An estoppel certificate is a statement that the association issues as to any amounts due and owing to the association on a property before the closing on a property. In the past, the estoppel has included any maintenance assessments due and unpaid, any special assessments due and unpaid, as well as any costs of collection for delinquent amounts. The certificate was required to be provided within 15 days of receiving the request and allows the association, or its management company, to charge a “reasonable fee” for the preparation of the certificate.
Now, the association will have 10 business days after receiving the request (electronically or written) to provide a certificate with:
- Date of Issuance
- Name of the owner of the property
- The property designation and address
- Any assigned parking or garage space
- Contact information for the association’s counsel if the account is in collection
- The amount of the fee for preparation of the estoppel
- The name of the person/entity requesting the information
The Certificate will also require:
- The frequency (monthly, quarterly, yearly, etc.) of assessments and amount
- The date the account is paid through
- The date due and amount of the next assessment
- Itemized list of any amounts currently due
- An itemization of the amounts to become due while the certificate is pending
- Disclosure the existence and amount of any capital contribution fee
- If there are any open violations on the property
- If the governing documents require the buyer to be approved and if so, whether the buyer has been approved
- If the association has a right of first refusal
- A list of and contact information for any other associations governing the property
- Contact information for insurance verification
- Contain the signature of an officer or authorized association agent (management, etc.).
The Certificate will be effective for a minimum of 30 days. The new law will also limit the fee charged for a typical estoppel cannot exceed $250.00, but additional fees may apply if there is an expedited request, the account is delinquent or the request is for multiple properties. This fee must be included in a Board resolution or contract with the management company and if the transaction does not close and a third party paid the fee, the association must return the fee to the third party and the fee should be charged to the owner of the property. Alternatively, if the association does not provide the Certificate within 10 days, they cannot charge for the Certificate.
If you are having trouble obtaining a certificate or if you have questions about preparing one, contact an experienced attorney at E.A. Zebell, PL to discuss your options.