Revere, MA asked in Collections, Consumer Law and Real Estate Law for Massachusetts

Q: I owe 4 months condo fee and add late fees send me letter that is going to collection agency what action should I take

The condo association charge late fees from the last year plus 4 months condo I owe and I'm in hardship and selling the house What should I do ? Please any advice is great appreciate!

1 Lawyer Answer
Christopher Tolley
Christopher Tolley
  • Consumer Law Lawyer
  • Boston, MA
  • Licensed in Massachusetts

A: Most condominiums in Massachusetts have provisions for charging late fees, attorney's fees and expenses of collection. Six months of past due common area fees are a lien on the unit prior to any first mortgage. Because of this, and because Massachusetts cases have held that common area fees and costs of collection are similar to real estate taxes, condominium associations I have dealt with are not inclined to discount or waive common area fees or late fees.

However, here are some other possibilities. Many lenders pay delinquent common area fees in order to avoid the common area fees becoming a priority lien. Has your mortgage holder, if any, been notified of the delinquency and are they willing to pay? This might reduce your late fees. You might avoid having to pay the fees currently if your condominium association is willing to wait until you sell the unit and take the fees from the sale proceeds. Lastly, despite all the above, you should at least try speaking with the condominium trustees, explain your situation, and ask if they will give you a break.

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