HB 1203—Changes to the Homeowners’ Association Act

HB 1203—Changes to the Homeowners’ Association Act

By Yeline Goin, Esq. / Published July 2024

Photo by iStockphoto.com/felixmizioznikov

It seems that every year we can count on the Florida legislature making additional changes to the Homeowners’ Association Act (“HOA Act”), and the 2024 legislative session was no different. One of the HOA bills adopted by the legislature is HB 1203. The bill was formally sent to the governor on May 21, 2024. As of May 31, the governor approved the bill.

     The bill became law, and the vast majority of the changes took effect on July 1, 2024.

     The following is a summary of the more significant changes to the HOA Act. There are some additional changes to Chapter 468, regulating community association managers and community association management firms, that are not included in this article.

HOA Websites 

     By January 1, 2025, an association that has 100 or more parcels must post certain documents on a website or make the documents available through an application that can be downloaded on a mobile device. The documents that must be posted and the deadlines for posting are specified in the new statute.

     The website or application must include a password-protected section for owner and association employee access only, and certain information must be redacted before posting.

     The HOA must adopt written rules governing records retention.

Criminal Penalties 

     There are new criminal penalties for the following:

  • Knowingly, willfully, and repeatedly (two or more violations within 12 months) failing to retain or provide access to association records, with the intent to cause harm to the association or its members
  • Knowingly and intentionally defacing or destroying an accounting record; knowingly or intentionally failing to create or maintain accounting records with intent to cause harm
  • Willfully and knowingly refusing to release or otherwise produce association records with the intention to avoid detection for the commission of a crime or to assist another person with such avoidance or escape
  • Accepting kickbacks
  • Committing certain fraudulent voting activities.

     An association must respond to any law enforcement subpoena for records within five days or as directed by the subpoena, and the association must assist the law enforcement agency in its investigation to the extent permissible by law.

     A director is removed from office and a vacancy declared if charged with any crime set forth in the HOA Act.


  • An association with 1000 or more parcels must prepare audited financial statements, notwithstanding the association’s total annual revenues.
  • An association may not vote to prepare a lesser financial statement for consecutive fiscal years.
  • Debit cards are prohibited, and using a debit card issued or billed to the association for any expense that is not a lawful obligation of the association is a theft.
  • An owner may request a detailed accounting of any amounts owed to the association, and the board must provide the information within 15 business days. An owner may not make another request for a detailed accounting for at least 90 calendar days. Failure of the association to reply within 15 business days may constitute a waiver of any outstanding fines.

Board Member Education

     A “signed certification” is no longer required. Instead, all association board members must comply with new educational requirements.

  • Within 90 days after being elected or appointed to the board of directors, the director must complete a new director education curriculum.
  • The certificate of completion is valid for up to four years.
  • Additionally, directors must complete at least four hours of continuing education annually UNLESS the association has 2500 parcels or more, in which case they must complete eight  hours of education annually.

Architectural Control 

  • The association must reasonably and equitably apply and enforce architectural control standards.
  • The association may not enforce or adopt a covenant or rule that limits or places requirements on interior changes that are not visible from the parcel’s frontage or an adjacent parcel, common area, or community golf course.
  • The association may not require a review of plans and specifications for air conditioning systems or similar systems that are not visible from the parcel’s frontage or an adjacent parcel, common area, or community golf course and are substantially similar to systems that have been approved by the association.

     If the association denies a parcel owner’s request or application, they must provide written notice stating with specificity the rule or covenant the committee relied on when denying the request, AND the specific aspect of the proposal that does not conform to such rule or covenant.

Storage of Items

     Section 720.3045 is amended to state that an association may not restrict the installation, display, or storing of items which are not visible from the parcel’s frontage, adjacent parcel, adjacent common area, or a community golf course. The types of things that cannot be regulated include, but are not limited to, artificial turf, boats, flags, vegetable gardens, clotheslines, and RVs (if not visible as provided in the statute).


     Section 720.305 regarding fining and suspensions is amended, including the following: 

  • The committee hearing must be held within 90 days after issuance of the notice of hearing.
  • The committee may hold the hearing by telephone or other electronic means.
  • The committee’s findings must be provided in a written notice within seven days after the hearing.
  • If a violation has been cured before the hearing, a fine or suspension may not be imposed.
  • If violation has not been cured, the committee must set a date by which the fine must be paid, which must be at least 30 days after delivery of the notice.
  • Attorneys’ fees and costs may not be awarded against the parcel owner based on actions taken by the board before the due date of the fine.
  • Fines are prohibited for the following:
    • Leaving garbage receptacles at the curb or end of the driveway within 24 hours before or after the designated garbage collection day or time.
    • Leaving holiday decorations or lights on a parcel longer than indicated in governing documents, unless such decorations or lights are left up for longer than one week after the association provides written notice of the violation to the parcel owner.

Prohibited Clauses Related to Vehicles

     Section 720.3075 is amended to state that associations are prohibited from enforcing the following types of restrictions:

  • Parking a “personal vehicle” in the driveway or anywhere else a person has the right to park under municipal, county, and state law, including a “pickup truck.”
  • Parking a work vehicle with insignia or visible designation, except if it is a “commercial motor vehicle” defined in Section 320.01(25), F.S., as follows:
    • “Commercial motor vehicle” means any vehicle not owned or operated by the government with three or more axles or weighing more than 26,001 lbs. and using a special motor fuel on the public highway.
  • Requiring owners to use a preferred vendor list or restricting property access solely because a contractor or worker does not have a professional or occupational license.


     Section 720.3085, Florida Statutes, is amended to prohibit compound interest.

Electronic Voting

     An owner may consent electronically to voting electronically.

Yeline Goin

Senior Attorney, Becker

     Yeline Goin concentrates her practice on the law of community associations, primarily representing condominium, cooperative, and homeowners’ associations. She is one of only 190 attorneys statewide who is a board-certified specialist in condominium and planned development law. Ms. Goin previously served as the Executive Director of our Community Association Leadership Lobby, or CALL, which represents the interests of the firm’s 4,000-plus community association clients by monitoring and responding to legislation emerging from Tallahassee, which can significantly impact common ownership housing communities.
     For more information, call 407-875-0955, email ygoin@beckerlawyers.com, or visit www.beckerlawyers.com.