D.J. from Hartford County writes:
Dear Mister Condo,
I would like to know how to deal with a management company that has not renewed their license through the state of CT. We have a shady management company that has not informed any of the owners that they have not been licensed since January, 2015. We cannot go to the Board because the president is a tyrant that bullies the other senior tenants and board members. Other owners are afraid to speak up about unkempt building changes and the discouragement to have meetings about our high-rise condos. How do we get the other owners to fight back?
Mister Condo replies:
D.J., it is illegal for a management company to practice on our state without a license. The Department of Consumer Protection (DCP) is the keeper of the license records and also the enforcement division. You can simply visit their website at http://www.ct.gov/dcp/site/default.asp and follow the instructions to file a complaint online, via mail, or via phone call. I can’t guarantee what steps they will take to correct the situation because the DCP covers a wide array of services for state residents.
Let’s talk about some of the other issues you have mentioned, in particular, your Board President, who you have described as a tyrant. A condominium association is a democracy where the unit owners have the power of the vote to determine who is elected to the Board. There is no reason to continue to elect any Board member who does not serve the other unit owners. Next election cycle, simply vote this person off of the Board and your problem is solved. Of course, other unit owners need to agree with your opinion and they need to take that resolve with them to the Annual Meeting when the elections are held. Simply be sure that there are enough other good candidates ready and willing to serve.
There is no reason that a well-meaning Board cannot address your building issues. There should be no discouragement to discuss maintenance and upkeep of your high-rise condos. If your association has a healthy Reserve Fund, it may be time to tap into it and complete the repairs. If not, it may be time to talk about raising common fees, special assessments or taking out a community association loan to handle your repairs. Whatever the scenario, getting the discussion going is the critical first step to solving the problem. I wish you all the best in doing so.