By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities
Ah, the condo life. Affordable, low-maintenance, carefree living, right?
Unfortunately, not for many condo residents. Multifamily housing can be challenging and expensive to manage well, particularly as the structure begins to show its age.
Today I’m sharing a video report of Casablanca Condominiums in Las Vegas. The 40-year old building is home to dozens of older adults (age 55+). In August an electrical fire resulted in no power or air conditioning for 10 unit owners.
The electrical system is so old that replacement parts are no longer available. It remains to be seen whether the association has a reserve fund to cover the cost of replacement and upgrades. Chances are, the association lacks the funds, or the matter would have been addressed weeks ago.
With an old electrical system, you would think the threat of another fire would prompt more urgency.
Four years ago, Casablanca Condo Association was embroiled in a bitter conflict for control of its board, according to this article in the Las Vegas Sun. At that time, the management agent also resigned.
It appears the association has a new board, and may not have a professional manager.
City officials in Las Vegas appear unwilling to assist in any way. As usual, the local government takes a hands-off approach when it comes to HOA issues, until the situation becomes so dire that they must step in and do something.
So, is living in a hot condo without power – or being displaced to another vacant unit – while waiting weeks or months for your condo association to arrange for repairs your idea of carefree living?
Just wait until condo owners get the bill for the work that must be done. I sense a rather expensive special assessment in the near future.
I-Team: Seniors living without power, HOA cites lack of electrical parts
By Vanessa Murphy | firstname.lastname@example.org, Bill Roe
There’s no power, no air conditioning, and no solution in sight for a group of seniors at the Casablanca Condominiums in Las Vegas. The I-Team’s Vanessa Murphy discovered the tenants have been dealing with these issues since a fire on Aug.13.
“No power, no nothing,” longtime resident Arlene Christensen said.
For more than a month during the hot summer days, residents in 10 units of the 55 plus living community had to live without air conditioning.
“I kind of thought seniors were special,” said Christensen.”
Christensen and many residents like her have been displaced because of the issues.
“This is the meter that blew out,” said Mary Ann Berry, Board Director for the Casablanca Condominiums.
The Homeowners Association has been scrambling to fix the electrical damage caused by the fire.
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