The board became aware of the dire condition of the tennis courts during the budgeting process for fiscal 2020. According to professionals, the average lifespan of a tennis court is around 30 years and our courts are 28 years old. Currently, our courts have over 1,500 linear feet of structural cracks, some exceeding a quarter inch in width. There are basically only two options to correct the condition, fill the cracks and resurface the courts or completely replace them. Filling the cracks costs about $12 a foot and resurfacing runs about $6,000. The total cost would be around $25,000. Choosing this course would be the cheapest but not a long term solution. At best we could see a 10 to 12 year extended life span for the existing courts. The experts also predict continued cracking that would require another 300 to 400 feet of repair in the next 5 to 6 years. In addition this option will not address any of the low spots that have occurred due to settling over the past 30 years.
The second option is to do a complete replacement now. The current courts would be removed and replaced by new courts and the 30-year clock would be reset. This option comes with the highest upfront cost of around $60,000. There are also unknown costs that could arise during the process. Is there adequate drainage to divert water away from the courts? Will sections of the fence need repair or replacement? Should the fence get new paint? Is this a good time to re-lamp the lights and should we replace them with LED bulbs? We would also like to see one of the courts overlayed with a pickleball court to encourage additional use by residents.
Regardless of whether you use the courts or not, they are part of the common property that brings value to our neighborhood and therefore to each of our homes. To let them continue to decay and become unusable or even become an eyesore is not an option the board would consider. We did, however, feel the pressure of the budgeting timeline while still needing some additional data before making a final commitment to one of the available options. Ordinarily, the reserve fund would be used for resurfacing the courts every five to six years. This would generally cost around $6,000 and there is no way our reserve fund could completely cover the cost of repairing or replacing the courts.
The decision was made to continue collecting information on the two options and make a final decision in the first quarter of 2020. In the meantime, we will start collecting an assessment to offset the cost of the least expensive of the two options. If it's determined that the courts should be replaced then we could charge an additional assessment of $200 in 2020 and have the work done or delay the repair until the spring of 2021 at which time the board can add the additional assessment to the 2021 dues. That would give us $58,000 for replacement and any additional cost would be absorbed by the $6,000 ordinarily used for resurfacing from the reserve fund.
Please send your comments to [email protected].
- Estimated cost over the next 12 years with each option.
- 2020 – Repair cracks and resurface $25,000
2024 – Repair cracks and resurface $10,200
2028 - Repair cracks and resurface $10,200
2032 - Replace courts $70,000
Total Cost $115,400
- 2020 - Replace Courts $60,000
2024 - Repair cracks and resurface $ 6,000
2028 - Repair cracks and resurface $ 6,000
2032 - Repair cracks and resurface $ 7,000
Total Cost $79,000
The additional cost of the crack fill option after 12 years could be as much as $36,000 versus replacement now.
Note: additional resurfacing cost every four years is due to expected increasing crack repairs of an older court.