How do we get our neighbor to pay condo fees?
It’s easier than you may think. Massachusetts law gives your condo association powerful collection rights. This includes, in most of cases, the ability to hire an attorney at no cost to the association. So, it may be as simple as contacting us.
When should we engage an attorney?
When the unit owner is 60 days behind in his or her condo fees. That’s when your association can pass along all legal costs to the condo owner. There is no reason to wait any longer. In fact, if you let too much time go by, the association may forfeit some of its collection rights.
How does the process start?
The collection process starts with a series of legal notices to both the unit owner and the mortgage lender. Most of the time, this resolves the issue. In many cases, we successfully encourage the unit owner to accept a reasonable repayment plan. Other times, the mortgage lender may pay on the owner’s behalf.
What if the collection notices don’t work?
If 2-3 months pass without full payment, your condo association needs to file a lawsuit. Because the law is clear on condo fees, these cases are typically straightforward and relatively quick. Remember, the defaulting unit owner ultimately bears the legal costs.
After the court process is over, how does the association get paid?
Court judgments for condo fees are powerful. If the unit is rented, your condo association will be able to intercept rent from the tenants. In all cases, the your association will be able to foreclose on the unit and recover all condo fees from the sale.
If your condo association is struggling with unpaid condo fees or if you just need counsel on best practices, please contact us. We advise condo associations throughout Massachusetts on their operations, collect delinquent condo fees, and find creative solutions to their problems.