An association’s, and owners’, maintenance and insurance obligations are typically set forth in the declaration. The Declaration is also referred to as the “CC&R’s”, “Covenants”, and the “Declaration of Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions”. But have you ever tried reading a declaration to determine who has to fix what? If so, you will probably agree that simply reading the maintenance and insurance provisions of a declaration will not typically provide clear answers.
Oftentimes, provisions of the declaration must be cross-referenced and read in conjunction with one another. Additionally, statutes must be consulted and oftentimes maps for the community must be reviewed, before one can determine the maintenance or insurance obligation of a particular component in the community. This typically results in calls and emails to legal counsel for assistance with determining such obligations.
Rather than consulting legal counsel every time a maintenance or insurance question arises, some associations direct their attorneys to prepare maintenance and insurance charts to allow boards and managers the ability to look up the maintenance and insurance obligations of components in the community and ultimately save money.
A maintenance and insurance chart is exactly what it sounds like: a chart (table) that sets out in detail who (owner or association) is responsible for the maintenance and insurance of various components within the community. For example, the chart will set forth who is responsible for maintaining and insuring the drywalls, cabinets and light fixtures within a unit. Additionally, such chart will advise whether owners or association is responsible for maintaining and/or insuring components such as doors, windows, siding, and other exterior components of condominium and townhome units.
Prior to preparing a maintenance and insurance chart, the association’s legal counsel will look at several documents, including the association’s governing documents and plat maps. The attorney will also talk to the board and/or manager to determine if any specific problem areas exist in the community that require special attention. Finally, the attorney will either visit the community or look at the community using Google Maps (or similar platform) and become familiar with the community’s layout, recreational facilities, and any special, or out of the ordinary, features. This will allow your attorney to tailor the chart specifically for your community.
Once complete, these charts assist boards and community managers with answering questions concerning maintenance and insurance obligations for various components in their communities. This, in turn, reduces phone calls and emails to the association’s legal counsel and thereby reduces legal fees incurred by the association.
Maintenance and insurance charts may also be distributed to owners for reference when they are trying to figure out who is responsible for various maintenance obligations. As a result, owners will be able to obtain answers to their maintenance and insurance questions without having to call the board or community manager every time, thereby reducing calls to the board and community manager as well as conflicts concerning such obligations.
Should you have any additional questions about maintenance and insurance charts, please contact an Altitude attorney at (303) 432-9999 or at [email protected].