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Peaceful Coexistence Between Owners and Renters in Condominiums

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By : Andy Asbury    99 or more times read
As a real estate agent in Minneapolis, Minnesota, I buy and sell condos on behalf of individual owners and sellers. As a result, I am never far from any tension to befall on a community of owners and renters. In many cases, owners want to keep all renters out of the buildings—to the dismay of investors who may be dependent on the rental income.

The beauty of contemporary condo communities is that usually there are written guidelines and policies in place to bring balance to the process. Meanwhile, property management companies and Home Owner Associations (HOAs) have the difficult job of enforcing them. Impartiality within those groups has become even more important during this economic downturn, which invariably makes the dynamic more volatile.

Overall, there are two schools of thought on how to maintain equilibrium. The first one is limiting the ratio of renter-occupied units relative to the total number of units in the building. In a common example, a maximum of 25 percent of all units might be eligible for renting. However, this ratio will vary considerably from one building to another. A good property management company if procured can advise a HOA what might be appropriate given the external market. On the plus side, having a ceiling limit on the number of renters gives owners peace of mind. There can only be so many renters to wreak havoc inside the building! To be fair, occasionally these fears are justified.

A second approach, one which I personally favor, focuses more on evaluation of individual renters once they are submitted as candidates. Criteria might include:

  • Criminal Background checks

  • Requirement of 12-month leases

  • Additional HOA-Required Addendums. For example, prospective tenants might be required to document they have read and have agreed to abide by the community’s Rules and Regulations.

  • Additional HOA Board Review and Approval. The Board might even go as far as summon tenants to appear before it for an informal interview before the tenants move in.

  • Adopt policies to ensure everyone is clear on the process and details are not overlooked.

The second model gives deserved allowance to renters who have solid incomes and credit histories. Ideally, this group would be rewarded with as many housing choices as possible.

The world is not ideal, but as a condo owner myself, I prefer a development occupied by great renters over one with vacant units. Vacant units can force foreclosures, having the indirect result of lowering everyone’s property values.

Many condo communities employ a mixture of these concepts and methods. If you are a condo owner, I recommend participating in the activities of your HOA in order to influence the debate. Job relocations and other life forces can mean your perspective will change quickly. Even so, you will want to wield influence.
Twin Cities Realtor and Article Writer Andy Asbury helps online home buyers find in-depth information onall Minneapolis condos and lofts via now. If you are an investor, Andy can help you find renters from all over the world who will pay top dollar for the best rented Minneapolis lofts and condos available.

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