Thursday, May 30th, 2013

Condo Building Maintenance Fees

Hoboken condo maintenance feesOh, the dreaded maintenance fees.  I get a lot of clients across New Jersey that ask me what is included in “maintenance fees.”  This is after their jaw drops to the ground once we tell them how much they are.  Most fears and shock are alleviated once we tell the prospective buyers what is included in that fee.

Along with your mortgage and taxes is the monthly maintenance fee, which is the third major expense when owning a condominium.  At the end of the day, your condo fees typically cover what is normally paid separately in fee simple ownership to an extent.

How are maintenance fees determined on Condo buildings:

Owning a condominium, the owner owns the interior of the unit and a percentage of common ownership.  Common ownership is based off of square footage of the interior in comparison to the entire buildings’ square footage.  Unlike a co-op, your maintenance fees in a condo building do not give you a “share” or “ownership” of the building.  Co-ops are typically much more expensive on the fee side, because you are actually buying into equity of the entire building.

If you own a Hoboken condo for instance, your fees will typically cover the following:

  1. Water: Common water is supplied to the building, however to heat the water, Hoboken condo owners are typically responsible for their own water heaters, which are normally carried over in a sale.  Water heaters are typically ran on natural gas, so the only expense to occur for the condo owner is on their natural gas bill.
  2. Master Insurance Policy: Your exterior walls are covered by the blanket insurance policy provided in this Master insurance policy.  For instance, if there is a water leak on the 25th floor of a building and it effects all units below it, your master insurance policy would cover it.  However, if the leak penetrates your ceiling and does interior damage to your unit, you are responsible for that by obtaining a separate “interior” insurance policy, which is fairly inexpensive.  Flood insurance, if building is in a flood zone, is also covered in your maintenance fees.
  3. Common Hallway Electric:  When you are walking in the middle of the night down your hallway, the light provided is ran off electricity provided by the homeowners association, and paid for in your monthly fees.
  4. Property Management: These guys handle all the bill paying for the maintenance in addition to taking care of common area cleaning, snow removal, etc.  .  If there is a problem in your unit, your property manager is who is to be alerted of any problems.  They are basically your 24/7 consierge.
  5. Funds to build reserve account: This is important although many disagree with it.  Included in your monthly fees are reserves.  Reserves will build an account that will handle most expenses due to the “unknown” building maintenance, such as a new roof, sidewalk repair, etc..
  6. Building amenities: If your building has amenities such as a gym, pool, PATH shuttle, etc, your costs are covered in your maintenance fees.

The following fees are fees associated with specific units in specific buildings:

  • Hudson Tea Building: 1 Bedroom 1 Bath, monthly fee of $406 per month.  Includes water, hot water, concierge, fitness center, community room, shuttle to and from the PATH.
  • Harborside Lofts: 2 bedroom 2 bathroom 1,812 Squre Feet:  Monthly fee of $1,100 covers heat and air conditioning, hot water, water, gas, internet, concierge service, fitness center, common roof deck, PATH shuttle.
  • Maxwell Place: 1 Bed 1 Full Baths 1,298 Sq. ft.  Monthly fee of $736 includes basic cable, internet, water, gas, 24 hour concierge, fitness center, pool, resident’s lounge, and PATH shuttle
  • 2 Constitution Court: 2 Bedrooms 2 Baths  1,164 Square Feet monthly fee of $719 includes water, concierge, fitness center, pool, and children’s play area.
  • W Hotel Residences: 3 bedroom 3.5 bathrooms 2,367 sq. ft, monthly fee of $1,682 includes water, hot water, heat, air conditioning, 24 hour concierge, doorman, valet parking, fitness center, and business center.

If you have any questions about any condo maintenance fees whether in Hoboken, Jersey City, or elsewhere, please give New Jersey Real Estate Guys a call and we will help you understand your investment.

We specialize in the following:

Hoboken Condos

Jersey City Condos

Weehawken Condos

Union City Condos

Suburb Condos