If you are purchasing a condominium, you want to be certain the property is in good condition. Hiring a qualified inspector to scrutinize the condo makes sense. Still, because the property is in a multi-unit building, inspections of condos are different than those that involve single-family homes.
As a condo buyer, your concern must be both for your individual unit and the entire building. Knowing what paperwork to examine during a condo inspection may keep you from making a bad or unsafe investment.
What do sellers have to disclose?
According to Florida law, sellers of condos have an affirmative obligation to make certain disclosures to buyers. Specifically, at a minimum, the condo’s owner should give you the following:
- The dues and assessments for the condo
- The rules of the condo, including the articles of incorporation, bylaws, and declaration of condominium
- Current year-end financial information for the condo
While these disclosures may seem to have little bearing on the inspection, they are quite useful. After all, your inspector may read through required disclosures to ensure someone has performed the regular maintenance. The disclosures may also tell you the health of the reserve fund, which the condo board may use to make repairs or upgrades.
What information can you secure?
Apart from the seller’s disclosures, there are other pieces of information you may want to get your hands on. Asking for the minutes of condo association meetings may give you insight into building repairs and maintenance. Likewise, examining the notes of city inspectors may be beneficial.
Ultimately, if your paperwork inspection reveals a problem with the condo, you may be able to cancel your purchase agreement without losing your escrow money.