Condo Q&A: Should Monthly Fees Drop If Amenities Are Closed?

Also: An HOA board decided to alter trim hues for 108 group residences. Is that a material alteration – one thing associates need to vote on?

STUART, Fla. – Query: Our HOA board has decided to alter the trim colour of all 108 residences. The buildings are off white, and the trim has been a variation of gentle blue given that they were built in 1990. They now want to paint turquoise, peach, yellow, lime environmentally friendly or gray. The CC&R’s condition the HOA maintains the exterior of residences and paints every single 7 a long time. My argument is that this is a material alteration and need to not be permitted. Enable me if you can or direct me in the right course. – N.D., Melbourne

Response: Homeowner Associations are controlled by Chapter 720, Florida Statutes. Chapter 720 does not have any need that material alterations be authorised by a vote of the entrepreneurs. You may perhaps be considering of Chapter 718, Florida Statutes which governs condominiums. So, with no statutory need for owner approval of the colour alter, it would be a board selection until your governing files deliver some variety of restriction.

You need to read your governing files totally to determine if there are any restrictions with regards to colour modifications to the residences. If you were a condominium, then the Statute, 718.113, requires a seventy five% approval of the whole voting pursuits to make the colour alter until the Declaration of Condominium supplies usually.

Query: During the new lockdown, people in this article and in many, perhaps all, Florida communities have been deprived of facilities. In our circumstance, charges to support our two clubhouses and involved services (particularly sports activities courts, swimming pools, and gym with locker rooms), are itemized at around 31% of our whole quarterly charges. The management firm did retain a skeletal personnel, and all regular bills (e.g. drinking water, electric powered, servicing of two swimming pools and two very hot tubs, and additional) had to have been significantly lessened. These facilities were closed for a few months.

When I emailed the on-website manager about a proration of charges, the answer was NO! Our board of directors includes associates of the builder’s firm, the management firm, and no people as the affiliation has not been turned more than to people nonetheless. Is there a precedent or statute for proration of charges in this circumstance? Would it be authorized to withhold the 31% if I were to set it in an escrow account? – A.C., Port St. Lucie

Response: The unexpected emergency powers statutes for condominiums, cooperative and homeowner associations give the board the authority to close or control access to the facilities in purchase to prevent the transmission of COVID-19. Whilst this may perhaps seem unfair, you have to comprehend that the board of directors has a fiduciary responsibility to prevent or limit liability. Closing the facilities is in the very best desire of the over-all wellbeing of the entrepreneurs and lessens the authorized publicity of the affiliation.

The expense of protecting and insuring the facilities does not halt just due to the fact they are closed. So, no you cannot lawfully withhold the payment of assessments due to the fact the facilities have been closed by the board in response to the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic.

A further way to feel about it is that you cannot withhold paying out your taxes due to the fact some government services or buildings have been closed owing to the pandemic. Placing your assessment payment in an escrow account would not halt the affiliation from recording a lien against your device for unpaid assessments, so I would not advocate that class of action until you have a courtroom purchase permitting you to do it.

Query: The time remaining in isolation has given me way as well substantially time to ponder products of tiny to no great importance. This remaining one particular: My wife and I not long ago acquired a device in a 26-flooring rental setting up on the Gulf Coastline in Southwest Florida. We ordered a “unit” insurance coverage coverage covering private home ($21,000), reduction of use ($8,400) and dwelling ($116,000).

My query to you is: If a hurricane need to damage the exterior of the setting up, the COA has a coverage covering this damage, but if the setting up is ruined necessitating a total rebuild, am I coated for the price ($325,000) of our person device below the COA coverage? – N.P., SWFL

Response: Part 718.111(11) Florida Statutes handles a condominium associations insurance coverage need. It requires the Association to insure the condominium setting up for one hundred% of its replacement expense primarily based on an appraisal of the setting up executed no a lot less normally than every single a few a long time.

Richard D. DeBoest II, Esq., is co-founder and shareholder of the Regulation organization Goede, Adamczyk, DeBoest & Cross, PLLC. The information and facts offered herein is for informational reasons only and need to not be construed as authorized advice. The publication of this posting does not generate an attorney-customer marriage between the reader and Goede, Adamczyk, DeBoest & Cross, PLLC or any of our attorneys. Viewers need to not act or chorus from performing primarily based upon the information and facts contained in this posting without the need of to start with contacting an attorney, if you have thoughts about any of the troubles lifted herein. The using the services of of an attorney is a selection that need to not be primarily based entirely on adverts or this column.

© 2020 Journal Media Team

Lorrie R. Pedigo

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