People living in a Burlington condo building say it’s crumbling and they’re afraid of what could happen next. Structural studies have uncovered major problems and the owners are now involved in two lawsuits.
Barb Tessier lives on the first floor at 2411 New Street in Burlington. “No matter what you do to it, it continues to buckle and this is happening in a lot of the units.”
The structure was built over 50 years ago and converted into condo’s in the late 90’s. Tessier bought the unit for around $85 000. “Right now the value is approx maybe $40 000, and why is that? Because it’s collapsing.”
The condo corporation launched a lawsuit in 2010 seeking $20 million in damages, the city of Burlington is on that list. In a news release the city says:
“The building has been poorly maintained over the years. The decision to defer necessary preventive maintenance was made by the condo corporation.”
It goes on to say “The building met all relevant building codes at the time it was constructed, and again when it was converted to a condo.”
There are some specific questions you can ask before purchasing a condo or a home to avoid situations like this. Jason Truman is a partner with Edison Engineers and hasn’t seen the building on New Street but says “there is a story about structural issues in the building and we don’t see that very often.”
Before you purchase a condo or home for that matter ask when it was built. “Any building over 25 years old is in what we call a building renewal cycle. That’s when some of the major components of the building are requiring repairs and replacements.”
He says before you buy check the condition of the roof, windows, walls and structural items like a parking garage or balcony’s. All of it has to be listed on the status certificate.