U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Retirement
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
 
Old 06-12-2014, 09:26 AM
 
741 posts, read 642,971 times
Reputation: 576

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by SUPbud View Post
I'm not thrilled by condos for just a few reasons:

1) I'm generally against any situation in which a "HOA" has leverage or inflicts rules over me
Condo associations are collective bodies of owners who have, if they wish, the opportunity for an active role in the promulgation of rules, penalties, etc., and selecting the board of directors which sets policy on behalf of the owners who elect them. There are, I'll admit, owners who shouldn't buy a condo because they're fiercely independent and want to control every aspect of their lives ... without considering anyone but themselves.

Quote:
2) condos generally don't appreciate as an investment as much as a SFH would
That'll depend upon where the condo is located. Some do appreciate greately. I know homes that don't appreciate rapidly, too. Especially post-2008.

Quote:
3) as a cost-controlling issue, HOA fees rise. I cant stop them or negotiate a lower price or argue about their valuation.
A good condo association board, and involved unit owners ... certainly do bargain hard when it comes to negotiating contracts for repairs or services. Unit owners have the opportunity to voice their opinions and if enough owners disagree with what a board has done it can remove board members or challenge any of the budget items. Assessments do rise, reflecting the condition of the building, the cost of services, etc. But costs rise similary for a single family home. What a condo association has on its side is bargaining npower, especially if it's chosen a management company with many properties which results in preferred pricing. Case in point: I sat on the negotiating committee for a renewal of our cable services contract. A 5-year contract for more than 200 unit owners. We were successful in negotiating a contract for greatly expanded/improved service: premium cable, TiVo boxes and internet service throughout the building in every unit ... for the monthly cost of just $36, for all of that. A single family homeowner would pay more than a $100 for what I get for $36. We also challenge/appeal our property tax levy every several years. Although many single family homes in my neighborhood haven't benefitted from reductions in their property taxes because of the hassle and paperwork, my taxes dropped by $1,000 per year - almost 50% - because our entire association appealed and we hired (at no upfront cost to us) a law firm which specializes in such appeals.

Quote:
So it's like being a sharecropper, paying tribute to the county taxes, the bank, and an HOA all at the same time. Why have 3+ landlords?
Yes, going it alone is what people who want to be independent should do. Some people just don't live/work well with others in cooperative environment. To each his/her own preference. But single family homeowners, and I was one also, "pay tribute to the county taxes, the bank" and also pay for repairs and maintenance ... just as condo owners do. If there's a "bad" condo association it's bad because the unit owners allow it to be bad. It's a self-governed situation where each of has a stake in our building success. You can't say that about single family homes, where your next door neighbors can do what they want even if it's annoying, obnoxious, or they don't maintain their property ... and you have nothing to say about it.
Quick reply to this message

 
Old 06-12-2014, 09:45 AM
 
Location: Glenbogle
730 posts, read 1,030,091 times
Reputation: 1047
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robyn55 View Post
And here - in NE Florida - it's hard to find any nicer newer SFHs that aren't in HOAs (with HOA fees).
I think that may be true of most of the south, even the Carolinas and Maryland. Once you get into the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast states it seems to be easier to find newer non-HOA SFHs.

CT and LI are "allergic" to HOAs, for the most part, which is one of the reasons I like these areas.

In the early 2000s I took a weekend trip to visit a friend NC and just for fun we went looking at open houses on the Sunday. Hardly any of them were NOT in some kind of HOA. I can well imagine that with the building boom that has continued during the ensuing decade there are even more of them now.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-12-2014, 11:04 AM
 
Location: South
80 posts, read 67,287 times
Reputation: 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by Longford View Post
I'm not an attorney, but I have served as a Condo association President and am familiar with, in my state, the laws and generally with Declarations of Condominium Ownership and Bylaws. The 'devil' is always in the details. The property in question (in the linked article) appears to have been unsuccessfully converted from rental to condominium status which also appears to give the developers (including the new developers) the right to convert the units back into rental apartments. That process/right would have been spelled-out in the organizational documents and a purchaser would have received the documents to review prior to closing on the sale. Unfortunately, from what I've personally witnessed, buyers rarely read the organizational documents, but if they do they assume the risks of something like this happening are slim ... so they gloss-over them. Whether this condo association acted properly in amending its organizational documents is a matter that's apparently been taken to court and in due course a ruling will be made. As for buying a condo: I've owned a single family home and two condominiums. I currently live in a condo. Both forms of ownership have their advantages/disadvantages. A decision to buy any property should never be made on the basis of a newspaper article which merely summarizes allegations and presents incomplete information.

