It’s been said that the more things change, the more they stay the same. As the calendar turns to 2015, that message fits neatly into the condominium picture. There’s no doubt that new technologies, new laws and new philosophies on many aspects of community life are evolving — but at the same time, many of the challenges haven’t changed since the first door opened at the first condominium property here.
As 2015 approached, New England Condominiumturned to its Editorial Advisory Board members for their predictions on what the new year might hold for condominium communities throughout the region.
Defer or Repair?
Humanity’s move from caves into buildings launched an inevitable project: maintaining those structures. The move from single-family homes to condominium units may have shifted the physical burden of that maintenance from the homeowners’ shoulders to the boards’ — but the need for repairs and replacement of worn-out and damage components hasn’t disappeared.
Unfortunately, for too long at too many communities, that work has been deferred, again and again.
“Major repairs continue to haunt associations that have deferred maintaining buildings as the buildings have gotten older,” attorney Stephen Marcus of Marcus, Errico, Emmer & Brooks says. “Some have reached crisis proportions in terms of needing to make the repairs and oftentimes with pretty heavy dollar amounts attached to them. It creates some dissention (among homeowners), because the dollar amount can be staggering, the amount that each unit owner has to come up with.”