City of Boston Department of Neighborhood Development’s Boston Home Center Division

Semester: 2015 Spring

Students: Kelly Knight and Jason Kramer

The mission of the City of Boston’s Department of Neighborhood Development (DND) is to make Boston the most livable city in the nation. The Boston Home Center (BHC), a division of the DND, helps Boston residents purchase, improve, and keep their homes. The BHC offers training and financial help to first‐time homebuyers; guidance and funding for homeowners for home improvements; and counseling to help families avoid foreclosure.

The Boston Home Center is often contacted by members of the DND’s deed-restricted affordable condominium associations who are experiencing a variety of difficulties, including: mortgage/condo fee payments; the desire to sell or refinance their condo only to discover that their association does not meet Fannie/Freddie underwriting standards; a non-functioning association; or associations with high assessments to cover capital improvements. HNMCP students will examine ways to address recent issues of conflict around small and self‐governed condominium associations and develop resources for conflict intervention

Activities and deliverables:

  • HNMCP students will assess how DND currently manages condo conflicts and learn more from any existing DND condo associations currently experiencing conflict;
  • Develop a system by which DND might assist condo associations in conflict, including a potential training guide for condo associations that includes best practices, next steps, and resources for addressing and resolving conflict;
  • Implement a conflict resolution protocol for one of the affordable condominium associations;
  • Possibly develop a conflict resolution training for the BHC.
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