On the start of a beautiful sunny spring day in 2018, a neighborly conversation moved quickly into a stressful talk about the poor treatment of the associations’ owners. From disrespectful attitudes and comments subjected upon the homeowners, to the once again, on going wrongful demand that a select group of owners pay, what can only be considered as an additional extortion. The old time mobster movies, referred to it as “protection money”. In this case, to protect a person’s home, health, and well being. And of course, to simply protect children and pets. Protection from the rain, mold, insects and rodents drawn to such wet and deteriorating conditions.
It still boggles the mind that any owner would be blackmailed into paying thousands of dollars just to have required and long overdue building maintenance done. It would seem that a minority of owners have continued to corrupt the system of owners’ rights as set by the Condominium Act and the State of New Jersey. To force a minority of owners to pay thousands of dollars. To force this minority of your neighbors to be made substandard to the rest of the homeowners. In fact to make them a disadvantaged subclass of homeowners.
This conversation came into being a few years ago and rears it’s ugly head once again. The question of why Burnt Tavern Manor Condominium Association is arbitrarily attempting to force 72 owners to pay for their own building repairs. Actually, that would be to say correctly, the Board of Directors and not the Association.
So, a related question, that became an off shoot of the above. “How much does the skylights cost, that the association finds it so necessary to force this cost onto the owners?” The question of stated repair responsibility, was previously touched upon in a previous posting, (view it here).
Since it’s an easy task to get the pricing of any building materials, by simply asking a supplier, it’s easy to understand the numbers. First, the existing skylights are measured on the inside. Next, they are also measured on the outside. Useful, since skylights installed 35 years ago, may no longer be made in the exact same size. So with the inside and outside measurements, it’s a simple call to the building materials supplier. Now, you can’t be responsible and just get one price quote. That might be the higher price possible and you want to know what a realistic price you can actually expect to pay. For those homeowners, not in the Twin Lakes area who have skylights, you should know, there are four units per building, out of the eight, that have skylights. These units each have four skylights each.
For reference, Marie Check, of Metro Associates, LLC, the property management company, commented at a board meeting in October of 2017, that some of the owners were facing a cost of $1800.00 per set of skylights.
Now back to the quotes. Out of multiple quotes, the skylights pricing maxed out at 1 @ $359.00 and 3 @ $470.00. The lesser prices, which happen to be with a more popular brand, came in at $367.00 and $417.00.
That works out to a range of $1,618.00 to $1,769.00 per condo. This ignores a yet cheaper brand, as it was not considered to have been quoted with the same quality and specifications.
Since every responsible association, is required to put money into reserves for future repairs, this is also an easy bit of simple math. Assuming there are qualified board members tracking pricing, the association would have put aside $48.50 per year for each of the 72 units. Assuming they had planned to delay proper roof maintenance to create an “all at once” need to replace skylights 35 years after.
Conversation with owners trying to get their roof repaired, due to excessive long term leaking, has reported demands from the property management and board of directors, for an astounding $900.00 per window. Just for the window, sitting on the ground, with possibly double that with the installation labor. Talking to contractors, of decades experience, wished they could charge such high amounts.
So, as the question was asked before, “Is the Twin Lakes area being targeted?”