Does The Condo Board Have The Right to Interview a Buyer?

condo boardAlthough condominiums have fewer tools than do cooperatives in controlling their residents, they do have “the right of first refusal” when it comes to the sale of any unit in the building. This right is very rarely exercised, primarily because most condos lack the funds to buy at today’s market rates, but if the board has serious concerns about a potential buyer, it has the right to buy the unit under the same terms to keep that buyer out.

A condo board is well within its rights to request an interview with any potential buyer to meet him or her, to see if he or she fits in well with the community, and to assess whether there are any glaring financial or personality issues.

As a potential buyer, it behooves you to meet your new board to give you the same peace of mind that they are seeking: that you feel comfortable spending a good part of your time in their midst over the coming years.

Because condos have less leverage over defaulting owners than do co-ops, they have good reason to be vigilant about screening incoming owners to be sure they can afford to live there, and that they intend to follow the bylaws, rules, and regulations of the condo. Once you are living in the building, you may decide to join the board yourself and help keep it running smoothly. Standing in a board’s shoes, you are likely to agree that interviewing potential new buyers is a wise idea.

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