P.M. from New Haven County writes:
Dear Mister Condo,
I have a problem with my upstairs neighbor who is currently being fined $20 per day for non-compliance of the condo Bylaws. Two independent water testing studies have shown that repeated leaks into my condo are the result of eroding balcony doors and defective flashing underneath the sliding doors in his unit. The rules and bylaws dictate that thresholds are unit owner’s responsibilities but the neighbor is refuting the evidence blaming his terrace as the source of water entry. I have tenants in the condo who are tired of its leaking state and are threatening to leave. I had one other tenant leave because it has been ongoing since 2005. Now the source of the leaks is established. What happens next? I have suffered financial loss, stress and still he refuses to fix his problem. What do I have to do now that the fines have been implemented? This could go on indefinitely.
Mister Condo replies:
P.M., my best advice to you is to hire an attorney and sue the unit owner for not abiding by the by-laws of the condominium. You may be able to handle the lawsuit on your own in small claims court depending on the value of the damages you will be claiming. I strongly suggest you consult with an attorney as soon as possible to discuss your legal options. From what you have stated, you will very likely prevail and you may even be able to include your attorney fees in your lawsuit. If you simply wait for this unit owner to fix the problem on his own, I think you will be disappointed because, as you state, this problem had been ongoing since 2005. I certainly wouldn’t allow another 8 years to go by waiting for the owner to take corrective action. Good luck.