Condo Owners & Balcony Bylaws

Toronto’s high-rise residences are growing by the day – one of the only ways to have a piece of outdoor living is to have a balcony.

However, balconies can be a bit complicated when you’re looking to add decor, plants, furniture or any sort of appliance.

Here are a few important things to consider:

BBQ’s:

Nothing says summer like a barbecue gettogether! However, most often barbeques are illegal on balconies. Some residents are lucky to have a gas line built-in for a combustible model, while others may not be able to have a grill at all. Not only can propane present a huge fire, smoke, and smell hazard concern for neighbours, but there are also laws that specify how propane tanks can only be moved if a list of criteria is met. It’s also against the law to take them up main elevators!

Cement & Greenery:

Cold, grey stone isn’t exactly inviting, and although tiles and turf designed for outdoors may add warmth to an outdoor space, you will have to check with your condo’s board. A lot of condos have banned these additions due to fire risks from flying cigarette butts. Some buildings have even banned area rugs!

As for your green thumb, you may need to go easy. Although the majority of condos will allow plants, you will need to be mindful of the height and placement, also due to fire hazards. There may also be weight restrictions for large, dirt-filled planters and tall arrangements. Ceiling planters are almost never allowed, so container planting is usually the way to go!

Storage: 

A big complaint amongst downtown Toronto condos and management is the inability to keep bikes on balconies due to the dirt they track in through the unit. There is also a known issue with large stored items on balconies such as cardboard boxes, plastic bins, and shelving. Ensure you know the rules before counting on storing your items outside!

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