Home Buying in Somerville>Question Details

Dm, Home Buyer in Somerville, MA

How to change a Condo Association to a Home-Owners' Association?

Asked by Dm, Somerville, MA Mon Jun 23, 2008

We're about to purchase a newly constructed house that adjoins another house on a lot of land. I understand that the developer couldn't afford to wait the six months that it would take to get a permit to create two single family homes on this lot, so he created a condo association instead, and built the homes against each other.

The result is that the condo docs now state that all but the internals of the homes are common property, with specific areas assigned exclusive usage to each of the two units.

If the two owners are in agreement, would it technically be possible to dissolve the condo association and turn it into a home-owners' association? The idea would be to deed exclusive-use areas directly to the units, instead of keeping them common.


Help the community by answering this question:


Hi DM,

a home owners association, is a condo association...it just means there is no proffessional management company involved. (the homeowners run and manage the property themselves.) You cant disolve the association, but if you and the other unit owner agree, you can revise the docs. It is always common property on the exterior, because of the towns requirements though, not because of the builders. The town has minimum square footage requirements to build, and it sounds like this space was not large enough for 2 seperate dwellings (on 2 seperate lots). Within the docs and the deed, you could "assign" usage or designate areas, but to be sure you should consult with an attorney.

Web Reference: http://MelissaBMancini.com
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jun 23, 2008
Hi DM - a condominium is a legal entity and is established according to all kinds of rules that involve both the state and the town. Amending documents can sometimes also require that the mortgage holders approve the changes, since they are really the ones that own the units -- they need to make sure that the changes meet their mortgage underwriting requirements. It will require an attorney and can be a long and costly process. Why go through all that? With the number of condos and homes on the market it's a lot easier to find another place to buy where you have more control. Good luck! Marilyn
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Jun 24, 2008
I've verified with the lenders and they're open to it.

So we have to check with the city, if they can allow it.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jul 1, 2008
This thread is really old, but I have this same question. I'm in one of three detached homes in Cambridge MA that are registered as a condo association and we are looking to change to a homeowners association. Any info you have on how to do this would be welcome.
Flag Wed Apr 3, 2013
Thanks for clarifying. Our attorney has said the biggest hurdle is the city and the lenders.

The reason we would consider attempting this is because we're buying a great property that, down the line, we'd like to be able to sell as a semi-detached single family home, instead of a condo.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jun 29, 2008
What ended up happening to your situation with trying to make them into semi-detached homes?
Flag Fri Jun 7, 2013
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