Stamford, Greenwich, and Fairfield County Real Estate,condos in ct,luxury homes, special assessments,Condos, CondominiumsWaterfront specialist Stamford, Greenwich CT

Information about purchasing a condo in CT, bylaw's
management companies and special assessments.


by Christina Tracy

Condominium Bylaws Documents and Special Assessments

In Connecticut, a Condominium Seller, is required to provide condominium documents from the management company who oversee's the complex to the prospective purchaser. These documents are typically sent to the Buyer's Real Estate attorney after the offer has been accepted and prior to signing contracts. In the State of Connecticut during the document review period you may terminate the contract without penalty.

The condo documents must include a resale certificate which shows the condominium associations budgets, insurance, special assessments, any lawsuits and other matters that affect the association.

The condo's common budget should state what is covered as far as repairs and who is responsible for roofs, decks, exterior painting and up keep.

If a special assessment has been discussed at a meeting or if there is talk of raising the condo fee's, it will also be revealed in the condominium association meeting minutes. A special assessment could mean coming out of pocket several thousands of dollar's. This is important to find out in case further negotiations may be needed to cover a possible special assessment.

The condominium association normally carries an insurance policy that covers the common
areas and jointly owned areas. Individual owners normally are responsible for the interiors.

Each association is different so it is very important to review all of the condominium documents.

Below are good questions to ask the board when looking to invest in a condominium.

1. What percentage of the condo units are owner-occupied? What percentage are tenant-occupied?
Generally, the higher the percentage of owner-occupied units, the more marketable the units will be at resale.

2. What covenants, bylaws, and restrictions govern the property? What grandfather clauses are in place?
You may find, for instance, that those who buy a property after a certain date can't rent out their units, but buyers who bought earlier can. Ask for a copy of the bylaws to determine if you can live within them. And have an attorney review the property documents, including the master deed.

3. How much does the association keep in reserve? How is that money being invested?

4. Are the condo association assessments keeping pace with the annual rate of inflation? Smart boards raise assessments a certain percentage each year to build reserves to fund future repairs. To determine if the assessment is reasonable, compare the rate to others in the area.

5. What does and doesn't the condominium assessment cover—common area maintenance, recreational facilities, trash collection, snow removal, dock's, seawall's?

6. What special assessments have been mandated in the past five years? How much was each owner responsible for? Some special assessments are unavoidable. But repeated, expensive assessments could be a red flag about the condition of the building or the board's fiscal policy.

7. How much turnover occurs in the building?

8. Is the project in litigation? If the builders or homeowners are involved in a lawsuit, reserves can be depleted quickly!

9. Is the developer reputable? Find out what other projects the developer has built and visit one if you can. Ask residents about their perceptions. If the roof, windows, and bricks aren't in good repair, they become your problem once you buy.

10. Are multiple associations involved in the property? In very large developments, umbrella associations, as well as the smaller association into which you're buying, may require separate assessments.


Christina Tracy is a top rated Real Estate Expert in Lower Fairfield county. If you would like to find out more information about Real Estate in the area please call
203 273-5810 or email




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