Condo Line

In the event of neighbor conflicts

 

CAMquestion@cfl.rr.com

Q. At the last board meeting in our condominium, the board announced a new policy covering the event of a personal conflict with a neighbor. We are instructed to first call the police if the situation becomes violent and then if it is not resolved, report the matter in writing to the board. It was the consensus of the board that members need to address problems with another resident individually. I am appalled at this policy and can see many problems. What if the neighbor is intoxicated? We have a management company — is this — not an issue they should handle?

Since the manager and board members are rarely witness to neighborly disturbances, they become a third party. As such, they are limited to enforce or take sides in the dispute and they have no powers to resolve it. Also, there could be a liability exposure if they intervene and someone is injured or property is damaged. You may think that the board and manager are on duty 24 hours a day. If board members serve at will without any compensation, there is no requirement that they be available at odd hours. As to the manager, while compensated, most will not respond after hours except for emergencies.As to your example of a drunk, say he was swinging a knife and making threatening gestures. If you called the board or manager, what could they do? Don’t you think calling police would result in faster action? The board and manager have limited enforcement powers.

Q. As a condominium owner, do I have the authority to request an independent audit? Do members have the authority to request meetings? Currently we only have one a year.

J.C., Stuart

While a member can send a written request for copies of financial reports, the board is responsible for them and audits. For the board’s protection as well as members’, it should have a third party complete the reports and proper financial reports. You will find the list of “Official Records” that members have a right to view and copy in FS 718.111. A member who wishes to view or copy the records should send a letter with the request as to specific records and dates. An appointment should be made by the board for you to review the records. If you want copies, the board can charge a per page copy cost. This section also requires the board to complete an annual financial report. This report should be free to any owner within 120 days of its completion, thereafter a copy charge may be applied.

Here is what the statute says about reports: An association with total annual revenues of less than $100,000 shall prepare a report of cash receipts and expenditures. An association with total annual revenues of $100,000 or more, but less than $200,000, shall prepare compiled financial statements. An association with total annual revenues of at least $200,000, but less than $400,000, shall prepare reviewed financial statements. An association with total annual revenues of $400,000 or more shall prepare audited financial statements.

As an owner, you can request that the board call for a vote to prepare an audit. Just be aware that there is a cost for the reports. In addition, the board should complete a report every month or every other month. This is more of a comparison of the expenses and income compared to the budget schedule.

As to meetings, you can send a letter to the board asking that it discuss the question you want answered. Keep in mind that the board has the responsibility to operate the association and meetings are for that reason. As such most decision, motions and reports are made then. Matters of variations to common areas or changes to documents would require members to vote at members’ or annual meetings and you can request such a meeting but you must have other members sign your letter or petition. Also, with such modifications or changes, you should have an attorney review the petition and modifications.

Write to Condo Line, Richard White, 6039 Cypress Gardens Blvd., #201, Winter Haven, FL 33884-4115, or e-mail CAMquestion@cfl.rr.com. Include name and city.

Read more Home & Garden stories from the Miami Herald

  • Washington Report

    A creative way to reach a home sale

    Interest rate buy-downs, long used by home builders, are gaining traction in the resale market.

  •  
AT HOME for release JULY 2014 BY DESIGN Caption 05: Metallics, particularly gold, continue to draw the eye in home decor. A highly polished brass four-post bed with a padded upholstered headboard is a shout-out to '70s chic. The new London collection mixes tradition and Carnaby panache with surfaces that the company calls a mash-up of golds: shiny (but warm) brass, gold-leafed woods and satiny jewel-box cabinetry. The rivet treatment on the Kent buffed-brass chest of drawers echoes nailheads on the tailored upholstered drum ottoman.

    DESIGN TRENDS

    Practitioners of ‘modern’ design are softening their traditional starkness

    For minimalists, even a whisper of decoration is like a flaw on an otherwise perfect diamond. But one reason that a more modern aesthetic currently is appealing to a broader segment of consumers is because it’s showing a softer side. That may translate to a loosening of form or color — both unabashed and subtle — where something more neutral is expected.

  •  
Crate & Barrel’s Bowery queen bed has drawers underneath for storage

    Interior design

    Need more storage? Might have to sleep on that

    Restoration Hardware’s catalogs might be getting bigger, but its furniture, if you can believe it, is shrinking. In 2012, the retailer responded to growing demand for lighter, leaner pieces by introducing a line of scaled-down furnishings. This year, its Small Spaces catalog is organized by city and residence, such as Los Angeles Bungalow or Boston Brownstone.

Miami Herald

Join the
Discussion

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category