Thoughtful planning needed at Centennial
I am writing this letter to shed some light upon the issues which have been discussed in the newspapers (The Aspen Times, March 20, Aspen Daily News, March 19 and 30) concerning Centennial and the need for a well-funded replacement reserve fund for the Centennial Homeowner Association.
I have worked with the Centennial Community Management, Inc. (CCMI) for the past 24 years managing the 149 rental units that entire time and contracting for the management of the 92 owner units for 10 of those years.
At the beginning of our management contract all buildings were newly constructed of architecturally-designed and specified materials. All of these materials and work was inspected and approved by the Aspen/Pitkin County Building Department. All work was done to standards in excess of the then-existent building code. As with all structures in our climate and altitude, the elements of sun, extreme temperatures and moisture/snow are brutal to building materials and seasonal maintenance and repairs are critical.
The rental property owners have annually spent money on repairs and maintenance such as staining, re-nailing, siding replacement, deck foundation repairs, windows/screens, and parking lot repaving and repairs, etc. The list continues to grow as the buildings age … it is a constant work in progress. The lender for the rental property requires a maintenance reserve fund as a condition of the loan agreement, but each year approximately three to five times this required amount is actually spent on maintenance items. Hundreds of thousands of dollars have been spent in recent years to insure the long-term quality of the rental buildings.
In 1994 when CCMI stopped managing the homeowner association there was over $106,000 in their separate invested reserve fund. I don’t know what sort of expenditures have been made from that fund during the past 15 years, nor do I know what amount of money has been collected and invested into the fund. On that same note, I do not know the condition or needs of the homeowners and their property. I hope they and their contracted management company will be able to prepare a long-term maintenance plan and preventative schedule for the buildings. With thoughtful financial planning to phase the repairs necessary during the next few years it should be possible to do so at a manageable cost for the entire association.
Centennial Community Management, Inc.
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