Condo Renovations during COVID19

Even though Georgia has started to reopen for business, community associations are still taking precautions during the COVID-19 pandemic. This is especially true for condominiums where public indoor spaces are often unavoidable (e.g., common element lobbies, elevators, and mail rooms). For this reason, condominium boards and managers have been justifiably concerned about residents bringing in outside visitors. In fact, there have been many questions as to whether a resident should be allowed to bring his or her contractor into the building?

In early April, persons that were required to shelter-in-place (under Governor Kemp’s Executive Order dated April 2, 2020) were not supposed to receive visitors unless the visitor qualified under one of the exceptions listed in the Order. In the context of a visiting contractor, the most applicable exceptions were for: (1) visitors providing support for the person to conduct activities of daily living or instrumental activities of daily living; and (2) visitors providing necessary supplies and services, such as food and supplies and equipment needed to work from home, and products needed to maintain safety, sanitation, and essential maintenance of the home or residence. Although the Order above is no longer in effect, condominium boards and managers can still use the foregoing language as guidance for visiting contractors going forward.

For Example:

  • If a contractor is providing construction, renovation, or maintenance services to a condominium unit that supports the resident’s ability to conduct activities of daily living (e.g., repairs to an appliance, plumbing, or HVAC system), the association should probably continue to allow these contractors into the building.
  • On the other hand, if a contractor is not providing services that supports the resident’s ability to conduct activities of daily living (e.g., renovations to a unit used solely as an investment property), the association may have an interest in limiting this type of unnecessary visitation to the building.

Either way, condominiums should continue following public health officials’ recommended guidelines to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. For contractors visiting a condominium, this may include several new and/or revised procedures such as wearing a mask and gloves while in the public spaces, designating limited times for construction, being accompanied by the owner or resident when using Common Elements, designating one contractor entrance and elevator, a cap on how many representatives can be onsite at one time, and/or wiping down certain items when contractors enter and leave the building.

-Kevin K., Esq.                     

Still have some legal questions regarding construction and renovations? Ask the experts!

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