M.W. from Fairfield County, Connecticut writes:
Dear Mister Condo,
Mister Condo replies:
M.W., as long as the rules for levying and collecting the Special Assessment as outlined in the governing documents are followed, I don’t see why the Board cannot begin collecting ahead of time. It is unusual for the assessment to be levied that far in advance but, perhaps, the Board has doubts about the owners to pay the assessment and they need to see if all owners will pay before committing to the project. In many cases, the contractor performing the work requires a deposit to being, payment along the way at critical milestones, and at job completion. The association would want to have the money readily available to meet those requirements. An HOA loan might be a better solution if homeowners are not willing to part with their money in advance but that would cost the members more in the long run. As long as the money is set aside in a separate account for the project requiring the Special Assessment and spent only in accordance with that project, they may have the right to collect the money in advance. Of course, all funds must be fully accounted for and any excess collected must be returned to owners at the end of the project. All the best.