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Big changes to Florida Homeowners Association and Condominium Estoppel Process

News - Precedent Management

A recently passed piece of legislation in the state of Florida, HB 483, revises the process and fees of HOA/COA response time and charges for providing corporations and homeowners with Estoppel Certificates. On June 14th, Florida Governor Scott signed a bill into law that went into effect on July 1st, 2017. Among changes to HOA/COA board of director term limits and elections, the bill also contained an item dear to the hearts of the many people who have tried to procure a timely and accurate estoppel for a reasonable fee: Estoppel requests must be provided within 10 days, and estoppel fees are capped.

An estoppel letter, for those readers who reside outside the state of Florida, is an up-to-date account statement for all past due HOA/Condominium dues, fines, assessments, and penalties. This timely and correct accounting is important to parties involved with the purchase or sales of such assets, as these unpaid charges can complicate a smooth closing.

The legislation standardizes the information that must be provided for on the estoppel, and includes (among other items) assessment amounts and dates due, attorneys contact information, itemized accounting of all moneys owed on the date of issuance of estoppel to the interested parties, any open violations for unit, and contact for all other associations of which the unit is a member.

The bill’s main attractions are the formalized rules regarding the 10-day requirement for delivery of the estoppel and capped fees for preparation and delivery. The bill requires the HOA/Condo Association to deliver estoppel certificates within 10 days of request and be valid for a minimum of 30 days if returned by email; 35 days if returned by regular mail. An Association may charge no more than $250 for preparation of an estoppel for owners who are current on their assessments. If an estoppel is requested on an expedited basis, a charge of up to $100 can be added and the estoppel must be delivery within 3 days. An added charge of up to $150 can be charged if the owner is delinquent on assessments. This adds up to a $500 maximum fee for an expedited estoppel with past due fees.

Precedent HOA/ Condo program focuses on managing HOA accounts for title agents, lenders, mortgage servicers and large aggregators of residential properties by providing a range of scalable services focused on identifications of HOAs, confirming accurate contact information, obtaining account status detail and ensuring that our clients financial expense and exposure remains at minimum.

 

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