When a condo is first built and still controlled by the developer, HOA dues are kept low to not scare off buyers. Once the developer is gone, those payments have to be reassessed to ensure they meet the needs of the ongoing repair and maintenance of the building. (Hint, they’re not.) The Mayfair, neighboring Lee Oak Lawn Park, is 18 years old, and like all buildings, various maintenance requirements need to be met. 

Soon after the Mayfair gained independence, they began conducting reserve studies that detailed the condition  of their infrastructure, its life expectancy, and estimated costs to repair or replace.  As you know, I’m big on HOAs doing reserve studies to avoid surprises that typically equate to a special assessment and/or the sudden failure of a critical element of a building (That noise you heard? Surprise! The A/C will be out for the month of August).

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Billiards at The House, where classical and contemporary mix

Billiards at The House, where classical and contemporary mix

Well kids, we’ve reached the halfway point in our series. The first two covered buildings where utilities are included in their HOA dues as well as the outlying Bonaventure and Grand Treviso (here and here). The next pair, including this one, detail Dallas’ high-rise, high-roller buildings (here and literally right here).  Next week we’ll hit the first of two columns covering the mid-tier before rounding up with a final two detailing the starter- to mid-range offers.

That’s one thing worth noting: Dallas never really did the whole “high-rise as low-income public housing” thing that was prevalent in so many cities in the 1960s and 1970s. These often brutalist structures negatively shaped people’s opinions of high-rise living.  Entering Chicago from the south one was met by a row of high-rise dominos called the Robert Taylor Homes that devolved into crime-ridden, poorly maintained properties whose demolition began in 1998 after just 36 years of ugliness, neglect, and resident misery. Then there was the infamous Cabrini Green complex. Interestingly, both failed complexes were built during Mayor Richard M. Daley’s administration and torn town during Mayor Richard J. Daley’s … his son.

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