Articles filed under Condominiums

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  • Avoid the pitfalls of proxy voting Oct 12, 2013 12:57 AM
    Q. A column of yours from earlier this year discussed an election practice that many associations that I manage use. That is, the proxy given by one owner to another, that designates who the owner wants the proxy holder to vote for in a board election, is counted as the ballot at the annual meeting. If so many associations use this practice how can it be wrong?

  • Boards must release common condo expense reports Oct 5, 2013 12:05 AM
    Q. The board of our condominium association does not produce a year-to-date report showing the expenses for the current year when they present the proposed budget for the following year. Please let me know if this is legal.

  • How does an association devide deductible costs? Sep 28, 2013 12:41 AM
    Q. A unit owner turned the water on in their bathtub and, forgetting they had done so, left the unit for about an hour. The tub overflowed and caused damage to the common elements and to other units that was covered by the association’s property insurance.

  • Condo boards must follow theses rules in budget preparation Sep 21, 2013 12:30 AM
    It’s budget preparation and adoption time for many associations. Here are some questions and answers that should help get through the process.

  • New owner not responsible to pay prior owner’s unpaid assessments Sep 14, 2013 12:04 AM
    Q. The closing of a unit in our association occurred without the board’s knowledge, and without the seller requesting an assessment status letter. There were unpaid assessments due and owing by the prior owner at the time of closing. Usually, the seller requests an assessment status letter from us, and this has not happened to our association before. Is the new owner responsible for the prior owner’s unpaid assessments?

  • Owners do not have right to ask questions at board meetings Sep 7, 2013 12:56 AM
    Q. I have always wondered about a practice of our homeowners association. Owners are permitted to attend the board meetings; however, owners are not able to pose questions to the board or comment on matters being discussed by the board. Is this legal?

  • Adopt rules for recorded board meetings Aug 31, 2013 12:59 AM
    Q. I understand that a unit owner in a condominium association can videotape a board meeting. Can the board impose any restrictions on this?

  • How determine size of reserves Aug 24, 2013 12:45 AM
    Q. Every year, the board of our association struggles to determine how much of a reserve contribution should be included in the annual budget. Is there a “rule of thumb” or formula to determine how much of a contribution to reserves should be included in the budget each year?

  • Association bylaws determine voting rules Aug 17, 2013 12:08 AM
    Q. There are only three candidates for the three open seats on the board, each for a two-year term, that are up for election at the upcoming annual meeting. Do we have to cast ballots, or can we elect this slate by acclamation?

  • There’s no limit to number of proxies an owner can gather Aug 10, 2013 12:31 AM
    Q. A great number of units in our condominium association are investor owned and being leased. The board president claims she has the voting proxy for about 30 units.It appears she controls who is elected to the board. Is this legal?

  • Avoid annual meeting pitfalls Aug 3, 2013 12:31 AM
    Annual meeting season for many Illinois associations will occur over the balance of the year. The annual meeting may be the most important event for an association, yet there are numerous potential pitfalls that can raise legal challenges (or create political havoc) if the process is not conducted properly.

  • Four-year board term acceptable Jul 27, 2013 12:01 AM
    Q. The declaration of covenants for our common interest community association provides that the term of office for each board member is four years. That seems like a long time. Is a four-year board term permitted?

  • Waterford at Prairie Park featured in model profile Jul 26, 2013 12:04 AM
    Prairie Park’s Waterford model won a gold key award and remains the Wheeling community’s most popular floor plan. The design shows many great features that appeal to a lot of people, said Jamie Smith, vice president of marketing for Smith Family Construction Inc., developer of the community.

  • A condo board can buy bulk high-speed Internet service Jul 20, 2013 12:19 AM
    Q. The board of our condominium association is considering entering into a bulk high speed Internet service contract for all units. I don’t want the service, and I certainly don’t want to pay for it. Does the board have the authority to enter into this agreement and charge me for the Internet service?

  • Condo talk: Who can serve on association board Jul 14, 2013 4:47 PM
    Q. Many units in our association are owned by entities, rather than by individual people. Our annual meeting is coming up, and a question has been raised as to who is eligible to serve on the board when a unit is owned by a corporation or limited liability company.

  • Defining a majority for the purposes of rule changes Jul 6, 2013 12:33 AM
    Q. An amendment to our condominium association’s declaration requires the affirmative vote of owners having not less than two-thirds of the vote in the association. A controversy has erupted as to whether this means the vote of two-thirds of the owners that are present at the meeting, or whether it means two-thirds of all of the owners in the association. Which is correct?

  • Condo owners may vote as they please Jun 29, 2013 12:18 AM
    Q. Our condominium association recently held its annual meeting. There were four candidates running for the three open seats on the board. The ballots identified the four candidates. The instruction provided to the owners at the meeting was to vote for three candidates. About one third of the ballots were cast for only one of the candidates; rather than for three. Are these ballots valid?

  • How to manage email communications with association attorney Jun 22, 2013 2:46 AM
    Communication between associations and legal counsel has changed dramatically as the result of email and the mobile devices upon which email is sent and received. This can have a favorable impact on the attorney-client relationship; however, it can also lead to frustrations.

  • Lifeguards required when young children allowed unsupervised Jun 15, 2013 4:46 AM
    Q. Our association has a swimming pool. Under what circumstances do we have to have a lifeguard?

  • Dealing with offensive noise Jun 8, 2013 5:40 AM
    Q. An owner in our association installed hardwood floors where there used to be carpet. The downstairs neighbor of ten years now complains he hears every footstep from the upstairs unit. The association’s governing documents do not prohibit hardwood floors. Can the Board do anything about this issue?

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