In 2017, the Minnesota legislature made several changes to the Minnesota Common Interest Ownership Act, Minn. Stat. 515B ("MCIOA"), the law governing most homeowner associations in Minnesota. One of these changes requires that associations adopt and distribute a formal Preventative Maintenance Plan ("PMP") by January 1, 2019. For more information on the specifics of these Plans, see our previous post about Preventative Maintenance Plans.
During the last legislative session, the Minnesota legislature made two significant changes to the Minnesota Common Interest Ownership Act, Minn. Stat. § 515B ("MCIOA") that will affect all common interest communities subject to that law. These changes, which have been signed into law by Governor Dayton, affect community associations' maintenance responsibilities and rights to bring construction defect lawsuits. This blog post summarizes these changes.
If you live in a condominium or townhome in Minnesota, you are likely part of a homeowners' association. Homeowners' associations help protect the investments of the members and community by establishing and enforcing rules and regulations. They also make sure that the shared areas are maintained and upgraded as needed. Members pay a fee to ensure these tasks are carried out as promised.
Homeowner associations often need to enter contracts to undertake construction work or other improvements that will affect all members of a homeowner association. Unfortunately, sometimes contracts are approved without careful review and contractors who are unqualified or unlicensed are hired. Associations should carefully review all contracts they intend to enter, giving it the same amount of exceptional care that would be required for a for profit corporation. Here are some basic guidelines for protecting your homeowner association when contracted work is required.
The Minnesota Common Interest Ownership Act (Minnesota Statute § 515B), commonly referred to as MCIOA, is a Minnesota state law that governs the operation of condominium associations and other common interest communities. MCIOA provides legal authority to address issues that frequently affect common interest communities.
A "common-interest community" is one in which you buy an individual unit but have access to shared facilities. They include condominiums, townhomes, coops, and other housing developments comprised of individually owned units, in addition to shared facilities and common areas. In a common-interest community, you pay an annual assessment to cover the upkeep of the shared facilities and common areas. The annual assessment may also cover other services such as lawn care, snow removal, property insurance, and television and internet service.