The Florida Condominium Act says that “any unit owner or other eligible person” may be a candidate for the board of directors. An individual is not eligible for board membership if the person has been suspended or removed from the board by the State, is delinquent in the payment of monetary obligations to the condo, or has been convicted of a felony, unless his civil rights have been restored for at least five years as of the date such person seeks election to the board.
Therefore, so long as a person is at least eighteen years old and not disqualified by the three eligibility requirements in the Florida Condo Act, the person is eligible to run for the board, unless disqualified by the articles or bylaws. If the articles and bylaws are silent regarding board eligibility, then a non-unit owner would be eligible to run. If you believe that a person is ineligible due to a felony conviction be careful because a person may have had their adjudication withheld and would not be considered a second degree felon. So before you go running off at the mouth about something you have seen on the public records make sure a lawyer has seen it or you may be in for a very uncomfortable confrontation that does nobody any good. Condos are the birthplace of a great many lawsuits in The United States.
So that takes care of eligible but what about “qualified.” This is a great “aha” moment because there are many many people sitting on condo boards who have no business being in charge of as little as a hot dog stand let along a HOA or Condo. Remember, most likely your condo or HOA is a multi-million dollar real estate asset and the people on the board must have some skill sets if they are to make crucial decisions regarding the governance of the board.
Recently, I was at a board meeting and the President (a sweet little old lady) did not know the difference between accrual based account and cash based accounting, had no idea what a lien was for and had not idea about condo collections. She could not read a financial statement and even with an accountant explaining it to her in the most rudimentary terms just did not seem to “get it.” Is this who you want approving your budget for next year? Some people on the condo board did not seem to understand that their authority springs from communal decisions made by the board and act unilaterally making decisions which exposes community associations to liability. Ninety percent of condo and HOA governance is “liability management.” Now, a board member does not have to be a community association manager but they should have some skills regarding business, understanding laws and proper governance of a condo or HOA. This is not a popularity contest.
So when considering a candidate to vote for in your next election ask them some rudimentary questions that you would want to know about your next Congressman or President. Would it hurt to ask: “Can you read a condo financial statement?” or even “Have you ever read the financial statement of this condo?” perhaps you may want to ask “Do you understand how a board of directors of a condo works?” and most important of all “Did you read the condo or HOA governing documents and state statutes and do you believe you have a rudimentary understanding of them?” Nobody is expected to understand then as a lawyer may, but NOT reading them at all (especially the associations CC&Rs) makes it clear that you may be eligible but certainly NOT qualified. You may want to ask them what CC&Rs even stand for (hint: covenants covenants, conditions & restrictions).
Tags: assessment collections, assessment collections for hoas, Collection agencies for condos, collections, Colorado community association reserves, community association assessment collections, community association money, community association payment plans, Florida collections for HOAs, neighbors helping neigbors in community associations, uniform collection policy condos, uniform collection policy hoa