R.K. from Mercer County, New Jersey writes:
Dear Mister Condo,
I own a condo unit and live in it. The building has 3 floors and each floor has 4 units.
The adjoining walls are fire resistant. Every 5 years, the condos are inspected by the Department of Community Affairs (DCA). But the DCA site says that if:
1. the building section (or floor) contains not more than 4 units,
2. a given unit is owner occupied,
3. the adjoining walls are fire resistant, then the owner-occupied unit is exempt from the DCA inspection.
So, does my unit qualify for this exemption?
Mister Condo replies
R.K., my short answer is “maybe”. I am neither an expert in New Jersey DCA matters nor am I an attorney so please take my advice as friendly and not legal. For a legal opinion, consult with an attorney. From what you have described, your unit meets the criteria for the exemption. However, your condo association may have its own need for the inspection, including keeping the association’s insurance intact. In other words, just because the DCA may not require the inspection, your association just might. Also, between you and me, a 5-year inspection is probably in your best interest as it could uncover other problems that might otherwise go unnoticed. You can check with the DCA and you can check with your association but if the inspection isn’t terribly onerous, I think I would let them do it. All the best!