A condominium offering plan should outline the details of the transaction and the building development, while also establishing the relationship between the unit owners, the board, and the sponsor. As offering plans can include several hundred pages of documentation, it’s essential to have an attorney look out for potential problems. It’s even more vital to have that attorney draft a customized offering plan, rather than a boilerplate offering plan that fails to address your particular needs.
What will your attorney look for in an offering plan? The New York State Attorney General’s office outlines a few key problem areas in condominium transactions. In these common areas of dispute, a buyer may notice that a seller’s promises don’t quite match up with the final product that was actually delivered.
- Unit Appliances and Amenities: The sponsor is obligated to provide any item promised in the offering plan. According to state regulations, the offering plan should contain the brand name, types, and model numbers of appliances to be installed, in order to help the buyer judge their quality. Offering plans often allow for the sponsor to substitute equal or better appliances.
- Landscaping: While many developments provide minimal landscaping, allowing buyers to upgrade it themselves, the regulations call for a detailed disclosure of the sponsor’s landscaping plans. The offering plan might detail how many trees will be planted, the type of tree, the installation of an underground watering system, and more.
- Frames: The offering plan should tell buyers how their homes are built. For example, low rise homes are usually framed with wood, but others are steel with concrete floors.
- Recreational Facilities: Will the building include any pools, tennis courts, or fitness rooms? The offering plan must include floor plans and elaborate on the equipment, space, and materials that will be used.
Buyers may also notice discrepancies in a building’s facade, common areas, and the overall quality of construction. The latter can be difficult to define, especially with so many different factors to consider. An attorney can investigate the matter to ensure the development matches the offering plan in terms of quality.
The Attorney General’s offices in most states are very strict in their regulations and have several requirements for those who wish to submit offering plans. Your attorney should know not only what you need to ensure acceptance by the Attorney General’s office, but also what it will take to protect your particular interests. Incomplete or inaccurate offering plans have been known to lead to disaster. Over the past several years, many developers and their individual principals have been sued by those who purchased condominium units and their boards of managers. To avoid the often staggering costs of a lawsuit or settlement, an offering plan must include provisions to protect a sponsor and its principals.
In summary, a well-thought-out condominium offering will safeguard the sponsor and the principals while avoiding a great expenditure of time, money, and stress. A skilled attorney will be able to prevent possible misunderstandings and discrepancies between the offering plan and the reality of the development. If you’re thinking about creating an offering plan for a condominium development in New York State or Florida, you should call Rosen Law. We will assess your situation and determine the best way to create an offering plan that protects you from litigation and other legal issues. Let us help you start an efficient and profitable development.