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condo buying book
condo buying book

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Kay Senay

Kay Senay is a consumer advocate, syndicated columnist and an expert on all aspects of community association living. Because of her years of involvement with community associations, as a unit owner, board president and condominium management company professional, Kay has a unique understanding of the problems and concerns of buyers, owners, board members, and management companies.

She is the founder of a successful community association management company that is now in its second generation. Kay is an advisor to condominium and homeowner associations’ boards of directors.

Kay is a member of the industry’s recognized premier educational institution, Community Associations Institute (CAI). CAI is a nonprofit association created in 1973 to educate and represent condominium associations, homeowner associations and cooperatives. As a result of successfully completing many hours of education, CAI certified Kay as an Association Management Specialist and a Certified Manager of Community Associations.

Book Description

Is owning a condominium different from owning a single-family home? You bet it is! Most people who purchase a condominium have no idea what association living really means.

Retiring boomers and young professionals cause community associations to be the fastest-growing form of residential housing in the country, with their residents making up almost 20% of the population. 75% of buyers are new to the experience, and 10% of all buyers did not know they were buying into an association.

With hundreds of tips, pointers, and answers to questions, this non-technical book is thorough, well organized, and very readable. Also included are a glossary of community association terms and an index.

Many of the chapters are outlined in lists of Advantages vs. Disadvantages or Q&A format. Boxes highlight the do-not-miss points. There is literally no stone left unturned, whether it’s satellite dishes, leasing, patio furniture, garage sales, maintenance fees, or special assessments. The book’s purpose is to share the author’s experience with the pros and cons of condo buying and condo life, with the goal of educating buyers and owners about the important information that governs a condo association and thus affects residents’ lives.

Featured in this book are “Kay’s Exclusive Condo Buyer’s Checklists.” Worth the price of the book themselves, the checklists provide buyers with a simple and effective method to discover what living in their prospective condo is really like. The checklists enable buyers to untangle confusing community association documents, analyze the association’s financial condition, and talk to the community’s residents.

Book Reviews

seal“Senay writes with experience. ‘Most people who purchase a condominium have no idea what association living really means.’ The simple truth is that the buyer isn’t just purchasing a home, but a piece of a business. Condo Buying & Ownership Made Simple is thorough, readable and well-organized. The book contains a detailed index and checklists for potential buyers. Having put in the time behind the desk and on boards, Kay has literally left no stone unturned. While association living may not be for everyone, anyone considering the purchase of a condominium should inform themselves with this book.”

*****5 Stars (Highest Rating) – ForeWard CLARION Reviews

“Senay definitely educates the reader about what it means to be part of a community association, and she does so by going well beyond comparisons between private house dwellings and residential buildings. The book delves into the finer details by explaining declarations and by-laws and other issues residents have a right to know but often don’t.

Senay points out the pros and cons of condo living and leaves no situation to the imagination. After all, condo living is a different lifestyle than owning a single-family home, and a buyer must consider if this is suitable. She is thorough, but not confusing in her coverage, and provides extra help in case the reader is still confused by all the rules and regulations.

Chapters 11 through 13 give information about the professionals to contact, the documents to read and the final considerations before buying. And if that’s not helpful enough, there’s chapter 14: Kay’s Exclusive Condo Buyer’s Checklists…Reading it is like attending a one-day seminar about condo living.”

Meredith Daniels, Newsday

“This book should be required reading for any person thinking of buying into a condominium and every current owner of a condominium. It is fun, easy to read and overflowing with invaluable information.”

David W. Kaman, Ohio Community Association Lawyer and

“This is the ultimate how to guide for condo and community association real estate buyers. Condo Buying and Ownership Made Simple is an easy to read book with great checklists and information that assists from the decision process to gaining every advantage as an owner. This is a must have for every investor’s and agent’s library. If I was a real estate broker, I would stock this book to give to buyers to help make my job easier.”

Daniel Merrick, Ph.D., Instructions To Money Radio

“What a great tool for new buyers of condos. All the information is in one place for prospective buyers to learn what a community association really is. Condo Buying & Ownership Made Simple is clear, concise, and easy to read. The table of contents is broken down so that you can quickly reference whatever you are looking for. A must have for every buyer and owner.”

Chuck Glover, AMS®, CMCA®, Pres. Lake Management, Inc. (Association Management Co.),

“I thought the book was long overdue and I’m glad you were the person to write it due to your many years of experience in condominium management.  I think every condo buyer should read your book before buying a condo so they truly understand what they’re buying.  Most buyers don’t understand that they’re buying a lifestyle and all the rules and regulations that go along with that lifestyle—they are not just buying a property.  I will be introducing this book to all my condo buyers as a ‘must read’.”

Carolyn Kolba CRS, ABR, GSA, Broker

“It’s a tremendous book…I can’t say enough about it. Kay is brilliant. Had I known about this book before I put in an offer, I would have been educated about my future home. Now that I’m selling my condo, I’m recommending Condo Buying & Ownership Made Simple to prospective buyers. Spending $10 or $15 could save you thousands of dollars and a lot of disappointment or consternation later.”

Andrea Reynolds, B.S. Home Economics and Author

“Anyone considering condominium ownership should read this book before signing a purchase agreement.”

Robert S. Rosplock, Attorney

“As a condo owner myself, I was pleased to see such a comprehensive, clear and concise guide for folks interested in checking out condo living. It’s great for folks already there as well!”

Natalie Weinstein, The Home Show, WALK Radio 1370AM

“Kay’s book, Condo Buying & Ownership Made Simple, should be in everyone’s hands as they consider buying a condo or co-op. You’ll buy with your eyes wide open and no unpleasant surprises!”

Rita Cleary, Real Life Adventures, WDVR-FM Radio, Sergeantsville NJ

Audio Interviews


To download the Audio Interviews please choose:
seebo show The Donna Seebo Show Tacoma, Washington
word doc The Home Show with Natalie Weinstein Long Island, New York Part 1 Part 2 Part 3

Radio & TV Interview Topics

  • 1 in 5 Americans must deal with the nightmares of living in a Community Association.  Kay’s here to help!
  • Buyers beware!  The 9 most important items to consider before you buy!
  • Guest reveals the 5 “P’s” that drive owners crazy!
  • Have you been targeted by the Community Commandos?
  • Are Community Associations democracies or dictatorships?
  • Let’s talk money – the dreaded special assessments!
  • Rally ‘round the Rules!
  • Myths people believe about condo living!
  • Buyers’ mistakes!  The 5 biggest ones!
  • How to get the biggest bang for your buck!