Imagine the scene: you have been living in your condominium for the last few years, enjoying the simplicity of not having to take care of all sorts of chores that drove you nuts when you owned a house, when you suddenly and out of the blue receive summons for a meeting of the condo owners.
What could be the purpose of such a meeting? Of course, you did not bother to attend the annual meeting of your condo association, so you don't know exactly what is going on. You think that the administrators must be doing an OK job and all those paper reports and presentations by either lawyers or accountants or engineers were not your cup of tea.
But the request to meet specifies that the owners will have to decide on assessing every one of you in the thousands of dollars to begin repairs on the building that cannot be delayed.
You have not made any provision, in your budget, for the disbursement of such a large sum of cash. What happened, and who are those administrators who can recommend such expenditures on such short notice.
Welcome to condo living and draw some lessons from such situations. Those special convocations for meetings are usually bad news. Some administrators, prodded by the owners to keep the monthly assessment low, neglect to do basic maintenance that can on the long term become very expensive. A small leak, not taken care off immediately, might create damages in the thousands of dollars for the owners.
Condo living is, whether you like it or not, a participatory type of living. You all own the building and you are all responsible to supply enough funds to keep it in good shape. If you want to save yourself the aggravation of being caught in a spiral of special assessments, just make sure to be part or delegate your vote to elect administrators who are not only trustworthy, but also competent and farsighted.
With such a team, you will save yourself long, lonely nights, trying to figure out how to pay for those special payments.
Gilles Martin is a Real Estate Agent, accomplished Entrepreneur and long-time businessman. His articles can be read on Musings of a Real Estate Agent .