L.M. from Cuyahoga County, Ohio writes:
Dear Mister Condo,
We have a new board president who has not been actually elected as yet. She took over when the former had to resign for health issues. She has not a clue about anything, period. I had a complaint about a new condo owner, who I suspect was never given the rules and regulations. I notified our new board president after I left a note on the patio for the new resident. I was told that was not allowed and I should put in writing to the board. I did this and the board president hand delivered my complaint to that resident which I and many others here believe was out of line. Now that person knows where I live and where my car is parked. I, of course, asked why it was handled in that manner without my permission. Was that handled properly? Thank you for your time.
Mister Condo replies:
L.M., I am sorry that your new resident didn’t follow the rules which lead to your new Board President using your letter to alert the new resident of the violation. As you have described, there is a lot of “new” going on here so let’s see if we can use this experience as a teaching moment and get past what was done wrong. First off, let’s not dump on the volunteer Board member who has taken on the duty of association president. She may not have been elected to the office but she was elected to the Board, which makes her eligible to be the President. She stepped up when asked not only to serve but to also lead the Board. This is a big role and your association would not function properly without someone in the role. So instead of pointing out that “she has not a clue about anything”, let’s thank her for her service and understand that doing the job well requires training and practice. As for the matter of your complaint, why did you leave a note on the new unit owner’s patio? Have you been empowered to enforce the rules and regulations at your association? The correct method is to contact either the Property Manager or the Board with your complaint. You did inform the new President and the President acted, albeit in an unconventional manner. Complaints against fellow unit owners are records of the association and, as such, are open to be inspected by any association member. However, the citation of a violation should come from the Board or Property Manager. Your note to the President should not have been used. Additionally, whatever your governing documents detail for rules enforcement is what should be used. My guess is they call for a letter or warning to the unit owner followed by a request to appear before the Board to answer to the violation followed by a fine or written warning. The NEW Board President will learn this and the NEW unit owner will likely pay more attention to the rules moving forward. Hopefully, you and your fellow unit owners can live together blissfully moving forward. All the best!