Friday, July 31, 2009

Quality Building Award

After the posting on this blog several months ago about the builder who tried to sell a condominium unit without plumbing fixtures and appliances, and after this KSL story about Ivory Homes' installation of a fence around a yard without including a gate, I'm thinking I should start giving out "Quality Building Awards."

The first recipient is Ivory Homes, who responded to the woman's complaint by blaming her and her Realtor for the omission of a gate. According to their spokesperson Nate Parker:
"Paula had a Realtor acting as the buyer's agent for the transaction. The buyer's agent has the fiduciary responsibility to review paperwork to ensure that it represents the buyers' wishes."

I've reviewed Ivory Homes' standard paperwork and am quite certain that if anyone read it and understood it, they'd realize that it wouldn't represent any intelligent buyer's wishes. Of course that's only my opinion.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

White is the New Green

I've seen many articles over the past several months, and several in the last couple of weeks, including this article in the New York Times, all of which discuss the energy advantages to a white, as opposed to the traditional black, roof.

If your association is facing a re-roofing project, you should look into the potential advantages of white roofing over black. There may even be tax advantages in choosing to go with white.

Similarly, if your architectural/design guidelines deal with roofing colors, you might want to add white as an option. (Along with getting rid of the clothesline, solar panel and awning prohibitions.)

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Vote for Julie!

Members of the Utah Chapter of the Community Associations Institute should have recently received ballots for the upcoming Board election; those of you who know Julie Ladle probably ought to take note that she's a candidate. If you know her, you'll support her, and she'd appreciate your support.

It's not looking like it will be a tight election, but as Al Franken would tell you, you can't take anything for granted.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Local Home Sales are Also on the Rise

Yesterday's post reported a national increase in home sales; today's Salt Lake Tribune has some reporting on the local market. Bottom line: the same statistics are not kept on a local basis, but sales are up here based upon various sources of information. also has its own story, using different sources, here.

Monday, July 27, 2009

New Home Sales Increase

New home sales are up sharply, and well above what was expected, according to a Commerce Department report released today, and reported here, in the New York Times. Sales are still way down from last year, and some economists doubt the trend will continue, but we can hope...

Friday, July 17, 2009

Transfer Fees Exposed!

I'm out of the office this week, presenting to the Utah State Bar on "Utah Community Association Law: Past, Present and Future," and my attention was just drawn to an article on, regarding transfer fees. The article correctly suggests that
If you plan on buying a home, insist that your title company provide you with a copy of all the Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions tied to the house. Comb through those documents. If you see a transfer fee on the home you want to buy, either negotiate to buy the house for less, demand that the transfer fee be removed or walk away.

My only dispute with this statement is that not all transfer fees are created equally. When you review the C,C & R's, look to where the fees go; if they go to the community association in which you live, for clearly designated purposes, they may be to your ultimate advantage. If they go to the developer's bank account, they are clearly not to your advantage and (IMHO) may, in fact, be illegal.

I hope to talk to the reporter on this story regarding the potential benefits of transfer fees and the possible illegality of the self-serving version of such fees; check this site for updates and links, if they are warranted.