Meeting Notice Requirements for Condo Board and Owner Meetings - AI Has it Wrong

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I recently asked ChatGPT what the IL Condo Act says about meeting notices, and the response was alarmingly incorrect. AI says that the board is not required to provide notice to owners when a board meeting is to be held. The IL Condo Act states otherwise.

Here are the requirements for noticing different types of association meetings:

Board Meetings - 48 hours prior

The IL Condo Act states the following:

"notice of every meeting of the board of managers shall be
posted in entranceways, elevators, or other conspicuous places
in the condominium at least 48 hours prior to the meeting of the
board of managers except where there is no common entranceway
for 7 or more units, the board of managers may designate one or
more locations in the proximity of these units where the notices
of meetings shall be posted; that notice of every meeting of the
board of managers shall also be given at least 48 hours prior to
the meeting, or such longer notice as this Act may separately
require, to: (i) each unit owner who has provided the association
with written authorization to conduct business by acceptable
technological means, and (ii) to the extent that the condominium
instruments of an association require, to each other unit owner,
as required by subsection (f) of Section 18.8, by mail or delivery,
and that no other notice of a meeting of the board of managers
need be given to any unit owner."

Owner Meetings - 10 days prior

  • Elections
  • Budget Approval
  • Board Vote on Rules & Regulations
  • Owner votes on any items that require an owner vote, including Amendments and the items listed below
    • merger or consolidation of the association;
    • sale, lease, exchange, or other disposition (excluding the
      mortgage or pledge) of all, or substantially all of the property and
      assets of the association;
    • the purchase or sale of land or of units on behalf of all unit

It's always best to consult an expert or turn to the source (the IL Condo Act, your Declaration and Bylaws) to ensure your board is following proper protocol for notices. 

Charges Must Be Properly Applied to Be Enforceable - How to Properly Assess Owners

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Condo associations often apply charges to owner accounts beyond regular monthly assessments.  Examples include fines, charges for expenses related to limited common elements, or chargebacks for damage to common elements caused by a unit owner.

In order for the board to ensure that all charges to an owner's account are legally enforceable, they must be properly applied. The association's governing documents and IL condo law will dictate proper processes for different types of charges.

Read about different types of charges that may be imposed and how to properly apply them here.

Is Your Condo or HOA on the Fannie Mae Unavailable List?

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In June 2022, a 12-story beachfront condominium in Surfside, Florida, partially collapsed, killing nearly 100 people. It is considered one of the deadliest building collapses in US history.

Upon further investigation, it was determined that a combination of factors, including design/construction deficiencies, building deterioration, and insufficient maintenance/repairs, caused the collapse.

In response, The Federal National Mortgage Association (known as FNMA or Fannie Mae) and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (known as FHLMC or Freddie Mac) created new requirements impacting condo associations.

Fannie Mae maintains a list of “unavailable” properties with issues involving environmental hazards, title issues, structural problems, and/or other issues that would affect the safety, soundness, or marketability of the property. Properties on the unavailable list are ineligible for Fannie Mae financing and lending.

Learn more here.

"Must have" rules and restrictions

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When drafting an amendment to a declaration or to rules and regulations, board members or management will often say, "We must include this restriction," when that isn't necessarily the case. But then, what restrictions are absolutely necessary?

Check out this list of "must have" rules and restrictions.

Quick Tips for Board Meetings

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Here are 5 quick tips to help board members navigate board meetings:

  1. The purpose of a board meeeting is for the board to conduct business. Board meetings do not need to become owner forums - create an agenda and stick to the items of business that require a board vote.
  2. Meetings should be scheduled according to what works for the majority of the board. The board is not required to schedule meetings around non-board owners' availability.
  3. Try aiming for a daytime hour if you want to have a productive meeting. People are burnt out by the end of the day and this affects their engagement.
  4. Conduct your meeting virtually to make it easy for board members to participate. You can use a free Zoom account which has the added bonus of limiting the meeting to 40 minutes.
  5. Ratify any emergency decisions made in between meetings at the next board meeeting. Section 18(a)(21) has been added to the IL Condo Act requiring notice to unit owners within 7 business days of an emergency decision made on behalf of the association, but the action must also be recorded at a board meeting.

Being intentional about your meetings can alleviate a lot of stress for the board.