Condo Developer Used “Bait and Switch” Tactic to Sell Units

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M.S. from outside of Connecticut writes:

Dear Mister Condo,

What can I do if the builder has started to sell more condos to investors as rental units than what the by-laws that he created state? We bought the very first one in the community and the by-laws stated no more than 2 rentals per building would be permitted. Each building has 12 units and there are 6 buildings. Some of the building have as many as 5 rentals. Is it legal for him to just do as he wishes? Or should I get an attorney? My property values have gone down $50,000 from the original purchase price in just 6 years. This is worse than the apartment complex that I left to be a happy homeowner.

Mister Condo replies:

Developers are not immune from the rules and regulations of the association. However, during the period of time that the association is under developer control (like now) the rules can be modified following a fairly simple procedure that the developer controls. In other words, you might not have a leg to stand on with what the rules used to say and what they say now as long as the developer followed the proper procedures for changing the rules. I would most certainly consult with an attorney to see if you have a case against the developer as far as your particular unit goes. You were sold a unit with a set of stipulations that have since been changed and, had you known then, you might not have purchased the unit. Further, if you can demonstrate fraudulent intent on the part of the developer, you may be able to seek some personal relief. Only a local, qualified attorney can give you proper advice in this matter and I strongly urge you to contact one and see what relief you are entitled to. All the best!

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