Condo Advisor: Calculation of appraisal increases is governed by law

Q. I live in a small condominium association and assessment increases are calculated per percentage unit of the annual budget. We have one of the largest units in the association and we already pay one of the highest dues. Is it possible for a condominium board to raise appraisals by a fixed amount per month (ie $100) for all unit owners or adopt a special appraisal at a fixed amount where everyone pays the same (ie $1200? )? Why should percentage ownership be used when we all benefit from the same roof, for example?

A. The condominium regime is governed by public deed and bylaws, as well as by the Condominium Law. A fundamental aspect of finances in a condominium regime is that the units are responsible for their proportional share of everything, including the budget and special contributions, which means that the units must pay their percentage of participation in the budget and the contributions specials. Simply put, that is the law.

There is an exception for user charges in most condominium declarations that allow a condominium board to assess a user charge equally for each unit, such as a rental fee for a party room or mass internet or cost of basic cable; otherwise, unit percentage is the appropriate method for calculating appraisal increases.

Q. I own a unit in a condominium association and recently requested to inspect two documents; a copy of the approved minutes of a recent board meeting and the sign-in sheet from that same board meeting. I was told there would be a $20 fee to complete each application which will be included on my appraisal bill. Is the board allowed to charge for those items?

A. Document requests by unit owners are governed by section 19 of the Condominium Law. Under section 19(a)(4), unit owners have the right to inspect and obtain a copy of the minutes of all meetings of the association and board of directors for the immediately preceding seven years; however, unit owners are not entitled to a copy of the sign-in sheets for board meetings, as it is not a section 19 listed document that unit owners are entitled to.

As for the charges for obtaining requests for documents, section 19(f) of the Condominium Law establishes that the actual cost to the association of retrieving and making available the requested records for inspection and examination may be charged by the association. to the requesting member. In addition, the requesting member may be charged the association for the actual cost of reproducing the records. If $20 reflects the actual cost of retrieving and copying the records, the requesting owner may be charged.

Typically, most associations do not charge unit owners for producing a copy of board meeting minutes, and, in fact, many associations post approved board meeting minutes on secure association websites. association or management company.

Q. I live in a 100+ unit townhouse association and our annual budget is over $100,000 a year. Discuss what is the applicable statute that governs our association and what authority would govern if the owner or association is responsible for maintaining, repairing, and replacing landscaping on townhome lots.

A. Unless a townhouse association has expressly submitted to the terms of the Condominium Act through its declaration, townhouse associations are not condominium associations, but are considered community associations of common interest. The Communities of Common Interest Association Act (ICCAT) applies to all communities of common interest unless the association is exempt. A community common interest association organized under Illinois nonprofit law that has fewer than 10 units or an annual budget of $100,000 or less is exempt from ICCAT. However, a townhome association of more than 100 units with an annual budget of more than $100,000 is subject to ICCAT.

The obligation to maintain, repair and replace landscaping in a community of common interest is governed by the declaration and bylaws, not by ICCAT.

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