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Otto Polyakov
Otto Polyakov

Buying A Condo In Ma [BETTER]



Buying a condominium in the Boston area or around Massachusetts can be a great home option, but there is much for homebuyers to consider before deciding which condo or townhouse is a smart choice. Finding the right condominium requires home buyers to do their due diligence. The following 12 questions to ask will help you make a well-informed decision, avoid potential pitfalls, and learn how to buy a condo in Massachusetts.




buying a condo in ma


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Request copies of the minutes of the condo association's board meetings to see what issues and concerns owners have recently discussed. By reviewing the minutes, you easily can discern whether there are problems with management, maintenance and/or residents. Looking over the minutes may also reveal any projects that are underway, including those that the seller may not have mentioned and may require a special assessment (see more on special assessments below). Many complexes post notices in lobbies or near elevators. A notice urging residents to lock their car doors may indicate that there has been a number of thefts from automobiles. A notice indicating that residents are not disposing of trash properly may be a result of a rodent problem.


Before buying, it is important to check if there is an approaching special assessment. A special assessment is a fee for capital improvements, such as new roofs and driveway paving, each unit owner has to pay in addition to the monthly condominium fee. As long as they don't occur every year, special assessments can help keep the regular monthly maintenance fee low. Look at cash reserves over the last three years, if the budgets are available, and check if they show a decreasing trend. This means the reserve fund is not adequate and a special assessment may be necessary to keep the condo association in the black.


A building's delinquency rate is the percentage of residents who are late paying their homeowner's dues. Many banks will not approve mortgages for buildings with high delinquency rates. Massachusetts provides a unique form of protection for condominium associations against delinquent fees known as the "super-lien process." Massachusetts General Law c. 183A 6(c) states outstanding condominium fees are a lien against the delinquent unit from the date the fees become due. The delinquent unit owner is personally liable for all condominium fees, including late charges, fines, interest, and collection costs. A properly filed condominium fee lien is entitled to super-priority status over all other non-municipal liens, including a first mortgage on the unit, for up to six (6) months of condominium fees, attorney's fees, and collection costs. Furthermore, the lien cannot be discharged by way of bankruptcy. An experienced real estate attorney should be consulted if there is a delinquency issue.


Lenders are more likely to finance a unit in a building with a high owner-occupancy rate. If most of the units are rentals, you may not be able to get a home loan from a lender. Absentee landlords may not be as interested as owner-occupants in keeping the buildings and grounds well maintained. Homebuyers will want to carefully consider whether or not to buy a condo in a building with more renters than owner-occupants.


Rental policies vary by the condo association. Some condominium association rules do not allow units to be rented. Some rules require rental leases to be a minimum term, such as one year. Other associations limit the number of rentals, so if that limit already is met, you may not be able to rent your unit at that time. Sometimes rentals are allowed for owners who purchased before a certain date, but not for those unit owners who purchased after that date. Unit owners are responsible if their tenants do not obey association rules or damage common areas.


The list above may seem lengthy and complex, but working with an experienced exclusive buyer agent and real estate attorney will reduce stress and provide condo home buyers with the guidance needed to make an informed decision about buying a condominium.


There is a difference between owning a condominium condo versus a single-family home. The biggest thing to remember is as an individual, you fully own from inside stud to inside stud of the inner perimeter of your condominium unit.


The definition of a condo or condominium is an individually owned living unit in a complex or building of other living units. The entirety of the units with all its land and amenities is shared with the other units as common areas.


Every condo complex is different it is important to know what your ownership includes when you buy a condo. Parking spots can either be owned individually (deeded with the unit) or assigned (owned by the association).


There can also be exclusive common areas such as decks and patios and even sometimes small yards. Exclusive common areas are meant to be used and enjoyed by one individual, but the cost of maintaining the area is shared by all the owners of the condominium complex. All of these questions can be determined by reading the master deed.


Whether you should purchase a condo or not is an individual decision. There is no right or wrong. But do you homework so if you do buy a condominium in Massachusetts you are making an informed decision


When purchasing a condo it is important you reserve the right to have a period of time to review the condominium documents. This is a big part of how to buy a condo for success. It is different from buying a single family home.


The Declaration of Trust is the document that sets the complex as an entity and the governing of the condominium usually thru a board of trustees and a home owners association. It is the legal documention forming the condomium as set forth by Massachusetts General Law, Chapter 183.


There are rules and regulations you must abide by when you buy a condo. The rules and regulations can vary from complex to complex. Most rules and regulations will discuss pets, parking, use of common areas and more.


To borrow from a famous phrase, not all condominiums are created equally. Some condominiums are very well run; some are quite poorly run and underfunded. Buyers interested in purchasing a condominium unit must do their homework: not only about the condition of the individual unit they are interested in purchasing, but on the financial health and governance of the condominium as a whole. Remember, you are buying into the entire project as much as you are the unit, and your decision will impact your daily living and your ability to re-sell.


We will also build in provisions into your purchase and sale agreement to protect you in case there are unanticipated or undisclosed issues with the condominium which affect your willingness to move forward with the transaction. Happy condo hunting!


Borrowing money to purchase a home is a complex process. While working through the home buying process you will need to at least involve a mortgage broker/bank/lender, Title Company and an appraisal company. Buying a home is the biggest purchase you will make in your lifetime.


Before signing any legal documents or contracts an attorney should be consulted to review the documents. Consult an attorney throughout the home buying process to ensure all deadlines and requirements are met in order to reach the final purchase stage.


Learn about protecting your investment and understanding the special nature of condo ownership. Our classes and discounts can make living out your dream a little easier. Scroll down for a complete list of our scheduled condo owner classes. This FREE class fulfills the Boston Home Center's Financial Assistance Program requirement for condo buyers.


If you are buying or selling property with a septic system installed, an inspection of the system may be part of the process. Certain types of ownership changes have different requirements. Learn what your requirements and rights are.


Condominiums are much different than single family properties. It is useful for buyers to understand those differences before purchasing a condo unit. This blog provides MA condo definition for buyers.


Condominium is a type of land ownership. Condominiums contain 2 or more units, with the interiors belonging to specific owners. Unit owners have joint ownership in shared spaces. Certain areas, such as patios, may be considered common space but granted to a specific owner for exclusive right to use. A master deed details the ownership structure and other relevant information on the entire complex. A unit deed offers information on a specific unit. Buyers should see both before buying a unit.


The style of a property does not identify it as a condominium. Condos come in vary in style. Some are converted multi-family buildings and others are extensive complexes encompassing multiple buildings. The following are a few common condo styles.


A document called the By-Laws outlines the condo management procedures. It is normally filed into public record with the master deed. It specifies the structure and tasks of the Trustees. Their roles often include collecting condo fees, enforcing rules and regulations, and managing the budget. Trustees might involve a professional management company to assist with these tasks. Yearly meetings are held to offer unit owners input and to review finances and other matters.


Most condos have a monthly fee to cover shared expenses. A certain portion is deposited into a reserve and saved for extensive maintenance issues. Fees may go up or down based on the condominium budget and planned expenses. If the funds do not cover expenses, unit owners might incur a special assessment.


Local real estate professionals can help buyers compare different condominium complexes. Buyers must also consider having a real estate attorney review and explain condo paperwork. By understanding the details on condos, buyers can make more educated investments. This article on MA condo definition for buyers was prepared by Peter DaMore at Law Offices of Peter T. DaMore Jr. and is intended only as an overview. Contact Peter at 781-229-7900 or pdamore@ptdlaw.com for facts on a specific complex. 041b061a72


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