Miami-Dade Approves Public Records for Condominium Associations

,Miami-Dade Approves Public Records for Condominium Associations

State Congress adopts regulations on condominium safety.

The financial statements and structural safety reports of condominium and homeowner associations must be made public, according to a new law approved by the Miami-Dade County Commission.

The law will regulate what to do and every how many years to ensure the safety of condominiums; it will require associations to upload financial statements; engineering reports and maintenance documents of historical structural problems of buildings to a county database; this will be publicly accessible and must be done by February 2023.

Who is required to do this?

Initially in Miami and then throughout Florida, state recertification of condominiums over three stories in height is expected; according to the safety bill passed by both houses of the state Congress, it must be ratified by the governor; to go into effect.

The approved law is part of a package of regulations; as a response to the Surfside building collapse, where 98 people unfortunately died; from where the lack of transparency of such information on the part of the administrations of such condominiums became evident.

Much of this information and documents are available to the owners; but are not available to the residents and even less to the public.

Currently, the law does not require it

In Florida, sellers of condominiums are required to provide financial documents and appraisal reports to buyers only at the signing of the sales contract, and only if the buyer requests such documents.

The law will also require condominium associations to have sufficient reserves to pay for major repairs, conduct studies of their reserves every decade, and provide inspection reports to owners; and if structural repairs are required, such work must be started within one year of the report.

The law will require recertifications in less time.

Recertification would now be required after 30 years, or 25 years if the building is less than 3 miles (5 kilometers) from the coast, and every 10 years thereafter; these measures were added to the bill that prohibits insurers from automatically denying coverage to homes based on the age of their roofs; homeowners with roofs more than 15 years old will be able to obtain inspections before insurers deny coverage.

It is hoped that these measures will really help

While the insurance clauses would need to be further developed to help relieve homeowners, it is also questionable to leave the safety and maintenance of condominiums in the hands of the associations, let alone keep enough funds to pay for the repairs, which is exactly what happened in the [Champlain Towers South] condominium in Surfside; the condominium complied with the inspection process but did not have the resources to pay for the repairs.

On average in Miami, for a 15 to 20 story building, an inspection can cost between $20,000 and $40,000; and between $2,000 to $4,000 for a smaller one, and to all this, we have to add the cost of those repairs; that is why we think that, if new and fair obligations are created, solutions should also be created to face some of these unforeseen events.

As always, if you have any doubts or want to learn more about this topic, contact us…

Call us at (305) 930-1160 or visit us at 605 Lincoln Rd Suite 250, Miami Beach FL 33139.