A major condominium developer and a Montgomery County condominium homeowners group have reached a settlement regarding the developer's responsibility for cleaning up and restoring a large pond on the property.
The agreement was signed by Rockville Grosvenor Inc., a subsidiary of Chicago-based condominium developer American Invsco, and the Grosvenor Park Homeowners Association Inc., according to the Montgomery County Office of Consumer Affairs.
The developer agreed to pay the homeowners $67,614 and place and additional $16,614 and place an additional $16,903 in an escrow account. The homeowners are to use the money for dredging and repairing the pond.
According to the county's condominium law, a property report containing information on the budget, condition of the property and other matters of importance to prospective buyers must be filed with OCA before units are offered for sale.
The property report filed by Rockville Grosvenor said the developer planned "dredging as required and a general cleaning and outlining of the stream and pond areas" for the Grosvenor Park condominium project, according to Joe Douglass, condominium specialist with OCA. The developer subsequently filed an addendum stating that "certain areas along the sides of the pond and stream will be rebuilt and properly reinforced," Douglass said.
The homeowners group maintained that, in accordance with the original property report, Rockville Grosvenor was responsible for for dredging the silt that filled the pond. The developer disagreed, claiming it was bound only by the addendum, which did not mention dredging.
The consumer office brought both parties together and over the course of several meetings, the agreement was reached.
OCA Executive Director Barbara Gregg said the case "demonstrates the importance of a property report and its value to a prospective condominium purchaser." She cautioned prospective condo buyers to "examine the report carefully, keep a copy for reference, and be sure the developer fully complies with all the provisions."