HOUSE DOCKET, NO. 2253        FILED ON: 1/14/2009

HOUSE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 3577



The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



In the Year Two Thousand Nine



An Act relative to affordable housing condominium fees and uses..


Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:

SECTION 1. Chapter 40B of the General Laws is hereby amended by adding at the end thereof the following new section:

Section XXX.  Condominium and association fees in condominium developments that contain mixed affordable and market rate condominium units shall not increase more than 3 per cent per year for any unit in such mixed occupancy development that is maintained as an affordable unit under Chapter 40B of the General Laws.

(a)  Any vote taken by the condominium owners or owners’ association that raises the condominium fee above 3 per cent in any calendar year shall not be binding on the owner of the affordable units.

(b) Any vote taken by the condominium owners or owners’ association that proposes to add an amenity to the condominium complex that is not an essential amenity shall not require the owners of the affordable units within the complex to contribute to the construction or maintenance of such amenities. Nothing in this section shall prevent any owner of an affordable unit within such condominium development from voluntarily participating in the construction and maintenance fees for non essential amenities.

(c) No owner of an affordable unit in a mixed occupancy condominium development shall be required to pay attorney’s fees to the owners’ association or other owners for challenging or defending against the actions of an owners’ association unless the affordable owner loses the challenge and the rule, regulation or by-law attempting to be enforced against the affordable owner addresses the health, safety or welfare of the condominium development as a whole.

The purpose of this section is to ensure that affordable condominium units, including the costs and fees related to such units do not increase to a level that would cause such unit ownership to be unaffordable.