Re: condo fees
From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Fri, 21 Feb 2014 08:26:16 -0800 (PST)
Our total budget is ~$213,000 which includes deposits to our Replacement, long 
term Maintenance, and Emergency Reserves. Capital Improvements are funded by 
donations and "found money" that appears occasionally.

The condo fees include everything that that is spent on facilities, 
landscaping, administration, marketing, outreach, community events, etc. 
Members do subsidize events by bringing food, etc. For some large purchases 
that are particularly important to a few members, we do donation drives.

Fees also include gas, water, high-speed internet, premium satellite service in 
the CH, installation of amenities that benefit all units like a TV antenna, 
childcare on workdays and membership meetings, etc.

Remaining funds are used for operating expenses rather than taking funds out of 
the reserves.

Fees increase as the membership approves new or higher expenditures in the 
budget. Last year they rose 2.8% with added increases to the reserves, 
increased expenditures for some budget items (others were decreased as not 

The whole budget is funded according to our formula for condo fees -- 50% per 
unit and 50% variable by percentage interest. The percentage interest roughly, 
but not in all instances, is equivalent to square footage plus limited common 

We do occasional group purchases for owner expenses like blinds, new more 
efficient toilets, replacement water heaters (they all go out at once), and 
screen doors. 

Units range from one bedrooms with a den: 615 SF, to four bedrooms with a full 
basement: 1600 SF. Fees range from $114 to $363 per month.

We are in a politically and quality-of-life desirable neighborhood, but not one 
of the high end neighborhoods occupied by embassies, political figures, and 
highly paid Federal Employees. 

"Politically desirable" means liberal. DC is almost exclusively democrat. I 
think all the Republicans move to Virginia; at least the ones with lots of 
money. A recent implant from Brazil chose this neighborhood by looking at the 
voting pattern. This was the bluest in DC.

DC has many condominiums and a relatively high cost of living. Always fairly 
stable, it's economic viability has increased significantly in the last 10 
years. The large number of federal government employees keeps the real estate 
market more stable than many cities.

Sharon Villines
Takoma Village Cohousing, Washington DC

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