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A capital reserve study is a long-term association budget planning tool based on assumptions of when each capital item may fail in the future and what its replacement cost will be. The reserve study determines the remaining useful life and replacement costs of common area elements such as asphalt paving, roofing, siding, windows, and mechanical system components such as pumps, which would not normally be paid for from the operating budget. The study also determines the proper amount of reserve funds to put away each month as the property ages.