Journal Notes—October 2019

Journal Notes—October 2019

by Michael Hamline, Editor / Published October 2019

Snowbirds, FLCAJ is glad to welcome you back to the Sunshine State. While you were gone for the last several months, there were some changes that occurred in your community and in your unit. On page 6 in the article “Snowbirds, Welcome Back to the Sunshine State,” multiple service providers share their best practices with you and what you need to do to make sure your unit and association is in great shape as you return to your southern home.

The Legal Corner has several informative articles. First, on page 54 is “Everything You Need to Know About Electronic (Online) Voting in Florida” by Ben Solomon with Association Law Group. He highlights the benefits of online voting—it saves cost to associations, increases member participation, eliminates dishonesty and human errors associated with paper votes, decreases meeting times, and greatly improves the process of inspections as well as potential recounts.

Roberto C. Blanch with Siegfried Rivera has written the article “Condominium Association Strategies and Services to Address Short-Term Rentals,” on page 58. He notes the challenges communities face when attempting to enforce rules on short-term rentals. There are multiple tools community associations can use to enforce their rules and regulations.

On page 60, Candace Solis with Becker answers an ongoing question in her article “How Does Your Collections Policy Stack Up?” What is important is that each community association should have a clear collections policy, and it should be shared with the association owners before it is implemented.

 In the article “A Case of Association Abuse,” Ryan Poliakoff with Backer, Aboud, Poliakoff & Foelster addresses a conflict between a recent owner and his condominium association that appears destined for a lawsuit. To get more details, turn to page 62.

Finally, Michael J. Gelfand’s Florida Law column can be found on page 64. He deals with the problem of estoppel letters inflating the amounts due and whether an owner can sue the association for damages. As Gelfand states, “Estoppel letters, especially inflated estoppel letters, can have adverse repercussions. Sales may fall through. Loans may be rescinded. Money may be lost.” The lesson to be learned for associations is to respond promptly to estoppel requests and to not intentionally inflate amounts due.

FLCAJ is glad the snowbirds are making their way back to Florida. Have a great October!