F.K. from New Haven County writes:
Dear Mister Condo,
Owners are renting for less than the required time period. How can we enforce the condo rules?
Mister Condo replies:
F.K., well this one might seem kind of obvious but your by-laws and rules should spell out what happens when a unit owner doesn’t follow the rules. There is usually a summons to appear before the Board, followed by a fine, followed by legal action for repeated offenses. This is where your association attorney can step in and be a real help to the Board. Once the attorney reviews the case, a lawsuit against the offending owner will likely be drawn up and filed with the courts. The association will seek a cease and desist order against the unit owner making the improper rental agreements and the Board should seek legal damages from the unit owner who isn’t following the rules. The underlying question is what is the Association’s goal in bringing this action? It should be to halt the improper rental of the unit. If you go into the suit just seeking damages without trying to halt the improper rental of the unit, you are likely to see this offense repeated again. My advice is to consult with a community association attorney and take action against the offending unit owner. My guess is the association will prevail and the unit owner will play fairly moving forward. Good luck!