Buying a condo is often seen as a hassle-free way to enjoy homeownership without the responsibilities of maintaining a standalone house.
However, like any community, condo living comes with its own set of challenges. One of the most concerning issues can be signs of misconduct by the condo association.
1. Unexplained fee increases
Condo associations typically collect fees to cover maintenance, repairs and other communal expenses. If you notice sudden and unexplained increases in these fees, it could be a red flag. Legitimate fee adjustments should be transparent, and residents should receive communication about the reasons behind them.
2. Inadequate financial transparency
A well-functioning condo association should provide clear financial statements to residents. These statements detail income, expenses and reserves. If your association is reluctant to share this information or if financial statements are consistently incomplete, it raises concerns about transparency. Residents have the right to understand the use of paid fees and should be able to access this information easily.
3. Excessive board control
A board that makes decisions on behalf of the community governs condo associations. While boards play an important role, excessive control can be a sign of misconduct. If the board operates without seeking input from residents, makes decisions without proper voting processes or if elections seem irregular, it may indicate a lack of democratic governance within the association.
As one of the approximately 29% of Americans living in a condominium community, housing cooperative or homeowners association, you expect the board to be fair and deliver. Being vigilant about signs of misconduct is important for maintaining a healthy and harmonious living environment.