Resolving Your Condominium Association Disputes

Over 65 million people live in a home that is overseen by a community association. These exist for a multitude of reasons. The associations usually ensure that each home holds a standard so that its appearance or condition doesn’t negatively affect someone else’s home value. Neighbors have a common interest in terms that they want to get the most significant return on their investments. 

In some cases, there are shared amenities such as pools and tennis courts that the associations maintain with the owners’ fees. As more people move into cities, developers have been converting one home into several units. Your community association may be nothing more than a single building with three separate units. 

A Common Myth

People may not fight an association because they may have been told that associations can do whatever they want. This is only partially true. Although each association may differ in how they choose to govern the association, they are bound within the parameters of state law. 

The association does not circumvent the law. Some people live under the false assumption that the associations create their own rules freely—and they do, but there are limits. State laws differ from one another as well.

Overcoming A Dispute

People may skim or outright avoid reading the document that lists out the association’s rules and penalties. For example, are you allowed to paint your door or alter the color of the shutters? Associations may very well have rules or regulations that limit your choices—or they spell out the procedures for requesting an alteration. The fact remains that the best way to win a dispute is to avoid one by reading the rules.

Some people may push back by saying they have been fined or reprimanded for something that wasn’t in the bylaws. In that scenario, send a polite letter asking for clarification. Follow it up with a phone call or conversation that is equally polite. If you go in fighting, you will likely get a fight from the association as well.

The key is not to make the situation worse. If you painted your door without the association’s permission (as was required by the governing documents), what penalties do you face? There can be a fine or worse yet the association could put a lien on the property.  At worst, some states (like Illinois) allow for associations to sue and even foreclose on the property under certain conditions. As one could imagine, choosing to stop paying your association dues would risk the most dire financial consequences. 

Auricchio Law Offices

If you have exhausted your options and are still in a dispute with your association, it may be time to pursue a different avenue. For condominium association representation, contact Auricchio Law Offices for a free consultation. Our firm has extensive experience connected to real estate, housing violations, and even landlord-tenant disputes. We would be proud to apply our experience to your case.

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Auricchio Law Offices

Auricchio Law Offices in Chicago provides a complete range of real estate services. We facilitate residential and commercial real estate transactions, advise and represent condominium associations, and represent property owners in real estate litigation. Whatever your real estate issue, we will work diligently to achieve your goals in a timely and efficient manner.

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