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Session Ends With Many Changes for All Associations

The 2024 Florida Legislative Session ended last Friday, March 8th, and it was one of the busiest sessions in memory in terms of producing new community association legislation. The following are just a few of the bills which passed which we will be covering in our upcoming comprehensive Legislative Guidebook. Please remember that these bills do not become law until they have been sent to the Governor who then has fifteen (15) days to sign a bill, veto a bill, or allow a bill to pass into law without his signature.  As such, we may not know the final outcome for some bills until May or June.

Notably, SB 278, the Estoppel Certificate bill did not pass which is a win for both community associations and their management teams.

Here are some of the bills you should be discussing with your association counsel.

Condominium Bills:

HB 1021 by Representative Vicky Lopez is known colloquially as the Condo 3.0 bill but it goes well beyond the scope of its predecessors, SB4D and SB 154, by, among other items, expanding the enforcement jurisdiction of the Division of Condominiums; creating new standards for CAMS; imposing new funding and notice requirements related to structural integrity reserve studies (SIRS); imposing mandatory board member educational requirements; imposing new penalties for voting fraud; and requiring associations who manage 25 or more units to maintain an association website where specific association documents must be posted.

HB 1029 creates the “My Safe Florida Condominium Pilot Program” within the Department of Financial Services (DFS). This legislation will create a state-funded inspection program to determine mitigation measures that hopefully will reduce a property’s vulnerability to hurricane damage and provide for mitigation grants to retrofit the condominium property.

HOA Bills

HB 293 requires HOAs to adopt specifications for hurricane protection and prohibits HOAs from denying an owner’s installation or replacement of certain hurricane protections including storm shutters, metal roofs, erosion controls, and other forms of hurricane protection.

HB 59 amends Section 720.303, F.S. to require an HOA to provide digital copies of the governing documents and rules to every new member of the association and provide all members with amendments to the covenants and rules.

HB 1203 was passed as a response to the massive Hammocks HOA fraud case in Miami-Dade County. Among its many provisions, this bill imposes mandatory educational requirements for HOA directors; limits an HOA’s ability to regulate parking and commercial vehicles, limits the function of an HOA’s architectural control committee, imposes stiff penalties for the denial of records access to owners; requires websites for associations with 100 parcels or more and further revises the fining process in a less than helpful manner.

HB 1645 provides that HOA covenants may not prohibit the types of fuel sources that serve customers in the community, including natural gas utilities and liquefied petroleum gas (aka propane) dispensers, and also provides that the HOA covenants may not preclude appliances using those energy sources. It is troubling to note that HOA residents must now be allowed to install EV charging stations and propane gas/natural gas; let’s hope installers for each take proper safety precautions.

SB 1420 modifies the language in Section 720.406, F.S. regarding the meeting procedures when homeowners association covenants are being revitalized.

Timeshare Bill

HB 429 expands certain regulations of timeshare properties and allows the managing entity of a timeshare to take action against occupants who violate the documents, are in possession of controlled substances, and/or engage in conduct that disturbs the peace or is threatening to the life and safety of others.

Mobile Home Bills

HB 613 expands the alternative dispute resolution process for disputes between mobile homeowners and park owners and provides access to the mobile home park and the mobile homes for live-in health care aides.

HB 939 provides that a mobile home title must be retired when it is encumbered by a mortgage on the mobile home and the real property upon which it is situated.

Miscellaneous Bills

SB 280 limits the ability of local government to regulate short-term vacation rentals but does permit occupancy limitations. The legislation provides for the DBPR’s Division of Hotels & Restaurants to regulate vacation rental platforms. The good news is that the legislation specifically does not preempt or supersede community covenants.

SB 1049 creates a new disclosure requirement related to flood damage prior to executing a contract for sale. The disclosure must be in writing, and it must state whether the property has suffered damage from temporary or permanent flooding from inland or tidal waters, excessive rainfall, or rapid accumulation from any established source.

Hopefully, you have all tuned in to Bryony Swift’s Weekly Online Legislative Briefings throughout the Session. These weekly updates have been incredibly helpful in keeping our CALL members informed on the twists and turns this year’s bills took as they cycled through the committee process. The last weekly briefing will be on Thursday, March 14, at 11:30AM EST. You can register for the final session here.

As you can see from the foregoing lengthy list of bills, it will be crucial for you to speak with your association attorney about the operational changes you need to implement to comply with these new laws.  Among other items on your “to-do list”, you will also need to confirm that you have sufficient D & O coverage and fidelity bonding in place. Being a board member or licensed CAM has never been a stress-free endeavor, but today’s climate makes those choices even riskier.

If you have questions about community association legislation, please reach out to any of our CALL team members.

Donna DiMaggio Berger

Kenneth S. Director

Steven H. Mezer

Bryony G. Swift


Contact: becker@beckerlawyers.com

We help draft legislation and work closely with legislators and members of the executive branch to improve the laws that impact community associations in Florida. We offer legal Insights, analysis and ideas for community leaders and members to better manage their associations. CALL provides educational services that promote better association management and teach members how to effectively lobby and communicate with legislators. Whether association operations, insurance, storm preparation / recovery, SBA loans, or anything else, we're equipped to help you address the important issues. We advocate on behalf of more than 4,000 community / condo / homeowners' associations, mobile home communities and cooperatives throughout the state. We make it our mission to relay the latest information, like current events, legislative initiatives and legal issues affecting common ownership communities.