Condominium Lending Relationship Manager
Condominium Lending Relationship Manager
The Hills at Mainstone Condominium, located in Wayland, MA, needed major renovations including completing final phases of a multiyear roofing and building envelope project. When the Board of Trustees was tasked with unpacking the plan and financial strategy behind making these updates, they reached out to their trusted business partners including their construction contractor, Property Manager and ultimately South Shore Bank.
The construction company assessing this project gave their recommendation and pointed the Board towards two financial institutions, South Shore Bank based on their years of successful condominium borrowing from with the Bank; and another lender.
Dan Schimmel, Treasurer of The Hills at Mainstone, explained how working with the Condominium Lending team at South Shore Bank helped them go beyond accomplishing their renovation goals but also gain a trusted Business Partner and advisor to look at how the Association operated and make financial suggestions to help them secure more capital reserves and plan for future projects.
Tell us about your property - I became the Treasurer of The Hills at Mainstone in 2022. The Hills, as we call it, is the largest condominium complex in Wayland, Massachusetts. There are 146 units total in the community. The complex itself is about 35 years old or so.
What led you to decide to bank with South Shore Bank and what makes the Bank different? - We began working to assess what work needed to be completed to bring each of the 146 units up to the 30-year standard. When our legacy banker was uninterested in larger size loans and longer debt, our construction company turned us on to the two banks they work with regularly, one being South Shore Bank. They suggested South Shore Bank’s long term condo lending, which is when we were introduced to Chief Banking Officer, Dan Picha. What mattered to us on the Board of Trustees was who could provide the best service and best terms for the loan. In the end, Dan Picha and South Shore Bank won us over in terms of rate, better responsiveness, and overall flexibility.
How did South Shore Bank provide solutions that made your project affordable? - While discussing the loan options with South Shore Bank, we decided to include other long term deferred maintenance projects such as a clubhouse renovation and upgrading our lighting infrastructure. Dan Picha’s knowledge and ability to communicate helped us secure a rate. He kept us in the loop throughout the entire approval process and kept us aware of deadlines.
Is there something about working with South Shore Bank that resonates with you? - I would say it was an equal combination of a few things. First, the loan terms were superior, which is after all a big part of what matters. But the flexibility and responsiveness that the condo lending team showed at South Shore Bank played a very big part in that.
How did the solutions South Shore Bank provided have a business impact, and, in turn, impact the community? - To me, it is a nice solution that is perfectly blended as a lending partner with the community and with our construction. These are improvements that theoretically have a 30-year life, so you’re matching the life of the improvement with the life of the loan. The way we were making renovations before was not only costing more money to keep the maintenance and infrastructure up to date, but also relying more on special assessments over long term financing. Working with South Shore Bank provides a fair and equitable solution for our residents.
In the Condominium Management Industry we are always looking for the best services and pricing for our clients. With so many communities facing the challenges of replacing large scale capital property components, the financial stress of how to cover the costs of those projects begins to set it. In some cases assessments and the use of existing reserves is a preferred option. But what if those options are not available? What if the project arises earlier than predicted due to premature failure? This is where South Shore Bank is able to help provide communities the funding needed today and the option to reduce the financial impact to owners by spreading the repayment over time. Mercantile Property Management has been working with South Shore Bank, in particular Daniel Picha, producing these alternative options for many of our clients for the last several years. Dan's attention to client needs, understanding of project necessity and development, and financial planning have been a major asset to both our clients and to my staff as we work to develop the most cost effective and financially feasible plans for each community. The loan process from start to finish is fluid, well documented, prompt, and clearly explained to clients. No questions go unanswered. - Ryan J. McGowan, CMCA®, President, Mercantile Property Management