Condo boards have a message for delinquent owners who fail to pay their monthly fees: Pay up or move out.
Over the last few years, condos increasingly have faced more residents who are delinquent on their monthly fees, which has meant less money for condo buildings' maintenance and amenities.
Condo boards reportedly are now taking a more proactive approach to cracking down on delinquent condo owners.
“Some are publicly shaming deadbeats by posting their names on hallway bulletin boards or barring them from facilities like health clubs and concierge services,” The New York Times reports. “Others are reflexively filing liens against owners who are more than 60 days in arrears. And boards are writing requirements into their bylaws to provide additional protections.”
More boards say they’re adopting a “zero-tolerance policy” when it comes to missing dues. For example, one board in New York City building told The New York Times that its policy includes a 10-day grace period in which the owner is sent a letter about failing to pay dues. If the owner doesn’t respond, a second letter is issued and then referred to the building’s lawyer who may then file a lien against the unit.
Why are condo boards seemingly stepping up their efforts more recently to go after delinquent residents?
“An improving real estate market means there is a greater likelihood that delinquent owners can sell their units for enough to repay the condominium; a proactive approach fits with condominiums’ increasing stringency on buyers’ financials; and finally, after enduring the downturn for several years, boards are growing impatient with owners who are in arrears,” The New York Times notes.
Some condo boards say they are willing to work out a payment plan with delinquent owners. Or, they may encourage the owners to sell their condo so that the proceeds can be used to pay the outstanding debt they owe.
Source: “Condo Boards Take a Stand on Delinquencies,” The New York Times (June 22, 2012)