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Hot to perform apartment alternation in Kiev

Legalization of apartment alternations is a necessity rather than simply fulfillment of the legislation requirements. Illegal alternations are considered to be a voluntary construction that may result not only in fines but for example in inability to dispose of the apartment. We prepared a legal advice on some aspects of alternations legalization.

The thing is that Subsection 63 of the Instruction on procedure of conduction of notarization actions by notaries in Ukraine provides that a notary who notarizes disposal of apartment must request an extract from the Register of real estate ownership rights. In accordance with Subsection 7.6 of the temporary regulations on procedure of state registration of rights to real estate issuance of the extract follows after the technical inventory of an apartment. And if during such inventory the Bureau of Technical Inventory detects voluntary construction and includes information about it in the extract then a notary will be obligated to request permission of local council for alternations. If such permission is not granted he will deny notarization of agreement under which the apartment is planned to be disposed of.

But obtainment of such permission in accordance with regulations set by current legislation of Ukraine is quite a difficult task.

Article 152 of the Housing Code of Ukraine provides that apartment alternations are performed based on permission of executive committee of a local council. Subsection 1.4.5 of the Regulations on management of residential buildings and adjacent territories provides that in order to obtain such permission an owner or renter (with owner’s consent) is required to file an application for such permission. It usually goes along with copy of ownership certificate or premise rental agreement, copy floors’ schemes, project of alternations and consent of owners, co-owners (renters) for alternations of premises that are jointly owned.

However the particular list of documents which are required to obtain the consent as well as procedure of these documents submission, fees and terms of permissions issuance are set by local councils. In Kiev for example the procedure issuance of apartment alternations permission is approved by the Order of the Main Department of urban planning, architecture and design of urban environment number 59 dated 30.01.2010. This document provides that in order to obtain the permission it is required to provide:

  • Documents which prove title (ownership certificate, rental agreement, etc.) that are registered by the Bureau of Technical Inventory of Kiev and their notarized copies;
  • Real estate ownership certificate (housing office or condominium) about absence of rent debts;
  • Consents of all joint owners and those persons of legal age that live in an apartment;
  • Certificate from 3 (about members of family);
  • Copy of technical specifications certificate from the Bureau of technical Inventory;
  • Consent of real estate owner;
  • Photo of façade (in order to build a balcony of console type);
  • Consents of all neighbors from above and below and for those living on the ground floor – consents of neighbors from left and right;
  • Pre-project proposals;
  • Expert conclusion of “Center of urban planning and architecture” about possibility of implementation of pre-project proposals related to apartment alternations.

In order to collect all these documents one will spend many months, significant amount of money for development of project. It will be required to wait in endless lines and make unofficial payments for obtainment of certificates and conclusions, to spend time persuading judges to make certain decision. At the same time in some cases (for example when judges refuse to make certain decision) collection of these documents may be stopped.

But if you manage to do the impossible and collect the documents then you will have to wait for another month or one and a half month in order to obtain the permission. For example in Kiev there exist three stages of examination that last since the moment of documents submission until the moment of permission issuance which takes up to 27 business days.

However alternations related problems can be solved much faster if one knows the weaknesses. One of such weaknesses is list of works for alternations which in accordance with Subsection 3.2 of the Instruction on procedure of conduction of technical inventory of real estate objects are not considered to be voluntary construction. Conduction of one of these works does not let the Bureau of Technical Inventory to include information about voluntary construction in the extract and therefore it is not required to obtain the permission for alternations. However it is possible that you will have to prove legality of your actions in court.

Besides alternations can be legalized in court. In this case it is not required to undergo bureaucratic procedures. But at the same time as pointed out by the generalization of the Kiev court of appeal dated 01.01.2010 it is required to provide: technical conclusion about compliance of completed works with construction provisions and regulations, conclusion about compliance of alternations with sanitary and epidemiologic requirements and rules of fire safety (and if required conclusions of other services).

It is also possible to legalize apartment alternations by means of obtainment of permission from local council but the procedure will be very bureaucratic and even more unacceptable since it additionally requires payment of fine.

The material was prepared by law firm “Pravova Dopomoga”.

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