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Subject: Illegal Renters/ Bylaw violations
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Author Messages
GerryW1
(Florida)

Posts:122


05/01/2021 7:32 AM  
Hi. Need help with game plan dealing with illegal renters at our Dade County Florida Condo. CCNRS mandate 2 year rentals, and set amount of rentals (10% I believe, with all allowed filled). We have several apartments which are known to be AirBNBs, as well as several who had rental agreements, left and illegally subletted. The Manager and Board have been contacted by numerous condo owners (re:noise, Covid and drug violations) at some of these, yet nothing has been done. I called the office yesterday to report that new people were in the next door apartment, I knew they weren’t the owner or his family, and inquired “Did they have a rental contract?” I was told that was confidential, and they would look into it. My questions are: 1. What is our homeowner recourse, and a reasonable game plan? In Florida, would registered or certified letters require a response.2. After exhausting normal channels, is a lawyer needed? I dread the thought of wasting time and money on what should be an HOA obligation to owners. Thanks for any advice.
AugustinD


Posts:1937


05/01/2021 7:54 AM  
Disputes about short term rentals (STRs) come up a lot here. I feel your pain in having STRs at your condo, especially since it appears the CCRs prohibit these.

Your condo is subject to FS 718, correct? If so, go to http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&URL=0700-0799/0718/0718.html . Scroll down to section 718.1255. Notice in particular for now the sub-section that says, "Prior to the institution of court litigation, a party to a dispute shall petition the division for nonbinding arbitration. " The "division" is the Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes of the Department of Business and Professional Regulation. If you go to the division's web site, I believe you can turn up forms asking for arbitration.

Start with a demand letter to enforce the covenants against STRs; requiring two-year leases; and with the 10% cap. Yes, send it certified mail, return receipt requested.
GerryW1
(Florida)

Posts:122


05/01/2021 8:01 AM  
Thanks much for the information.
TimB4
(Tennessee)

Posts:17856


05/01/2021 8:24 AM  
i expect that you will need to take the legal route and involve attorneys and, perhaps, the courts.

Down load the advertisements on AB&B to show that the property is being offered this way.
This will be your proof if you need to go to court.
GerryW1
(Florida)

Posts:122


05/01/2021 8:36 AM  
Tx. I sent the Board/management 3 AirBNB ads, and apt number of one. One person has the audacity to rent out single rooms in their unit, for nightly rentals. It’s insane. I have copies/documentation. The more problematic ones are the many rentals which are less than a year, or not documented w leases. This is occurring on many floors in 3 high rise buildings.
KerryL1
(California)

Posts:8734


05/01/2021 9:04 AM  
What size IS your HOA, Gerry? It sounds like you have at least one onsite property manager. Do you have more than that? Aren't they supposed to keep track of rules & CC&rs violations?

Do you know offhand what % your HOA is owner-occupied?
GerryW1
(Florida)

Posts:122


05/01/2021 9:46 AM  
Hi Kerry. We have an on-site management company and security. They are very slow to respond to any of these issues. The same AirBNB ads have been there for years. Believe it or not, we were in the pool this week, and a person doing a 30 day Air BNB called security to ask questions about some logistical issue w her unit. She has no idea it was illegal. According to recent info, it is 90% owner occupied (IN THEORY). There is no way to know actual number. Many snowbirds have left, many units have residents with no documentation/leases. 750 units in 3 high rise condos. It’s a joke.
GerryW1
(Florida)

Posts:122


05/01/2021 9:50 AM  
https://abnb.me/2dtaWvgGIfb

This is an example of one of the AirBNBs. I’ve never heard of individual room rentals in a gated condo. Insanity.
JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:11667


05/01/2021 9:50 AM  
Gerry

You keep talking about management problems but I ask, where is you BOD in all this? The BOD hires the management company.
GerryW1
(Florida)

Posts:122


05/01/2021 9:55 AM  
https://abnb.me/nhwXWvUpUfb
I meant to put this one. Single room while owner is there.
GerryW1
(Florida)

