Transition Study: Traditions of America at Liberty Hill, Boalsburg, Pennsylvania
A 282-unit residential community with 139 detached, single-family homes and 143 attached townhomes.
The challenge in any HOA transition study is to distinguish between serious structural and design deficiencies that require attention, and deficiencies that should be noted, but don’t rise to the same level of concern. In the “serious deficiency” category, our inspection identified flaws in the construction of the community’s clubhouse. A Criterium engineer did a follow-up inspection after the transition study was complete, to verify that the contractor had made the necessary corrections. In the “not so serious” category, HOA board members had identified problems in the landscaping of this 82-acre development that they thought might warrant a construction defect suit. We explained that the “deficiencies” they perceived were actually symptomatic of a new development and would cure themselves over time with proper maintenance. The information and counseling we provided reassured the board about the condition of the property and helped the association avoid a legal battle it didn’t have to fight.
A Criterium Engineers transition study doesn’t just provide the detailed information HOA boards need about the condition of the association’s property; it also provides the perspective they need to evaluate that information and make decisions based on it. Our engineers don’t just analyze condominium buildings; they advise and support the boards responsible for managing them.
Reserve Study: Pebble Creek Golf Resort, Goodyear, Arizona
A sprawling resort community with 6,000 free-standing homes (when we did this study) for which owners are responsible, plus three golf courses, three clubhouses, two swimming pools, miles of roadways and common utilities, totaling more than 3,000 assets managed by the HOA.
An estimated useful life (EUL) had to be calculated for each of the community’s 3,000 assets. While some reserve studies simply subtract the current age of the asset from its life expectancy (calculated by the manufacturer), our calculation also considers the asset’s current condition and its current use. For example, the exercise equipment in this active adult community is used constantly – far more than the equipment in most public health clubs. That intense use will significantly reduce the EUL and accelerate the community’s capital repair and replacement costs.
Reserve studies are not ‘fill-in-the-blank’ exercises. Three identical components in three different communities may have three different EULs. A Criterium Engineers reserve study will capture those differences.
Capital Needs Assessment: Home Owners Association at Diamond Cove, Great Diamond Island, Maine
A year-round island resort community including 250 single family houses and condominium residences, plus a hotel, two restaurants and a marina.
Diamond Cove was converted from a former military base constructed near the turn of the century. Many of the homes and other buildings are original structures, included on the National Register of Historic Places. The infrastructure includes some components that are new and others (the water pipes) that are more than one hundred years old. Complex maintenance obligations for this mixed-use development are allocated among the HOA, individual owners, and the local government. Old bylaws, lacking the sophistication of newer ones, added another layer of complexity to the analysis of who is responsible for maintaining what.
Criterium Engineers drew on decades of experience analyzing structures of all kinds for condominium communities all over the country to develop the comprehensive and detailed cost projections this HOA needed to manage the community’s finances.