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START: February, 2013

FINISH:

STATUS: running

 

HFH Armenia runs a project to improve legislative and policy environment for the management of condominiums (multi-unit apartment buildings). The goal of the project is to improve implementation of housing rights in the collective housing sector with participation of civil society. The project aims to utilize positive examples of policy and legal environments in Visegrad Countries and Ukraine and develop a knowledge and advocacy platform to impact policy change in Armenia.

More than half of Armenians live in collective residential housing - condominiums (429,512 units), most of which were built in the Soviet era. The privatization of housing in the 90s was accompanied by dissolution of management and maintenance systems, and a sharp rise in utility costs, in the past decade, legal and policy frameworks were introduced to address the issue of management and maintenance of collective housing units. Their functioning of Law of condominium managements remains both limited in scope and largely ineffective.

At the same time tenants‘ have still low levels of self-organization through Home-owners Associations (HOA), which makes the possibility and incentives for improvement of the quality of living in condominiums very low.

Better tenant’s self-organization through HOA and improved legal implementation and policy frameworks are necessary to improve maintenance of buildings and quality of life in collective housing. A strong knowledge base on condominium management and a stronger civic-based platform need to be in place to push forward these legislative and policy improvements. The project seeks to utilize good practices from Hungary, Poland, Slovakia and Czech Republic - countries that inherited comparable situations in the 90s, and have in the past 20 years since made visible improvements in the living conditions in collective housing. In addition, the project will seek to utilize Ukrainian experience in terms of strengthening civic platforms for tenant’s self-organization – an important prerequisite for improved conditions in the collective building management.

The project has national and regional (international) research components, both of which will be used to create a knowledge sharing platform to instigate a strong civil society –led policy improvement on condominium legislation.

Lessons of civil society development in V4 countries via better governance of Home-owner Associations will lead to a better understanding of how HOAs could function more effectively in Armenia. Including 2 partners from Ukraine will add special synergies of regional cooperation both countries started to develop housing policies in similar conditions. Using this regional knowledge and understanding of housing policies in Armenia will lead to better civic involvement in governance structures.

This project will develop a knowledge-base and civil-society led policy initiative in Armenia as a way to improve the policy and legal implementation of the housing and condominium legislation in Armenia. This will lead to: a) Improved systems and practices of condominium management, b ) best practices of condominium management by HOA, and c) increased capital investment and government subsidy in buildings upgrade. These outcomes will lead to improved living conditions for the Armenians.

 

Project partners:

1) Institute of Sociology AS CR

2) Foundation Habitat for Humanity Poland

3) HFH International Hungary Nonprofit Kft

4) Housing Institute, civic organization

5) Lviv public organization "Center of local government studies"

6) All-Ukrainian Charitable Organization "Municipal Development Institute"

 

Project supporters:

Visegrad Fund

 

 

 

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