Posts:122


05/01/2021 9:57 AM  
The Board dumps it on the management company. The management company does a cursory review, says something like they don’t have enough info, or it’s confidential, and we never see a change. One group is subletting from a renter. The police showed up looking for the original renter, who was in NJ. The group renting does drugs daily, walks around without masks in elevators with senior citizens. It’s criminal.
AugustinD


Posts:1937


05/01/2021 9:59 AM  
Posted By GerryW1 on 05/01/2021 9:57 AM
The group renting does drugs daily, walks around without masks in elevators with senior citizens. It’s criminal.
I agree. I am sorry you have to fight this battle. I think it will not be easy. I would be thinking of selling and moving.
GerryW1
(Florida)

Posts:122


05/01/2021 10:08 AM  
Thanks. We are considering selling soon. So many issues. 1-2 elevators (of 3) working during this Covid year. Major assessment, which is good, should improve infrastructure w 3+million in elevators, pool area etc. But security was sacrificed, and that is my primary concern going forward. We have a guard booth with gates, but the renters have figured out proper buzzwords with their owners to enter.
LetA
(Nevada)

Posts:1469


05/01/2021 10:37 AM  
You can start by reporting to AirBnb that the unit in question is an illegal rental and violates the CC&R's and see where that gets you. You can file an official complaint with your local code enforcement. You can pay your personal attorney to have a strongly worded letter to your HOA board, property manager. Security unfortunately is only relegated to their post orders. I was a guard at a high-rise condo and they had a zero policy on sublets including STR. I can't tell you how many times owners would want to leave their unity keys with the front desk. If owners had visitors a unit key was left with security by the HOA..

If you are a guard gated complex, sounds like you can refuse entry to non owners and non renters. STR's can be a huge mess for security to manage, don't be surprised if your security provider wants to up their prices to manage your STR mess.
JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:11667


05/01/2021 11:35 AM  
Gerry

If you are considering selling, I suggest zip lip and sell. Especially do not start any legal action if selling.
GerryW1
(Florida)

Posts:122


05/01/2021 12:56 PM  
Thanks. I tried AirBNB, they just send a standard thank you, but listings persist. Y, the guard gate area seems like logical place to stop much of it, but some colossal failure to deter anyone except essential workers. It’s like they need a former military or law enforcement person to create procedures and ensure they’re followed.
GerryW1
(Florida)

Posts:122


05/01/2021 1:12 PM  
May not be for 6-12 months, and would prefer to motivate rather than get into a prolonged cost-ineffective process. It’s bad when one feels compelled to move due to Bylaws not being observed. We just left the large community pool, people smoking, drinking while in the pool, music blasting. . Not one security guy went by for the 2.5 hours we were there. In my heart, I really couldn’t care less about people having fun, especially w Covid year evolving, but the blatant violations are slaps in the face.
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:10595


05/01/2021 6:44 PM  
Let me throw some cold water on all of this. What actions do you think the HOA or management company can legally actually do? Just because it is "restricted" doesn't mean there are any punishments in place to enforce. What actual actions can a HOA make? Can they fine? They can't kick the renter out. They don't own the property. The only thing they can do is hold the owner's feet to the ground for the renters violations.

If it was me, I would suggest owner's put in their lease agreements renter must obey the HOA's rules or they can cancel the lease agreement. This isn't in most lease agreements. This caveat would protect all parties involved. However, that is an option not a requirement unless it's put into the rules. However, the HOA/PM being a 3rd party to any lease agreements can only suggest.

Former HOA President
GerryW1
(Florida)

Posts:122


05/01/2021 7:09 PM  
The CC&RS and rules are very detailed specifically not allowing subletting. Additionally, all leases must be approved by the Association. So everything is in place to fine, cancel the lease, etc. In fact, having just read the documents for the first time in awhile, I have to say I have never seen such strict and comprehensive terminology about leases and subleasing. So again, going back to my original question, in addition to legal notices, certified letters, contacting sites recommended above by some, seems like we’re back to how to deal with a Board which has given up on this front, and an impotent management co.
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