U.S. Foreclosure Filings Jump 30 Percent in February


Foreclosure filings in the U.S. climbed 30 percent in February from a year earlier as the worsening economy thwarted efforts by the government and lenders to prevent homeowners from losing property.


Avoid Pitfalls When Leasing Condo Roof Space to Wireless Providers

In these challenging economic times, some condo associations are stretched to think of new ways to offset dwindling assessments. One potentially lucrative option is to lease rooftop space for antenna installation. The proliferation of cell phones, broadband, paging, wireless Web, and related technologies has driven the demand for wireless companies to increase their coverage areas and data transmission capacities.


Assessing Liability for Water Damage Caused by Leaky Roof

Q Due to a leaking roof, rainwater entered the building and caused damage to a condo member's unit. As is typical, the master deed of our condo association requires the association to maintain the roof and other common elements, and requires condo members to maintain the interior of the units.


President of Alternate Association Can’t Sue

Facts: A property owner wanted to profit from his land by establishing a common interest development. He subdivided his land into 16 lots and a large common area. He built homes on six of the lots, sold five of them, and kept one house for himself. The community was governed by an association in name only. There were no formal meetings from 1980 through 1997, and the original property owner acted informally on the association's behalf.


Use Community Volunteers to Boost Spirit and Trim Costs


As the number of foreclosures and communities experiencing budget constraints rises across the country, many associations are taking a close look at how they can manage their community in an efficient and cost-effective manner. Some have been forced to increase assessments and cut back on services provided.


Management Company’s President Not Served Properly

Facts: A member sued her condo association and the president of its management company for imposing an allegedly invalid assessment on its members. According to the member, this assessment violated the governing documents and led to the illegal attempted foreclosure on her home.


Allowing Smoking in Common Areas May Invite Nuisance Claims


As nonsmokers become more assertive about their right not to breathe secondhand smoke, there has been increasing litigation over the issue of smoking in condominiums.

A recent California case is an example of this, and it may push boards to consider eliminating smoking in the common areas of condominium communities. Although the case involves an apartment complex, there are similarities with how smoking in condominiums has been litigated—and will continue to be litigated.


Association Not Required to Give Member Insurance Proceeds

Facts: A water leak developed directly above a member's condominium. The member permitted a restoration company into his condo to dry the carpet and an environmental inspection group to inspect the premises. The inspection results showed that the member's condo contained visible microbial growth on the closet and bathroom walls. The association then asked the member to move from his condo so the remediation could be performed. The member denied that his condo had any mold and refused to vacate unless the association paid his relocation expenses.


Member Liable for Balcony Repairs

Facts: In response to observations of water damage to a condominium building's balconies, an association hired consultants to inspect the building's waterproofing systems as well as the decks and balconies.


Colorado Association and Parents at Odds Over Flag Display

When their son was deployed to Iraq, members installed a flagpole outside their home to fly the American flag. Both federal and Colorado law guarantee residents the right to display the American flag, but allow restrictions on the method and size. Federal law says nothing about flagpoles, while state law allows homeowners associations to regulate…