Published April 2022
Editor’s Note: The following best practices are provided to help board members in HOAs save themselves from spending extra money, compounding their association’s problems, or wasting their valuable time. Though this counsel can’t cover every scenario, FLCAJ trusts what is covered will be of beneficial use.
As a new board member, you will quickly learn that trees are one of your largest expenses and could pose a potential risk to the community. Most community’s members have different opinions on what proper tree care is and how to manage the various challenges trees present. This often leads to improper and sometimes damaging tree work practices. Trees that are not properly managed can become a major problem for a community if the tree falls and someone gets hurt. Tree care should only be performed when a well-thought-out plan is in place. If your community is soliciting tree care services without a tree management plan, it is highly likely your trees are being pruned too often and most likely improperly. We recommend you have an arborist consulting firm help you create a management plan to put you in control of your community’s trees, safety, and cost.
For more information, call (239) 571-9653 or visit www.arborologyinc.com.
Here are a few items to remember about ARC meetings in Florida according to F.S. 720:
Here are some tips to make your architectural review process easier:
For more information, visit www.arctracker.com.
With the slower pace of summer approaching, now is a good time to evaluate your community’s outdoor lighting. Do your community entrances, clubhouse vistas, and other common grounds fade into darkness at night? Professionally designed and installed landscape lighting will beautify your property and add the important benefit of safety and security for residents and guests. More good news: with the continual advancement of LED technology, converting your old lighting to our LED system will save money on two fronts. First, our LEDs use approximately 75 percent less energy than traditional light sources, and the resulting reduction in electrical costs is welcome news to the budget. Second, because our LEDs have a significantly longer life, ongoing maintenance costs are greatly reduced. The grounds and landscaping of your community represent large investments—maximize the enjoyment and utility of these assets at night.
For more information about Coastal Illumination, call (800) 586-0246 or visit www.coastalillumination.com/.
Here is a simple, five-step process for ensuring that your notice of violation will sound firm but friendly and lead to compliance.
Florida condominium and HOA associations have come under major scrutiny more and more for many reasons, including the recent, tragic Champlain Towers condominium collapse in Surfside.
Your association insurance renewal: Your agent should have provided an estimate of your insurance renewal increase, but did it take into consideration roof age, appraisals, and claims history?
A few factors in your renewal are as follows:
We’re here when you need us.
For more information, call (561) 276-5221 or visit www.plastridge.com/hoa-condos/.
Fining is a powerful enforcement mechanism for boards of directors. The steps below offer a useful guide:
As a board member, one of the many areas you are tasked with is presenting a budget to your residents. Unfortunately, all too often the budget isn’t worth the paper it is printed on. One of the most common complaints from residents is either our budget is too high or it is too low. In either case, you have issues. The following are some ideas you should consider when you are sitting down to prepare your next budget:
ffective way to plan your cash flow needs for future major repairs and replacements.
For more information on how we can assist you with your accounting and consulting needs, please contact The Bottom Line at email@example.com.
Congratulations on becoming or remaining a board member. This exciting opportunity is fulfilling but can be frustrating and overwhelming if you don’t have the right support. Of course, the vendors that take care of and maintain your property and structures are vital. However, almost all past board members will tell you that your property management company and your attorney are key to running an efficient administration. Find a property management company that is highly recommended by other boards. The property manager is your conduit to the attorney for day-to-day issues. Also, find an attorney with an association-based firm, with a reputation for prompt responses, effective communication, successful collections, and valued counsel. The most important ability your attorney has is availability. I hope you consider The JD Law Firm as I handle all matters personally and have since the firm’s inception. I hope to be “Your Association’s In-House Counsel.”
The Florida legislature is working through potential new requirements, but experts agree that a preventive inspection can save you very costly repairs and provide peace of mind. A preventive inspection, if done properly, should provide the following:
WHO benefits from preventive inspections?
All multifamily residential buildings benefit from preventive inspections, however older buildings and coastal buildings are more likely to have structural issues that are not visible.
Proactive inspections ensure condominium and association boards are the following:
For more information about preventive inspections, call True Property Inspections at (407) 395-4144.