Condex concerns - esp in Massachusetts
I'm looking for a 55+ condo development but I ran across a condEX development. I haven't read up on all the HOA docs, but from what I understand there are no common areas and no reserves (which is what a condO has). The HOA fee is less than half of a traditional condo fee. Condexes are not typical around here at all.
My whole idea about downsizing a la 55+ is to reduce work and responsibility. Yes, the HOA will cover landscaping and snowplowing, but its not always that simple.
If something that is traditionally "common" in a condo should fail or need capital replacement (septic, roof, wood deck, porch, foundation, gutters, yada yada...), I like that such coverage and ownership of the problem would come out of the reserves and condo association and is shared among all the condo owners. But on the other hand, if a different building than mine has a problem, then I like the CONDEX idea that it is not my responsibility. (cake and eat it too...LOL)
I can't find any statutes or documentation about condexes or HOAs in my state (massachusetts). But CONDOs are well understood and have plenty of consumer protections I'm sure. What if there are issues with other side neighbor? What if there are issues with the whole complex (about 16 units total)? e.g. what if everyone lets their grass become crabgrass or dandelions? a traditional condo has professional landscapers and usually (around here at this price point) are usually nicely manicured and landscaped. In a regular street I guess such issues can happen too, but you are not so close together. (I'm used to my 1.5 acre wooded lot, so these close quarters are going to be interesting for me...condex or condo.).
And there is no master insurance policy. Just a regular homeowners policy. I bet the ins. companies aren't thrilled with shared risk with another building occupant not involved in the policy (smokers? etc.). That will probably cost me more.
Otherwise, the complex is appealing. decent size, location, price (after negotiation hopefully), brand new.
It seems like the HOA is going to be (at least start off) laid back and not strict -- which can be good or bad depending on the issue. But these things can change over time.
Can anybody offer anything one way or the other about condEX living?
It took me years to decide to move to a condo, now this...
sorry for rambling...lots on my mind.