Reserve Study: Cost + reasons for
From: Christine Johnson (
Date: Mon, 6 Feb 2006 14:03:12 -0800 (PST)
Mary English wrote:

>.. can you tell us how much your community paid for the study?

The fee was $3,300 for a 3,800 sq.ft. common house, 48 units, and an unfinished pool (estimating from plans & equipment specs) on 5.1 acres in Tucson, AZ. Ours is a condominium complex and so our repair and replacement expenses are considerably higher than those of a townhouse complex or a single family planned community with shared facilities and so the fee may reflect that.

We used the firm we did (of the three which we researched) because:
A team of engineers and reserve analysts reviews the principle inspecting engineer's calculations and then composes the recommendations; this is opposed to a reserve specialist completing the work who may not be an engineer; They provided us maintenance recommendations which our maintenance team will be working with to write up a schedule (just as offered by the firm mentioned by Sharon Villines); They included our irrigation equipment replacement costs which some firms will not include because of the difficulty in estimating useful life; They provided us a preliminary report and following on our adjustments, will issue a final report. We have six months from the date of the inspection to compose our list of adjustments (such as eliminating replacement of a copy machine or increasing our reserve allocation in the present year) which will allow us to reduce the overall cost of funding the reserves and still keep us financially on track; In the calls to referenced people who manage complexes of our size who have contracted with this company, we heard all positive words plus I was personally treated to an outstanding lecture, illustrated with a sad story, on why it is that we are doing the right thing!

I haven't read the rules on this listserv for some time but I'm assuming that one may not name names so if you want the name of the firm, be happy to reply to you back list. Personally, I think they are terrific and I have a great deal of confidence in their work.

Christine Johnson
Stone Curves Cohousing
Tucson, AZ
manzjohnson [at]

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