Twelve Ways an Owners’ Representative Will Save Your Condominium Association’s Money

Twelve Ways an Owners’ Representative Will Save Your Condominium Association’s Money

By Adam Snitzer, CFO / Published May 2023

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Condominium finances present a special challenge.  After all, association board members aren’t just managing their own money.  They have a responsibility to ensure that the entire community’s money is spent wisely and put toward long-lasting investments.  This is especially hard because most condominiums’ financial reserves are limited, and very few unit owners are enthusiastic about special assessments.

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     So, when it comes to large renovation projects, condominium association board members are caught between a rock and a hard place.  On one hand, they have a fiduciary and statutory responsibility to maintain the building and its amenities.  On the other hand, they’re held accountable by dozens—if not hundreds—of unit owners for getting it all done without wasting a dime.  

     The problem is that most association board members aren’t construction professionals.  So, when it comes to major renovation projects, it’s all too easy to make rookie mistakes that wind up costing communities hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars unnecessar-ily. Without an expert to guide you…

  • Your construction documents may be incomplete or confusing, leading to costly change orders.
  • You may choose a general contractor based primarily on price without enough consideration for the long-term quality of their workmanship and value of their warranties.
  • You may sign a construction contract that inadequately protects the association, exposing you to delays and extra charges.
  • You may fail to properly manage project logistics, resulting in costly do-overs.
  • You may miss opportunities to protect your association from inflation through vendor negotiations and advance purchasing of building materials.
  • You may accept product specifications from your engineer without exploring lower-cost alternatives that will do the job just as well.

     That’s where an owners’ representative like DSS Condo comes in.  An owners’ representative’s services are among the best investments an association can make during a large renovation or restoration project.  That’s because a good owners’ representative is likely to save your association two to three times what you pay them.

     How is that possible, you ask? Here’s how.

  1. Researching options—An owners’ representative will provide alternatives for materials, labor, and construction methods that will save your association money.
  2. Networking—An owners’ representative will have a network of contacts in the construction industry that can be used to find better and cheaper ways to do things.
  3. Utilizing their experience and knowledge—An owners’ representative has a wealth of experience and knowledge in the construction industry, which can be used to find better and cheaper ways to do things.
  4. Identifying opportunities for savings—An owners’ representative will be constantly looking for opportunities to save money, such as by identifying ways to reduce waste, streamline processes, or negotiate better deals with vendors and contractors.
  5. Finding alternatives—An owners’ representative will find alternatives to expensive materials, labor, and services, such as by using less expensive materials that are just as effective, or by finding less expensive construction processes.
  6. Practicing innovation—An owners’ representative will be open to new and innovative ways of doing things, such as by utilizing new technologies or finding new ways to use existing materials.
  7. Utilizing their understanding of the local market—An owners’ representative is familiar with the local market and will find the best deals on materials, labor, and services.
  8. Collaborating with the team—An owners’ representative will collaborate with the other members of the project team to find the best and most cost-effective solutions for the project as well as to ensure coordination among all parties involved in the project, which will prevent costly misunderstandings and expensive delays.
  9. Controlling cost overruns—An owners’ representative will identify and mitigate potential cost overruns by closely monitoring the budget and keeping all parties ac-countable for staying within it.
  10. Managing change orders—An owners’ representative will manage change orders by closely monitoring the scope of the project and ensuring that any changes are necessary and that the cost of the changes are fair and reasonable.
  11. Maintaining the schedule—An owners’ representative will identify and mitigate potential delays by closely monitoring the schedule, ensuring that all necessary information is provided in a timely manner, and keeping all parties accountable for meeting deadlines. 
  12. Enforcing contracts and minimizing risks—An owners’ representative will manage and enforce contracts by ensuring that all parties are meeting their obligations and that any disputes are resolved in a timely and cost-effective manner.

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     It’s important to note that every project is different, and the ways an owners’ representative will find better and cheaper ways to do things will depend on the specific project and the owners’ needs.

     But the truth is, too many board members think about an owners’ representative as an extra expense to add to a renovation project’s cost.  The reality is quite different. Communities that decide to move ahead with a major renovation project without expert guidance are taking a huge and potentially very expensive risk.

     The age-old adage applies: “Don’t be penny wise and pound foolish.” In the end, with the right owners’ representative your project will cost far less.

Adam Snitzer

Chief Financial Officer, DSS Condo, LLC

     Adam Snitzer is chief financial officer of DSS Condo, LLC, South Florida’s only construction project management/owners’ representative firm specializing exclusively in serving condominium association and homeowners’ association communities. “What I love most about my job,” he says, “is the way we save our clients so much money.” He can be reached via email at For more information about DSS Condo, visit