Ministry of the Interior Plans Consumer Protection Reforms for New Housing Developments

On February 29, 2024, Minister of the Interior Lin Yu-chang (林右昌) previewed plans to lower public utility ratios in apartment buildings by 5-10%. To achieve this goal, the Ministry plans to reclassify parking-related facilities and limit floor space allocated to building management committees.  These changes are intended to maximize the floor space of condominium units in the building.
In a typical new housing development in Taiwan, the public utility ratio refers to the proportion of shared or common areas for ancillary structures within an apartment complex relative to the total area of the property. The higher the public utility ratio, the less living space residents have in their condominiums. Currently, a typical housing development has a public utility ratio of 30 to 35% and is the source of many complaints by new home buyers.
Parking Facilities
According to Lin, current regulations classify statutory parking spaces as shared property. Moreover, some developers register access lanes to the typically underground parking garage as public utility space. This results in an unfair burden on those who do not purchase parking spaces because they must share the cost of statutory parking spaces and access lanes that they do not use.
The ministry is proposing to reclassify statutory parking spaces as "special purpose property."  Statutory parking spaces are the minimum number of parking spaces required by law for a particular building or development. Independent property deeds will be issued for statutory parking spaces but can only be distributed among the unit owners. As a result, those who do not purchase a statutory parking space will not be responsible for the costs of statutory parking spaces. These changes will be made by amending provisions of the Condominium Administration Act (公寓大廈管理條例) and will require approval by not only the Executive Yuan, but also the Legislature.
Space for Management Committee
Under Taiwan law, the floor area ratio is the proportional relationship between the total building floor area and the size of the land upon which the building is constructed.

To further reduced unused space, the Ministry is now proposing to amend the Building Technical Regulations (建築技術規則) to exclude elevators from floor area ratio calculations. The ministry also aims to limit the floor area that a developer can allocate for use by the building management to 1% of the total floor area. In addition, floor space for use by the committee will be capped at 100 square meters with a minimum of 20 square meters. The changes to the Building Technical Regulations need to be approved by the Executive Yuan to take effect.
The proposed changes to the Act and the Regulations are expected to reduce public utility ratios by a total of 5-10%. The Ministry envisions that this will bring housing projects with 25-30% public utility ratios onto the market, thereby giving homebuyers more options.   
The ministry has had initial discussions with developers and will have more in-depth discussions including stakeholders such as local governments, members of the public, and consumer protection groups in the coming months. Once the discussions have been completed, the ministry will send the proposals to the Executive Yuan for further deliberation.
Previous Back to list Next