If you take long time to report a work-related injury or illness, the more that claim can cost your employer in medical, legal, and insurance fees.
Serenity is a good topic when it comes to condominiums. Condominium living can often bring out the worst in people. There are others, too many to mention here, where dysfunctional trustees have brought condominiums to financial ruin and chaos.
Despite this discordance, condominium conversions of two and three multifamily homes in and around Boston, Cambridge and Somerville continue to be a popular way to cash in on the hot real estate market. A lot of these homes are owned and occupied by extended families, some of whom stay in the new condominium, and some who leave for greener pastures.
Smaller condominiums, however, can be a recipe for disaster without careful planning and drafting of the legal documents which govern them. Limited common areas are technically common area space but reserved for the exclusive use of the unit owner which it serves.
Examples include private decks, porches, roof decks, parking spaces, and storage areas. The drafter can be flexible and provide that limited common areas must be repaired by either the condo association or the unit owner.
The master deed will often impose restrictions upon the use of units or rights of first refusal for the trustees or other unit owners. Care must be taken here to ensure that the units remain marketable while also protecting the serenity of unit owners.
Rights of first refusal are discouraged these days. The declaration of trust creates the condominium trust association and a board of trustees which govern the condominium. For smaller condominiums between 2 and 5 units, the key is crafting the provisions so as to prevent dead-locking on major decisions.
I almost always provide for super-majority voting on all major issues. For 2 unit conversions, I recommend unanimous voting on all major issues.
And for all condos I use a mandatory arbitration clause to mediate any deadlocks.
The declaration of trust should also contain all of the unique rules and regulations of the condominium. If these are not attached and recorded with the declaration of trust, they are not binding on unit owners. Rules should be drafted in consultation with the owners and can cover anything from satellite dishes, pets, smoking, signs, preserving architectural integrity, noise, quiet hours, parties, trash, etc.
Annual Budget, Condo Fees and Real Estate Taxes The condominium should have a written annual budget and monthly condo fees established. A separate condominium bank account should also be set up with checks, deposit slips, etc.
The monthly condo fee is calculated as the annual budget divided by the number of units divided by With respect to real estate taxes on a condo conversion, the building will continue to be assesses as a single dwelling until the tax assessor catches up to the conversion.
A tax letter agreement should be prepared so that real estate taxes are prorated and properly assessed and paid by each unit owner after the conversion until each unit becomes separately assessed.
Unit Floor Plans and Site Plan All new condominium conversions must have prepared unit floor plans, and in Boston, a surveyed site plan. Even for two unit conversions, the cost is a fair amount. And you always get what you pay for, so keep that in mind!
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The Massachusetts Property Insurance Underwriting Association (MPIUA) also known as the Massachusetts FAIR Plan (Fair Access to Insurance Requirements) provides basic property insurance on eligible property for applicants who have been unable to gain insurance through the voluntary market.
Update 3/30/ SJC Reverses Appeals Court, Allowing Rolling Lien Procedure. Ruling Hurts Condominium Associations’ Collection Efforts. The Massachusetts Condominium Act gives condominium associations the ability to file a “super-lien” for unpaid monthly condominium fees, six months of which is given priority over a first mortgage against .
Drummer Boy Homes Association, Inc. v. Britton. In a long awaited ruling pitting condominium associations against mortgage lenders backed by the Federal Housing Finance Authority, the Supreme Judicial Court has upheld the so-called “rolling” super-priority lien for unpaid condominium fees.