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Sprinkler system mandated by state, who's responsible HOA or owner?

Posted on Sat, Aug 27, 2011 @ 08:03 AM

We live in a three unit building in which State/Municipal Law mandates alarm and sprinkler systems. Ours is the only building in the development since the developer didn't build additional 3 units after the law was passed and previous buildings were grandfathered. The systems were in place when the present owners purchased their units. In fact, none of us were advised as to the status of the fire protection and the board at the time was also unaware of their existence Now that we are aware the question is who is responsible for maintenance, inspections, upgrades and monitoring..the association or the unit owners or both? It is the contention of the individual owners that the association is responsible since it will be in place long after the owners have relocated and due to the fact that it is mandated by law.



What State are you in?

posted @ Saturday, August 27, 2011 8:51 AM by Victor

Tiue Assiciation is made up of unit owners.I don't really understand your question. The alarm system is common property and as such the association is responsible.Costs associated with this system should be included in your budget and becomes one factor in determining your monthly condominium fee.

posted @ Saturday, August 27, 2011 10:30 AM by Scott

IMO, it would depend upon how the alarm and sprinkler systems are designated -- a common area, limited common area, etc. I would think it should be outlined in your CCRs. If not, then I would think the assn should take on the resp. as an assurance that all systems are properly maintained, inspected, etc. As Scott has said, all associated costs would be included in your mo. assessment so there would be no additional cost to the assn.

posted @ Saturday, August 27, 2011 11:21 AM by mary

This is a good example of how a real estate agent can bungle a condominium purchase. Your agent should have been aware of this requirement and forewarned you about the problem before you bought the condo. If I were you I would challenge the association to remedy the situation. They have the funds to have a lawyer look into the matter. If the lawyer says they are responsible according to the by-laws then let the city know that they will be taking care of the sprinkler system. If the association tells you they are not responsible then you must pay for it. If you don't believe the association then your only option is to get a legal opinion on your own dollar. This happened to me when I moved into my condo. I was not advised that there was a pending $1,000 LID waiting to be put into action (it had been planned over a year before and the owner knew about it but said nothing). I ended up having to pay the tax. Good luck, it sounds like you drew the short straw on this one.

posted @ Saturday, August 27, 2011 3:33 PM by Renee

Speaking here as a General Contractor, it's highly probable (say, 99.9%) that one fire sprinkler system serves all the units. In other words, there is one main line from the City water system going into the building and then it branches off into the individual units. It's not a system serving one unit, it serves all the units in a building. 
It's kinda hard to be "unaware" of the system. Look up at the ceiling. Do you see sprinkler heads?  
As an earlier poster mentioned, what you have is a real estate salesman who has no idea of the issues involved with condos. They are not single family houses, and have a whole different set of issues. 

posted @ Saturday, August 27, 2011 3:54 PM by Don

Your questions makles it sound like the owners and the HOA are different entities. Look to your condo docs. Responsibility for the costs incurred for this upgrade rrq'd may be paid for by both depending on what your HOA doc say. Your answer should be there !!

posted @ Saturday, August 27, 2011 5:11 PM by chuck McEvoy

Reading stuff like this makes me really happy that they don't have control over irrigation systems. That would be one straw too many.

posted @ Tuesday, October 15, 2013 1:52 PM by Charles Neslon

The condo should be responsible for the irrigation repair, because it's part of the common area. It should be taken care of by the funds from the condo association. It doesn't make sense for individual owners to pay for the irrigation. http://davidsonslandscape.com

posted @ Thursday, September 25, 2014 5:45 PM by Dolores Brown

That's a good question. I would assume it's the owner's job. Regardless of whose job it is, irrigation systems are a fairly simple thing. It wouldn't be a big deal for you to replace the sprinkler system yourself. It's important to hire an experienced professional that can help you in any situation. http://www.mjslawnscape.com/irrig.htm

posted @ Monday, December 01, 2014 3:29 PM by Cathy

I think the sprinkler system is considered part of the common area. The condo association should take care of problems with the irrigation. It makes sense to just have the condo association to take care of it. http://www.michaelsirrigation.com

posted @ Tuesday, December 02, 2014 3:07 PM by Dolores Brown

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