Thursday, December 17, 2009

Back to the basics!

Traditionally, the Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares and Mobile Homes was charged with educating the millions of people living in common interest ownership communities. That was a tall but worthy task to fill given the $4.00 per unit fee. Somewhere along the line, however, the Division became more involved in investigating complaints and less involved in educating owners and board members to prevent those complaints.

Depending on where you stand in this debate, you either see that change as shortsighted or necessary. A condominium owner paying his or her $4.00 per year who never makes a complaint may very well not be receiving a proportionate value for that $4.00 yearly fee as the next door neighbor filing 30 complaints a year is. After all, there are only so many resources to go around and the recreational complainers tend to get more than their fair share of the pie while the silent majority go without.

What does this mean? When the Division has the opportunity to educate, condominium and cooperative owners would be well advised to jump at the chance to take advantage of it.

On Tuesday, January 12, 2010, the Division will hold a seminar from 6:30 pm to 9:00 pm at the Miami Beach City Hall located at 1700 Convention Center Drive, 3rd Floor Commission Chamber, Miami Beach, FL 33139. The purpose of the seminar is to discuss budgets, financial reports, the complaint process and board member responsibilities relating to condominium associations. There will also be a section regarding current financial issues facing associations and how they can be addressed.

The seminar is free and open to the public. There will be question and answer sessions and educational materials handed out. If you have any questions about this event, please contact Lynn Bernstein at 305-673-7000, Ext. 6178 or via email at lynnbernstein@miamibeachfl.gov.

Perhaps it's time to take back your share of the pie and receive some of the education for which your annual fee is ostensibly designed.

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