Water Shortage Restrictions Override Deed Restrictions

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Monica Johnson

Homeowners associations may not require lot owners to pressure wash their homes, or to water or replace their lawns while there are water shortage restrictions in effect.

The Southwest Florida Water Management District (“SWFWMD”), the agency responsible for managing and protecting water resources of southwest Florida, has declared that Modified Phase III water shortage restrictions are in effect from June 5, 2017 through August 1, 2017 in several counties, including Citrus, DeSoto, Hardee, Hernando, Hillsborough, Manatee, Pasco, Pinellas and Sarasota, and portions of surrounding counties within SWFWMD’s jurisdiction. Continue reading

Short Term Rentals

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Tara Donovan

Does your Community Association have sufficient protections in place for Short-Term Vacation Rentals?

With the rise in short-term rentals through popular sites like Airbnb, Inc. and Vacation Rentals by Owner (VRBO), homeowners and condominium associations face new challenges in policing owners who violate restrictions against short-term leasing.  This is especially true in Florida where many people seek out vacation rentals every year.  Not only does this type of activity promote continuous violations of an association’s governing documents, but it presents privacy and security issues as well.  Continue reading

The Role of the Community Association in Neighbor vs Neighbor Disputes

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Clinton Morrell

Neighbor vs neighbor disputes are frequently a part of life in community associations. Common examples may include an owner allowing his dog to use his neighbor’s yard or an owner dumping trash on his neighbor’s yard. Although they may initially be trivial, these neighbor vs neighbor disputes can escalate into bitter personal rivalries. While many community associations believe it is necessary to intervene in an attempt to ensure good relations between neighbors, an association should only take action in such disputes when doing so is clearly within the scope of the community association’s purpose. Continue reading

2017 Proposed Legislation Regarding Florida Statutes, Chapter 718

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Jonathan J. Ellis

In recent legislation, Senate Bills 1258 and 1682 and House Bills 1001 and 1237 seek to amend Florida Statutes, Chapter 718.

Senate Bill 1258 and House Bill 1001 seek to fine directors who knowingly violate any Association bylaw or statutes.

Senate Bill 1682 and House Bill 1237 are more complex and seek, among other things, to: Continue reading

Two’s Company, but Three’s a Crowd: A Third Party’s Right to Intervene in a Foreclosure Lawsuit

Jason Davis

Are subsequent title holders who obtain an interest in real property during the pendency of a foreclosure lawsuit where a lis pendens has been properly recorded (referred to as a “Purchaser Pendente Lite”), entitled to join in the lawsuit to protect that interest? In Bonafide Properties v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., 198 So.3d 694 (2d DCA 2016) the Second District Court of Appeal says no and affirms the long standing doctrine of generally barring the intervention of a purchaser pendente lite in a pending lawsuit for foreclosure. Continue reading

Restrictive Endorsement

Jonathon Ellis

Restrictive endorsements when coupled with payment are still applicable to associations.

As many may remember, The Florida Legislature amended Florida Statutes §718.116 and §720.3085 to include language relating to the applicability of restrictive endorsements, designations or instruction accompanying payments made for delinquent assessments.  Specifically, Florida Statutes §718.116(3) and §720.3085(3)(b) state as follows: Continue reading

Limitations on Community Association Approval or Denial of Service Member Rental Applications

Clinton Morrell

Clinton Morrell

Effective July 1, 2016, § 83.683, Florida Statutes, requires landlords, condominium associations, cooperative associations and homeowners associations to process rental applications submitted by service members within seven days of submission. Within that seven day period, the landlord or association must notify the service member in writing of an application approval or denial and, if denied, the reason for the denial. If a rental application submitted by a service member is not timely denied, the landlord or the association must allow the lease to the service member if he or she has complied with all other terms of the application and lease. The statute applies to all “Service members,” which means any person serving as a member of the United States Armed Forces on active duty or state active duty and all members of the Florida National Guard and United States Reserve Forces. Continue reading