Can Belle Isle condos work together to get better prices?

As buildings on Belle Isle take on expensive major renovation projects, one homeowner association president has proposed there could be strength in numbers, and if several of the buildings worked together on key contracts it could translate into savings for unit owners.

Nellie Barrios, the new president at Costa Brava (11 Island Ave.), thinks there could be savings on contracts for elevator service, laundry, cable and internet, pool maintenance, landscaping, even some engineering work.

Barrios invited association presidents to discuss the idea at a meeting last week. She met with presidents from Belle Plaza (20 Island Ave.) and Nine Island Avenue to explore the idea.

“We will be reaching out to the other associations and have a monthly lunch meeting,” Barrios said. “The purpose is to brainstorm, learn from each other’s mistakes as well as successes and to maximize our negotiating power for common services.”

Several buildings — Belle Plaza, Costa Brava. Belle Tower, Island Terrace (5 Island Ave.) and Terrace Tower (3 Island Ave.) — have shared laundry, and could negotiate a laundry service.

Elevator contracts, Barrios said, are expensive and a group deal could give each building better terms. If nothing else, there could be a better rate for work needed after 5 p.m.

And then there is cable and internet — nobody thinks they are getting a great deal. Terrace Tower recently negotiated a building deal with DirectTV.

“We’re all excited about the possibilities and committed to work together to maximize the value the residents receive,” she said. “I think it’s a positive step forward.”

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