Page 19 - New England Condominium February 2019
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NEWENGLANDCONDO.COM  NEW ENGLAND CONDOMINIUM   - FEBRUARY 2019     19  ■    Depth of Knowledge & Experience  ■    Expert Advice  ■    Creative Approaches & Solutions  ■    Flexible Billing Arrangements  Thomas Bhisitkul  (781) 817-4611  Christopher S. Malloy  (781) 817-4604  Douglas A. Troyer  (781) 817-4605  Thomas O. Moriarty  (781) 817-4603  (781) 817-4900  30 B  RAINTREE   H  ILL   O  FFICE   P  ARK  , S  UITE   205  B  RAINTREE  , MA 02184  (617) 934-4550  265 F  RANKLIN   S  TREET  , S  UITE   1801  B  OSTON  , MA  02110  MTM is a full-service Condominium & Real Estate Law Firm  Experience,  Integrity,  & Drive Set  Us Apart  Uncommon Expertise for your Community of Common Interests  What a Handful  This may not come as a relief to manag-  ers the world over, but there are actually   multiple reasons  why managing an asso-  ciation in either city or suburb can be ex-  tremely difficult. But those reasons vary,   based on location.  “Disputes over  management opera-  tions  are  equally  balanced  between  city   and suburbs,” says Barnett. “However, I   do see a lot more city condos opting for   self-management, just given the fact that   they tend to be smaller. When there are   disputes among two- or three-unit asso-  ciations,  I  see  more  instances  involving   derivative claims, because it just becomes   a standoff situation. I think that just boils   down to the housing options that are   available.  “And with a lack of formal manage-  ment company, you have issues with in-  formal operation, and people paying bills   as they come in, rather than doing so   pursuant  to  a budget  and  assessing  and   collecting common expenses. So, in the   usually city-based smaller – i.e., under   five-unit – associations, there’s more of a   chance that they’ll be self-managed and  ally affects quality of life. In other places  tasked with making decisions on behalf of   need to deal with all of the hurdles that  you still have daylight when you get out of  the collective – there are plenty of simi-  come with that.”  Some  managers  will  tell  you  that  the   aforementioned hustle and bustle of city  life is all bad. “You encounter all walks of   life is no joke – and   is, in fact, exhaust-  ing.  “It’s  chaos,”  says  Pedro Foley,   General Manager of   The Courts at South   Beach in Miami.   “The city is chaos.   That’s the only word   that I can use. I live   19 miles from the   association at which   I work. It takes me   two hours to get   here, each way. And   the  working envi-  ronment is non-stop. I’ll get in at 9 a.m.  sacrifice your family time; you want to be  To what the board may need  react may   and sometimes won’t have the opportu-  nity to sit down at my desk until 1 p.m.   By the time I get home at 7, my kid is near   ready to go to sleep, as is my wife, who  munity association – neighbors investing     works for an international company. It re-  work; you have time for this or that.”  Of course, Foley isn't saying that city  ciations lie.  life, which I enjoy,”  sibilities of a board anywhere are exactly   he notes. “I have  the  same,  whether  you’re  talking  about   Jewish  residents,  Russians,  Ger-  mans…  everyone  from  around  the  in White Plains, New York. “The board’s   world  living here.  commitment toward the betterment of its   That diversity fac-  tor. And the money   is good! I’m not go-  ing  to  get paid  the  times – there is no fabled town where run-  salary I get paid  ning a community association is a cake-  here outside of the  walk,  just  as  there  is  no  specific  enclave   city. Everything has  wherein maintaining a residence is neces-  its cost. You want  sarily a hell. A board’s priorities must be   more  money,  you  a constant, regardless of its surroundings.   home more, you get less money.”  Common Bonds  Of course, given the nature of the com-  in a larger residence, and an elected board   larities regardless of where different asso-  “The fiduciary duties and fiscal respon-  5th Avenue in Manhattan or Main Street   U.S.A.,” says  Ronald  A.  Sher,  a  partner   with the law firm of Himmelfarb & Sher   property and residents is a constant.”  So for better or worse – and excluding   weather, which is its own challenge some-  depend on location, but its motivation   should be to protect and improve upon   the investment of the community.                      n  Mike Odenthal is a staff writer/reporter   with New England Condominium.   “Disputes over   management operations   are equally balanced   between city and suburbs.   However,  I do see a lot   more city condos opting   for self-management.”           — Jennifer Barnett

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