July 12, 2024

If you don’t like the idea of taking care of a yard or being separated from your neighbors by that yard, then you already have two reasons to look into buying a condo instead of a house. You can likely think of several other reasons on your own, but before you sign paperwork to complete your purchase of a condo, do yourself a favor and reach out to Tully Rinckey law to learn more about common legal issues to think about when purchasing a condo.

Get To Know the Board Members

The condo association’s board members will hold a lot of sway in how you feel about your condo and building, and you need to know their professional backgrounds. Doing so goes a long way in providing you with peace of mind, so familiarize yourself with the decisions board members made in the past and why.

Learn the Bylaws and Declarations Inside and Out

How the building grounds are maintained, the description of available units, how condo association fees are used and leasing arrangements are all found in the condo bylaws and declarations. Carefully and thoroughly read over the bylaws and declarations, and don’t hesitate to ask a legal professional like Tully Rinckey or board members about anything that you don’t understand. You don’t want to think a bylaw means one thing while in actuality it means something completely different. Do what you can to sidestep and avoidable disaster.

Ask About Litigation

As you’re learning more about condo association board members, don’t be afraid to inquire about past legal issues the board may have come up against. If litigation has cropped up in the past, find out why and how the issue was handled. Even if you’re not the one to raise a legal issue in the future, that issue could impact you, and you need to know whether the board will stumble its way through the proceedings or resolve problems as fairly and quickly as possible.

Look Over Financial Reports

Be sure that the board knows how to manage money before giving them any of yours. Ask for financial reports, and as you’re glancing over them, what you want to look for is how much is in the reserve fund, the current operational budget, the most recent balance sheet, and the expense and income statements. The board should also have a yearly review of its total expenses and net income.

Know What Monthly Fees You’ll Be Expected To Pay

One of the most important things to realize when it comes to monthly condo association fees is that they can change. Do your current and future budget a favor and inquire as to whether the current monthly fee amount will likely go up or down in the future. That way, you’ll have a better idea of how to plan your finances in the future and avoid nasty financial surprises.

While having a condo could be a good fit for your lifestyle and desires related to homeownership, you need to know exactly what you’re getting into. Consult with an attorney regarding the legal implications so you can make a well-informed final decision.