How to Begin Your Condo Remodel Process

How to Begin Your Condo Remodel ProcessCondo remodels can be a tricky business. In technical respects, you have ownership of your unit. You are the one paying taxes on it, after all. When it comes to remodeling, however, your ability to modify does have its restrictions.

It is often a fine line between what you can do in a condo remodel and what you're actually allowed to do in a condo remodel. Things like putting in a extra window or adding a jacuzzi out on your deck may require certain permissions. "Just go ahead and do it" can, unfortunately, leave you in a heap of trouble down the line. Here's how to do the prep work for your condo remodel process, according to Deseret News, to ensure you've got the green light.

Start by reviewing the Condo Declaration

Before beginning your condo renovation, get a hold of your condo's Declaration (and other restrictive covenants - bylaws, rules & regulations, etc.). This should detail all rules that are laid out for your condo asscoiation already. It will detail what special permissions you'll need and what can be altered in the unit.

Additionally, it will lay out the common elements of the condo which are covered by the homeowner's association - usually, this means things like the lobby, halls, front doors, roof, windows, and balconies. These elements can usually only be altered upon common consent.

Ask questions in writing

It is important to have a written document of all approvals and rejections that occur. If you have questions about the restrictive covenants or if something does not appear to be covered on the document, make sure you conduct your negotiations in a written format. This will help when dealing with any potential legal agreements down the line.

Hire an accomplished contractor

Before you ask for approval, hire a contractor for a complete consultation. They will have knowledge of the actual scope and intent of your personal ventures and will be able to give you a clear understanding of what it is that your project will entail. If at all possible, have them mock up drawings detailing the final result. This knowledge will best help you with your next step.

Get obvious approval

Get your planning and permissions completely lined up before you go knocking down walls. Communicate with the condo association board about your specific intent with your projects, armed with the knowledge (and drawings) your contractor has appointed you. Check whether or not the association will require a deposit to cover potential common area damage, or if mid-job inspections are required.

Make arrangements prior to the work day

Will you need to block off an area for your workers to park? Will the freight elevator be needed? Does security need to be notified? Make sure you've done some legwork to allow the actual remodel to go smoothly. Also be sure to check with your contractors to see if any electrical or plumbing systems will have to be shut off during the work to notify the residents well ahead of the outage.

Be nice to your neighbors

While your neighbors don't HAVE to be notified of the work you're doing, be considerate to avoid problems. Let them know when work will be taking place to ensure you will not be unknowingly disturbing them, and then thank them at the end of the work cycle for their patience.

Looking to remodel your condo and need some help? We'll be happy to point you in the right direction. Don't hesitate to send us an email or give us a call!

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