Well, you should be proud of yourself because you've answered part of your own question here. The mortgage lien and the association lien are 2 different entities. When you have a mortgage and you default on what you've agreed to pay (meaning you don't pay it), the mortgage company has spelled out ways in which they can take the property back from you because you didn't keep up your end of the bargain.
But, because condos are part of a larger group of people who have agreed to live together in the same building and abide by certain rules to maintain order and sanity, they also have the right to make a claim on your property if you don't abide by the rules. In this case, by not paying what you agreed you would pay.
The answer to your question would be found in the association documents you received when you bought the place. OR----an easier way to get your answer and work out a repayment plan to get you current is to make a phone call and see what you can work out with Gittleman. I'm sure they would like to help you get back on track! They don't want to take over your condo any more than you want to give it to them!!!
Each resident has to do their part. Good luck, Gabbi!!!! :)
The only person who knows the answer to your question is Gittleman. That said, because there is no mortgage you may want to find out if there are any additional liens on the property by having a title company do a title search for you for a couple hundred dollars. If Gittleman is the only lien or is in the first lien position, foreclosure may be a very attractive option to them.
One thing doesn't add up for me though - how does a $150K condo have a $2500 association fee. Call Gittleman and find out exactly how much you owe and for what - get an itemized ledger of your account with them. If there are large attorney's fees already assessed to the property, you may be well on your way to foreclosure.
Coldwell Banker Burnet
licensed MN Broker
If you are unable to pay the association dues and accumulated fees, you must take action to protect your equity. Contact a local real estate professional. An agent or an attorney may be successful in negotiating a settlement.
You say that you are in arrears about $8000, and that a lein was put on your condo in August. I would imagine that they have made attempts to contact you to work out a plan. Failure to begin a dialogue with the manager could result in legal notice of foreclosure. The ball really is in your court.
A condo in default is a burden on the association, they would rather see you bring your dues current than foreclose. You do not have to have an attorney represent you, but it would be a good idea to have someone look over what ever plan you present, or negotiate.
The worst case scenario would be that your condo would go into foreclosure, and someone could purchase what you paid $150,000 for a few months ago for the amount of the lein, taxes, and legal fees. You would have 180 days to redeem, but the hole keeps getting deeper the longer you delay.
Read the rules and talk to the property manager; check to see what your association fee covers. You will find it is really a fair cost in most cases. If you want to talk about this, call me and i will be glad to help you make a plan to get yourself out of this bind. Liz, 612-986-4105
But, really, you've got to act. Otherwise, your property could be seized and you could lose your $150,000 investment over $8,000 in condo fees. (I had a friend many years ago who had the same thing happen to him. In his case, he got into a dispute with the condo association and refused to pay. He actually owned two units in the building and the got both. The ultimate irony is that he was a lawyer. A very stubborn lawyer.)
I'm only guessing here, but the management company (and condo association) would probably really love to foreclose. Unlike a condo that might be upside down, they'd be making an immediate $142,000 profit on their actions.
Talk to a lawyer. I'm not a lawyer, so this isn't legal advice. Still, what you want to do is stop any further action as soon as possible. Then you want to make arrangements to pay the unpaid fees. You'll also probably find that they're sticking you with a lot of junk fees and so-called "legal" costs. You and your lawyer might be able to negotiate those down a bit. But be prepared to run into a stone wall on that.
But please don't put it off.
Hope that helps.
Anyways, I'm not sure the answer to your question, but want to be sure you know you have several options if you own the property free and clear. Contact me if you have any other questions.