Legal Question in Real Estate Law in Illinois

I live in a six unit self managed condo building in Chicago, Illinois. I am a long time owner for more than 25 years. During that time we have had several owners on the board as president including myself. Recently the entire board changed out due to long time owners selling and my decision to no longer serve on the board.

The new Board President took it upon himself to alter part of the common area of the basement wall installing hooks to hang heavy items like bikes along a 6 foot section. He drilled into the 100 year old brick (he is not a professional) without consulting any other owners/association members first. I am not sure he even consulted other board members for approval prior to the installation. After the fact he said this was for the use of all owners.

While this may seem trivial, because he is not a professional I have no idea if they way he drilled holes will cause seepage or structural damage to this old building. I also believe this falls under a material alteration and not standard building maintenance.

Is this in violation of the declaration by-laws and state law? Doesn't any alteration to a common area require a majority vote of the association members to pass?

Thank you

Asked on 3/29/21, 6:18 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Someone will have to review your declaration and by-laws. It is possible the 'new' board had the authority and approved the installation(s). But also how was it paid for - ? This could be a budget issue in a small association. Then again maybe the 'new' President just paid for it himself.... And there may be fire code issues if the location of the hanging property intrudes on a required corridor or space width.... But it sounds like something that he didn't decide to do on his own, even though he 'took it upon himself' to do. And if other board members are ok with it, you may have to call for an owners' meeting to discuss it.....

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Answered on 3/29/21, 8:18 am

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