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

Also: An HOA board determined to alter trim shades for 108 group residences. Is that a content alteration – a little something members need to vote on?

STUART, Fla. – Issue: Our HOA board has determined to alter the trim colour of all 108 residences. The buildings are off white, and the trim has been a variation of gentle blue since they had been built in 1990. They now want to paint turquoise, peach, yellow, lime green or grey. The CC&R’s state the HOA maintains the exterior of residences and paints every seven a long time. My argument is that this is a content alteration and need to not be authorized. Assist me if you can or direct me in the right direction. – N.D., Melbourne

Solution: Home-owner Associations are managed by Chapter 720, Florida Statutes. Chapter 720 does not contain any necessity that content alterations be permitted by a vote of the house owners. You may possibly be thinking of Chapter 718, Florida Statutes which governs condominiums. So, with no statutory necessity for owner approval of the colour alter, it would be a board determination unless of course your governing paperwork deliver some form of restriction.

You need to read your governing paperwork completely to identify if there are any limitations pertaining to colour adjustments to the residences. If you had been a condominium, then the Statute, 718.113, demands a 75% approval of the total voting passions to make the colour alter unless of course the Declaration of Condominium supplies normally.

Issue: Through the new lockdown, people listed here and in various, potentially all, Florida communities have been deprived of amenities. In our situation, expenses to assistance our two clubhouses and connected services (namely athletics courts, pools, and health and fitness center with locker rooms), are itemized at somewhere around 31% of our total quarterly expenses. The administration firm did retain a skeletal staff, and all standard charges (e.g. drinking water, electrical, upkeep of two pools and two warm tubs, and more) had to have been significantly lowered. These amenities had been closed for 3 months.

When I emailed the on-internet site manager about a proration of expenses, the answer was NO! Our board of administrators incorporates members of the builder’s firm, the administration firm, and no people as the affiliation has not been turned above to people still. Is there a precedent or statute for proration of expenses in this situation? Would it be legal to withhold the 31% if I had been to place it in an escrow account? – A.C., Port St. Lucie

Solution: The unexpected emergency powers statutes for condominiums, cooperative and home owner associations give the board the authority to near or regulate entry to the amenities in buy to protect against the transmission of COVID-19. Though this may possibly appear to be unfair, you need to recognize that the board of administrators has a fiduciary duty to protect against or restrict liability. Closing the amenities is in the greatest curiosity of the over-all well being of the house owners and lowers the legal exposure of the affiliation.

The price tag of maintaining and insuring the amenities does not prevent just because they are closed. So, no you can not legally withhold the payment of assessments because the amenities have been closed by the board in reaction to the unparalleled COVID-19 pandemic.

Another way to think about it is that you can not withhold paying your taxes because some govt expert services or buildings have been closed because of to the pandemic. Putting your assessment payment in an escrow account would not prevent the affiliation from recording a lien towards your unit for unpaid assessments, so I would not advocate that program of motion unless of course you have a court buy permitting you to do it.

Issue: The time becoming in isolation has specified me way as well a lot time to ponder merchandise of very little to no importance. This becoming a single: My wife and I lately purchased a unit in a 26-floor condominium making on the Gulf Coastline in Southwest Florida. We procured a “unit” coverage policy covering particular residence ($21,000), loss of use ($8,four hundred) and dwelling ($116,000).

My query to you is: If a hurricane need to problems the exterior of the making, the COA has a policy covering this problems, but if the making is ruined necessitating a finish rebuild, am I protected for the worth ($325,000) of our unique unit underneath the COA policy? – N.P., SWFL

Solution: Segment 718.111(11) Florida Statutes covers a condominium associations coverage necessity. It demands the Association to insure the condominium making for a hundred% of its replacement price tag dependent on an appraisal of the making carried out no considerably less typically than every 3 a long time.

Richard D. DeBoest II, Esq., is co-founder and shareholder of the Regulation business Goede, Adamczyk, DeBoest & Cross, PLLC. The information provided herein is for informational reasons only and need to not be construed as legal tips. The publication of this write-up does not develop an legal professional-client romantic relationship amongst the reader and Goede, Adamczyk, DeBoest & Cross, PLLC or any of our lawyers. Readers need to not act or chorus from performing dependent upon the information contained in this write-up without the need of first getting in touch with an legal professional, if you have questions about any of the challenges lifted herein. The choosing of an legal professional is a determination that need to not be dependent solely on ads or this column.

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