Condo document and due diligence

Loft – Market House in downtown St. Paul

People who buy condos and townhouses get to review condo documents for ten days before they make a final decision on their purchase. It is a state law in Minnesota and it is called the ten-day recission period.

The ten-day recision period starts after the buyer has received all of the documents.

I am familiar with the condo rules for many condo associations. I am surprised by how often buyers do not read most of the documents. They miss the surprises and the occasional gotcha.

The buyer has the contact information for someone in the association who can answer questions. It isn’t a good idea for real estate agents to answer questions about the documents. I have had clients get advice from their attorney.

Reading and understanding condominium documents are part of the buyer’s due diligence. Condo associations have to show their budgets and current financial status and if there are any pending lawsuits against them.

Condo rules can include rental and pet restrictions and parking rules. I know of one association that prohibits all pets except for goldfish and one that allows all pers except birds.

There are rules about the placement of potted plants and sometimes rules about garage doors that have to be kept closed. Some condo associations have tons of rules and others have few.

Do your own homework and read everything before making a final commitment.

Pro tip – There is one local management company that is the reason why I would not live in some of the condo buildings. I think it is always a good idea to talk to the representative from the management company and directly to someone on the board of directors for the association.

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