Well said.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-12-2014, 11:15 AM
 
Location: SoCal
6,077 posts, read 9,551,122 times
Reputation: 5839
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robyn55 View Post
Loss assessment coverage will only cover you if the assessment is for something that is normally covered by an underlying homeowners' policy. In Florida - that wouldn't usually include things like replacement of most outdoor stuff - like pools - outdoor structures (including parking structures and things like tennis courts) - and especially - landscaping. Our post Andrew assessments were on the order of $25k+ - but $15k of those (more or less) weren't covered by our loss assessment coverage. Robyn
Very true. Special assessments for repairs are not the same as special assessments for improvements. The former can be insured against. The latter, probably not.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-12-2014, 11:26 AM
 
4,539 posts, read 4,850,299 times
Reputation: 3481
I own a condo and got talked to being on the board. In theory Condos are perfect. In reality folks dont pay thei rmaint, break the rules and cause all types of trouble.

80% of building is very nice. Thank God. 20% are Deadbeats. We are in process of foreclosing on the 20% of the dead beats and I wish them well.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-12-2014, 11:31 AM
 
4,539 posts, read 4,850,299 times
Reputation: 3481
Condos are also good at beach as an upper unit protects your belongings in a flood and the main level the association fixes after a storm.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-12-2014, 12:10 PM
 
2,788 posts, read 3,976,933 times
Reputation: 3007
Quote:
Originally Posted by timberline742 View Post
I guess it depends on where you live, of course, like everything. Apartment rents here go up 10%+ a year.
We just purchased, with cash, a condo on the Main Line in Philadelphia. Rents in that area were going up very fast and we got tired of feathering someone else's investment. It seemed like money down the drain with rent. As stated, any neighborhood can have changes, whether SFH or condo.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-12-2014, 12:32 PM
 
14,276 posts, read 24,038,486 times
Reputation: 20111
Quote:
Originally Posted by SandyJet View Post
I own a condo and got talked to being on the board. In theory Condos are perfect. In reality folks dont pay thei rmaint, break the rules and cause all types of trouble.

80% of building is very nice. Thank God. 20% are Deadbeats. We are in process of foreclosing on the 20% of the dead beats and I wish them well.

Not if it is well managed.

When my wife took over the HOA in 2001, only 10 out of 28 units were paying their monthly fees and there were no funds reserved for repairs.

For the past four years, there have been no delinquencies in HOA fees with the exception of the unit that is bank owned. However, there is a lien on the property that will be satisfied when the property is sold next month. The reserves are adequate.

If people don't pay their assessments, they can be evicted
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-12-2014, 12:35 PM
 
741 posts, read 642,971 times
Reputation: 576
Quote:
Originally Posted by SandyJet View Post
80% of building is very nice. Thank God. 20% are Deadbeats. We are in process of foreclosing on the 20% of the dead beats and I wish them well.
I don't think you can foreclose on the units. The lender does that. You can file a lien for non-payment of assessmentss and, with court permission in many/most parts of the country ... petition for an order of eviction/possession, evict the owner/occupant and then rent the unit to recover unpaid assessments until the lender resolves the matter or the court rules on the foreclosure and the unit is sold. We've done exactly that in our bulding post-2008. 60 days of non-payment and we go into court for a lien. We have few such units now. The units which went into foreclosure were owned by people who shouldn't have been given a loan in the first place and they had little or no equity in the purchase. 99% of the sales in our building these past 3 years have been all-cash; no mortgages/borrowing. We're a stronger association because of that ... hopefully! About the rules: if people are breaking the rules and causing trouble ... all condo boards have the opportunity to penalize until it hurts the owner financially ... and, in some instances, to have the owner evicted from the premises (tough to do with owners, however.) Prospective buyers always have the right, before closing the sale, to examine the books and records of an association and to ask questions about the financial condition of a building, including about proposed special assessments, reserve fund balances, units in arrears, for a current financial statement. My experience has been that maybe 5% of the buyers in our building ask for or review such financial information before closing. We also require a sit-down session with prospective buyers ... to explain life in the building, the rules and regulations, and things which aren't covered by the rules and regulations but which are important to know when sharing a building with other people. "Good Neighbor" things. We find that people behave better when they know what's expected of them. We don't dote over people or harass them needlessly, but we do enforce our rules for the most part and 'bad actors' are quickly identified and if they don't mend their ways we do our best to bring them in line with community/Good Neighbor standards for the benefit not only of them, but their neighbors.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-12-2014, 12:43 PM
 
8,224 posts, read 11,942,304 times
Reputation: 18088
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogarven View Post
We just purchased, with cash, a condo on the Main Line in Philadelphia. Rents in that area were going up very fast and we got tired of feathering someone else's investment. It seemed like money down the drain with rent. As stated, any neighborhood can have changes, whether SFH or condo.
Same here. We originally rented a unit for three months; then, when a unit came on the market, we bought it. Our PITI mortgage payment + condo association fee + electric bill together is still less than we were paying for rent. And we get quite a bit of that back in tax benefits and principal payment. Since we bought the condo in 2012, not only have rents gone up a bit, but the condo has appreciated $260,000.

So yeah, condo ownership has definitely worked out better than renting for us.
Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


 
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:
Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Retirement
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top