is not uncommon to use standard Convenção de Condomí­nio offered by the developer as the basis for the Declaration of Condominium.

It is highly recommended that you or your agent obtain a copy of the Convenção de Condomí­nio for the property you intend on purchasing as soon as you start to seriously consider making an offer. A copy of the Convenção de Condomí­nio can be requested from the property owner, property administration company that runs the condominium, or the condo executive administrator – the sí­ndico.

It is often said that buying a condo unit is equivalent of buying a lifestyle. It means that you will find an already established way of administering the common property, implementing its security and maintenance procedures as well as other rules and regulations of using the playground, the garage, the pool, and any other common areas.

Familiarity with the Declaration of Condominium, meeting the building administrator, and having some heart-to-heart chats with the other condo owners and the company that is administering the condo association you are planning to join might spell the difference between full and practical enjoyment of your property vs. having some unpleasant surprises that thwart your plans on using and enjoying your new possession.

Convenção de Condomí­nio is not written in stone. It can be altered by a majority vote at an assembly specifically called for the modification or alteration of the document. Quorum requirements can be established by the very Convenção de Condomí­nio or guided by the Lei do Condomí­nio.

Boris Goldshmit is the founder of the Lifestyles Brazil Web Portal, a licensed Real Estate Broker, and a Residential General Contractor. He can be contacted at: +55 21 2255-6068, +55 21 9149-6856 and boris@lifestylesbrazil.com.

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  • Show Comments (6)

  • Boris

    Sindico is always an individual
    Hello bienchido,

    Sorry to hear about your bad experiences. To clarify the situation, sindico is always an individual person. This person can be a unit owner of the condominio or it can be a professional hired by the condo association, but it is never a group administrative post.

  • Doggy Daddy

    The Inferno Whistle
    Indeed… and you have to pay this guy to buzz around and announce to the robbers that he is 2 or 3 streets away and his return will be about 15- 20 minutes. Just enough time to have the vagabundos climb over the wall and break in your home. This is the most stupid security system in the world. I got myself a trained Rottwelier so there is a deadly suprise in my garden if any dares to enter. Don’t forget the Brazilians claim they invented the TOOTHPICK. Indeed laddie!!

  • Ric

    What the whistle is meant to do
    Is inform the potential perps that the guard is coming so they he will not surprise them and risk getting himself hurt. IÀ‚´ve seen this novela more than once.

  • Forrest Allen Brown

    you buy they tell you how to live
    Ask bill what he thinks about the condo board out of 245 units only about 12% pay for water , so if something breaks no water , board does not have the money or time to repair it .

    the guard is only there during the day and at night a man on a bicycle rides by and blows his horn to make sure you never get a good night sleep .

    and trash is just droped outside the door

  • ch.c.

    To bienchido !
    Thank you for your confirmation that racism exist…in Brazil, just by the color of the skin.
    A fact that most Brazilians dont even recognize, especially the many junkies on this forum!!!!

  • bienchido

    The Condo Board (sindico) can make your life hell if you buy a condo in a building whose residents don’t like your lifestyle. The sindico in my last building was a bunch of old ladies who sat in the lobby all day long and watched everyone’s every move. We have a lot of pardo, moreno and black friends, and these white “bruxas” assumed we were all drug dealers, prostitutes and theives simply based on the color of the skin of our guests. After about a year we had to move out because we couldn’t stand the meddling, racism and spying.

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