Condo owners annually elect a board of directors to oversee the property’s maintenance and management.    (If not self-managed),  these boards hire property managers to advise them, to collect assessment fees, manage the maintenance staff, oversee repairs to the common elements, and to facilitate the transfer of property between condo buyers and sellers.

I’ve worked with fabulous property managers over the years, but I’ve seen condo associations fall prey to unqualified managers who give poor advice, squander maintenance fees, don’t plan for major maintenance projects, and impede property transfers.

Remember, owners — you are the BOSS! Don’t let the property manager let you forget who’s in charge, and always demand the best service. Know what to expect from your property manager to maintain the value of your home.

I (finally) am past the attorney review period on a sale which almost tanked, thanks to a property manager who didn’t feel compelled to give us information on

  • how many condo owners in the association were in arrears (behind in their assessment payments), and
  • how many condo owners were in foreclosure.

As it turned out, the association was in good shape — only 4 were in arrears and 1 in foreclosure — but because 10 days elapsed, the buyer almost chose to walk away from the deal.

This is the same condo where I couldn’t get 22.1 disclosure information unless my buyer paid a $300 fee, and where simple questions like “what is the per cent owner occupancy”  were met with a rude, “go to the website and order the transfer packet (the $300 fee).

Is this a joke?  It certainly sounds ridiculous.  Even my seller called to ask a couple questions, and she was rudely shot down.

So, ask yourself — do you know all the answers to the 22.1 disclosure (see previous post)?  If you ask your property manager, would he/she give you answers without having to fork over a fortune?

Maybe your board should review the property manager contract and review your service.


For information on Chicago real estate, homes for sale, and property management,
call Anne Rossley of Prudential Rubloff.

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