Where Do Condominium Association Dues Go?

A condominium or homeowner’s association helps you deal with a lot of stressful issues as a group rather than alone. By Kat Velayo Greenberg

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Keeping a roof over your head can be a daunting prospect, what with all the little expenses that add up. There are some fees you just can’t escape: you’ve got to pay water and electricity bills every month, and if you live in a condo, there’s that pesky monthly payment for Condominium Association Dues.

While association dues seem like just one more annoying fee, they are actually a convenient lump sum of payments that you would have to make anyway if you lived on your own. Living with the support of a condominium or homeowner’s association helps you fund a lot of necessities as a group rather than alone. That support can be a huge load off your mind instead of the burden some people think it is!

What do typical condo association dues cover? We’ll break it down for you.

Property Management

Most condos are professionally managed by a company whose sole purpose is to make your life easier. Property managers take care of finding residents to fill available units, handling rental payments and paperwork, taking care of regular maintenance and dealing with unexpected issues as they come up.

The property management company is also there to execute the decisions made by the condo association board of directors elected by the homeowners.

Property Staff

Maintaining a property takes a lot of hard work, and managing multiple residences means a full-time staff to take care of the building so you don’t have to. There is usually an on-site property manager or a team of them, security guards, and maintenance and cleaning staff. Part of the dues goes to paying their salaries.

Maintenance of Common Areas

Imagine all the time and effort it takes to keep a back and front yard groomed, windows cleaned, and roof maintained so it doesn’t leak during the rainy season. These are just some headaches that come with living in a house.

In a condo, most of these things are taken care of by the association. While every resident is responsible for the care of their own home, condos often have amenities like pools, gyms, and other common areas like the lobby. Care and upkeep of these shared spaces are covered by the monthly dues.

Garbage Collection, Insurance, and Property Taxes

Every household must pay certain fees to remain in good standing with the government. Instead of paying these fees by yourself, the association takes a portion of the monthly dues and makes sure these are up-to-date and paid for the entire building.

Special Funds and Major Repairs

Different condos have different needs; your association dues help to cover those needs. Will the entire building need to be painted over the next two years to keep it looking fresh? Then a fund will be set up to cover the cost of the painting down the road. Was there a major storm that flooded the basement parking lot? Then the dues will cover repairing any flood damage.

Most of these are costs that you would have to pay whether you live in a condo or a single-family home. But at least with a condo association, you have help to cover these costs and a team of professionals to help you deal with any issues you may face as a homeowner.

At the end of the day, dues are just a way of contributing to your condo community and sharing your burdens with each other.

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