Transfer Fees Exposed!

I’m out of the office this week, presenting to the Utah State Bar on “Utah Community Association Law: Past, Present and Future,” and my attention was just drawn to an article on ksl.com, regarding transfer fees. The article correctly suggests that

If you plan on buying a home, insist that your title company provide you with a copy of all the Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions tied to the house. Comb through those documents. If you see a transfer fee on the home you want to buy, either negotiate to buy the house for less, demand that the transfer fee be removed or walk away.

My only dispute with this statement is that not all transfer fees are created equally. When you review the C,C & R’s, look to where the fees go; if they go to the community association in which you live, for clearly designated purposes, they may be to your ultimate advantage. If they go to the developer’s bank account, they are clearly not to your advantage and (IMHO) may, in fact, be illegal.

I hope to talk to the reporter on this story regarding the potential benefits of transfer fees and the possible illegality of the self-serving version of such fees; check this site for updates and links, if they are warranted.

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