Condo issues other than reserves.

8 Replies

Other than worrying about how much a condo association has in reserves, what other issues do I need to worry about? :groovy:

Originally posted by "Darryl":
Other than worrying about how much a condo association has in reserves, what other issues do I need to worry about? :groovy:

You should find out if there is any active or pending litigation against the HOA. In a lawsuit, the residents of a condo building, or SHAREHOLDERS, can be liable and sacked with a small or very large "special assessment"

I'd also watch out for any upcoming construction on the building, and any plans for construction around the building. It's always sad when a building is built right next to your amazing view. Ask around.

Thanks for the good advice. I never thought about the construction surrounding the building.

Don't forget that you need to worry about the Board of Directors. If you're in a condo complex with a bad board, you could be in for trouble. Remember, as a condo owner, you're a shareholder of the overall condo corporation. The board runs the show, and has both financial and legal responsibilities to you and your fellow condo owners.

Aside from the legalities as well as surrounding construction (which are very important), make sure that the condo culture suits you. Even if everything is running smoothly and you have an unobstructed view, living with a community you don't associate with on any level will definitely impede your living experience.

SPECIAL ASSESSMENTS!!! It is like holding a lit keg of dynamite. The fuse is ALREADY lit- just a matter of time before it blows up. Rich

The original post is 7 years old, but seeing how it's now been bumped, here is my take.

We have a couple of rental condos. They are nice upper scale units typically occupied by solid middle-class white-collar tenants (office workers). We will not invest in lower-income condominiums that resemble "The Projects". However, if you like dealing with drug addicts and gang members, have at it.

Secondly, learn the laws regarding condos in your state. Many of these HOA Boards are run by morons who love abusing the sliver of power they're bestowed, but they can be kept in check by 1) knowing your local statutes and 2) learning the by-laws for recalling them. Just the threat of them getting thrown off their little plastic throne is sometimes enough to bring them back down to Earth.

Mitch, good advice especially on #2. I have been through that process of removing officers. The by-laws may not address the issue entirely and you'll need to research statutes concerning the removal of corporate officers and directors.

Check their insurance coverage too.

Find out if the association in question has a hoa website. If they do go and read some of the latest minutes from board meetings, if possible, and see the items they are discussing. The minutes will give you lots of insight into a multitude of happenings such as finances, maintenance, delinquencies, etc... Short of that take a minute and introduce yourself to a couple of the homeowners, they will tell you more than you might want to know.

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