Condo Association Management Blog

Do votes by email for Massachusetts condo and HOA boards count?

Posted on Wed, Apr 1, 2015 @ 05:46 AM

Tags: Board of Directors, Condo & HOA Law, CCR, Bylaws & Rules, Massachusetts

Many states prohibit condo/HOA boards from taking votes via email. Does anyone know if this is true in Massachusetts? I looked through the Massachusetts General Laws 183A and couldn't find a reference to this issue.

Massachusetts Condo Association dealing with more snow removal issues

Posted on Wed, Feb 25, 2015 @ 08:00 AM

Tags: Board of Directors, CCR, Bylaws & Rules, Massachusetts

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I live in a 10 unit Massachusetts Condo Association in Boston. The owner of the top floor condo unit has exclusive rights to the roof deck.

Who is responsible for removal of snow from the deck, the condo unit owner or the Condo Association?

Garden-level condo units facing major problems in Massachusetts Condo Association

Posted on Thu, Feb 19, 2015 @ 08:00 AM

Tags: Board of Directors, Condo & HOA Law, CCR, Bylaws & Rules, Massachusetts

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My Massachusetts Condo Association has a dangerous snow issue blocking several condo units. The units are ground-floor/semi-garden, with sunken living room and all else on the first floor, and have snow almost to the top of every window (some from snow blowing, some from natural occurrence and drifting.

Is this a fire safety issue, since the only means of egress is the main exit door, which has 8-foot snow banks blocking patio?

Regarding removal of the snow, the Board suggested paying the snow removal team extra money to shovel out our condensers, which are all individually owned.  I’m guessing payment for snow removal around individual condo units is not out of the realm of their thinking. Further, there is nothing stated in our documents that addresses this issue.

Should the issue of snow removal be dealt with by the Board and paid from condominium funds, since there are 12 condo units facing the same situation?

Massachusetts Condo Association facing major issues with ice dams

Posted on Wed, Feb 18, 2015 @ 08:00 AM

Tags: Budgets & Finance, Property Damage & Repairs, Board of Directors, CCR, Bylaws & Rules, Massachusetts

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I live in a (very snowy) Massachusetts Condo Association.

With all of the recent snow, I am concerned that ice dams building up the roof will lead to interior water damage when the snow begins to melt. I’ve taken care of the ice dams on my roof and gutters. However, my neighbors have neglected to do so, which could result in water damage to my condo since our units are adjacent to one another.

Our Board of Directors, who are typically very responsive, have not been treating this issue with the urgency it deserves. If not dealt with proactively, this issue can quickly lead to major damage upon thawing temperatures, which are in the near forecast!

How can I ensure that action is taken before it is too late?

Do property managers work for the Board, condo owners, or both?

Posted on Mon, Jan 26, 2015 @ 08:00 AM

Tags: Property Management, Condo Association Management, Board of Directors, Condo & HOA Law, CCR, Bylaws & Rules, Disabilities & Owner Rights, Massachusetts

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I am a condo owner in a Massachusetts Condo Association.

The Association is having difficulties with a secretive and controlling Board of Directors, as they are insular and regard challenges to their decisions as threatening and insulting. The condo owners are in no way rude or out of control, they are merely seeking information.

An attempt was made to have our Condo Association property manager intercede, but they are claiming that they work for the Board and not the condo owners. If this is true, who works or advocates for condo owners?

Advice would be appreciated!

Should minor condo unit projects require special assessment fees?

Posted on Tue, Dec 30, 2014 @ 08:00 AM

Tags: Condo & HOA Assessments, Property Damage & Repairs, Condo Reserves, Board of Directors, Fees, Foreclosures, Delinquencies & Collections, Massachusetts

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All condo owners in my Massachusetts Condo Association were recently charged a Special Assessment Fee of $35.00. This charge was to cover the expense of placing a plastic cage over dryer vents, and was labeled ‘bird mitigation’. The total collected was $2500.00.

It is my understanding that Special Assessments are for Capital Improvements, not for small projects that can easily be paid for through regular funds. As well, I was told by a Board member that the main reason for the charge was to ‘get even’ with another condo owner who had called the Board of Health because her neighboring condo unit was placing bird seed all over the floor of his patio.

Our Annual Meeting is coming up soon, and I would like to bring up a possible refund on this ridiculous charge. I’ve researched this on my own, but can’t seem to locate the rule on when assessments can be made, so am asking for help in this matter. Thank you in advance.

Disabled condo owner troubled by Association's lack of accomodation

Posted on Tue, Dec 16, 2014 @ 08:00 AM

Tags: Condo Association Management, Parking Issues, CCR, Bylaws & Rules, Disabilities & Owner Rights, Massachusetts

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I live in a Massachusetts Condo Association with deeded parking. I’m handicapped and disabled with severe pain and weakness, and am nearly home bound. I’ve hired help to clear off my car after a snowfall. In order for the plow to remove snow from the parking lot, it is necessary for my car to be moved to a visitors’ spot that would have already been cleared. However, the condo association has refused my request on multiple occasions, citing that I must follow the same rules as other condo association members.

Mustn’t they provide for this accommodation? Is there potential for suit here, given that this could be in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act?

Condo association member objects to next year's budget and condo fees

Posted on Tue, Dec 2, 2014 @ 08:00 AM

Tags: Budgets & Finance, Condo Association Management, Board of Directors, Fees, Foreclosures, Delinquencies & Collections, Massachusetts

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I am a member of a Massachusetts Condo Association. Our building has four condo units, and last year’s condo fees were $200 per month. According to next year’s budget, which has already been voted in, condo fees will go up to $550 per month. After reviewing the budget, I believe some of the line items have been overestimated (ex. $2000 for snow removal, which cost $200 the previous year).

Can I write an objection letter for next year’s planned budget? If so, how can I go about this?

Massachusetts Condo Association shared utility usage question

Posted on Sat, Nov 1, 2014 @ 08:00 AM

Tags: Condo & HOA Assessments, Property Damage & Repairs, Board of Directors, Fees, Foreclosures, Delinquencies & Collections, Massachusetts

Condo Association Water Meter

I live in a Massachusetts Condo Association.  We recently had a new shared water meter installed. My question is this.  If you have a shared utility but you feel your usage is below what your share is, how should you approach your board?

Condo insurance claim and confusion over proof of loss

Posted on Sat, Oct 18, 2014 @ 08:00 AM

Tags: Condo Association Insurance, Massachusetts

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My question is in regard to proof of loss when one files a condo insurance claim. I live in a duplex; my neighbor and I are side-by-side and we each have our own driveway. The units are considered condos but it's just the two of us so we don't have an official condo association because it would only be three members.

An accident occurred on my driveway this past July, totaling my cars and damaging my driveway. I've filed the claim with our condo insurance master policy. It's been quite a process, between the adjuster and insurance company. Trying to figure out who is supposed to sign what has me at a loss at times. I had signed the proof of loss, but soon after the adjuster didn't know who to address the check to! I had to call the bank and they knew more than the adjuster. Now he's telling me that my neighbor and I must both sign the proof of loss, and that the previous proof was rejected. The neighbor’s name is on the master policy but we both pay for the policy and I was told it didn't matter whose name is listed. The adjuster also mentioned that I would have to pay for the deductible, but the insurance company is telling me just the opposite, that the other party is responsible.

The process is confusing at times and I’m just wondering if anyone has insight into this matter.  Thanks for the opportunity to blog my concerns!