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Subject: Sub-Association passing conflicting bylaws
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LoriM15
(Florida)

Posts:49


11/06/2021 1:01 AM  
We are a large master association with three condo sub-associations. We found out (alerted by a condo owner) that one of the condo associations has proposed a 30-day minimum rental period in their new documents that are to be approved at their annual meeting in a couple of weeks. The master bylaws only allow minimum 90-day leases. The condo owner who alerted us was told by the president of the condo association that it was a mistake but they are going to go ahead and pass the new bylaws, then tell the residents at a later date that it was a mistake. The condo property manager (not the same as the master) approves this route.

Realistically, there won’t be any short leases because the master has final approval. But is there something the master needs to do to officially let condo owners know there is a conflict?
CathyA3
(Ohio)

Posts:2588


11/06/2021 7:53 AM  
Posted By LoriM15 on 11/06/2021 1:01 AM
We are a large master association with three condo sub-associations. We found out (alerted by a condo owner) that one of the condo associations has proposed a 30-day minimum rental period in their new documents that are to be approved at their annual meeting in a couple of weeks. The master bylaws only allow minimum 90-day leases. The condo owner who alerted us was told by the president of the condo association that it was a mistake but they are going to go ahead and pass the new bylaws, then tell the residents at a later date that it was a mistake. The condo property manager (not the same as the master) approves this route.

Realistically, there won’t be any short leases because the master has final approval. But is there something the master needs to do to officially let condo owners know there is a conflict?



Did the president say why he/she thinks that passing the new bylaw and then announcing later that it was a mistake is a good idea?

I can't for the life of me see what good this will accomplish. It will confuse owners and call into question the board's competence. These are Not Good Things in my book.

(Cathy adjusts her Conspiracy Theorist Hat at a jaunty angle) Does someone on the board want to do a short-term rental during this period and assuming it will be done by the time the master bylaws catch up to it? Of course this makes the board look shady in addition to incompetent. And the PM isn't looking too good in my book either.

If you want to unseat the current board for some reason, they've just handed you a dandy campaign issue.
KerryL1
(California)

Posts:8720


11/06/2021 9:33 AM  
You're on the master assn. Board, Lori? Is the prez you mention prez of the master assn. or of the sub assn. in question? That's just not very clear to me.

Can the sub-assn. board vote for this 30 day limit? Or does it require sub. assn. owners vote? And also a vote by the master. assn. board? Or owners?

You say the 30-day limit is in the Bylaws, but that sounds different than what we usually see here. Usually these rental time-limit restrictions are in the CC&Rs. What do your master assoc. CC&Rs say about this topic?


With Cathy, I can't see anything positive coming from this.
AugustinD


Posts:1905


11/06/2021 9:51 AM  
Posted By LoriM15 on 11/06/2021 1:01 AM
We are a large master association with three condo sub-associations. We found out (alerted by a condo owner) that one of the condo associations has proposed a 30-day minimum rental period in their new documents that are to be approved at their annual meeting in a couple of weeks. The master bylaws only allow minimum 90-day leases. The condo owner who alerted us was told by the president of the condo association that it was a mistake but they are going to go ahead and pass the new bylaws, then tell the residents at a later date that it was a mistake. The condo property manager (not the same as the master) approves this route.

Realistically, there won’t be any short leases because the master has final approval. But is there something the master needs to do to officially let condo owners know there is a conflict?
First, can you confirm that the master association and sub association contain this rental restriction in the Bylaws? Like KerryL1 says, I would have expected the restriction to be in the covenants.

Second, what are the requirements to amend the sub-association's bylaws (or CC&Rs) on this point? Can the Board do this without owners' approval? (I would think this requires a vote of owners, but I would like LoriM15 to confirm.)

Third, LoriM15, I advise you to quote the verbiage in both the Master and Sub Associations Bylaws/CCRs concerning conflicts between the Master Association's Bylaws/CCRs and the Sub Association's Bylaws/CCRs.

Fourth are the sub-associations subject to the Florida Condo Act FS 718?

Fifth, is the master association subject to FS 720, FS 718, or both?
LoriM15
(Florida)

Posts:49


11/06/2021 10:53 AM  
It’s actually a pretty juicy story. The president of this condo association used to be the president of the master association also. Our bylaws don’t prohibit being on both boards. But he started approving projects that benefited only the condos and when other board members protested he got offended. Then he decided the master property manager wronged him in some way and did an unauthorized “performance review”. He finally resigned when the rest of the board refused to go along with a landscaping project for the condos. Unfortunately he doesn’t seem to be mentally well. So there may be a back story and he or one of his friends does want a short term rental. The strange part is that he and his property manager (who he feels can do no wrong) went in person to speak to the owner who reported the rule change. I think they were worried it would “look bad” if they were found to make a mistake and didn’t want a paper trail in email.

As I said, the master has to approve all leases so unless they try to sneak a 30-day lease by somehow it probably won’t happen. And the ultimate control is that the master runs all the gates. On the day a lease expires the cards and codes expire also.
AugustinD


Posts:1905


11/06/2021 11:00 AM  
Posted By LoriM15 on 11/06/2021 10:53 AM
As I said, the master has to approve all leases
To me, this does not necessarily mean the master can disapprove a lease that is 30 days.
LoriM15
(Florida)

Posts:49


11/06/2021 11:08 AM  
Posted By AugustinD on 11/06/2021 9:51 AM
Posted By LoriM15 on 11/06/2021 1:01 AM
We are a large master association with three condo sub-associations. We found out (alerted by a condo owner) that one of the condo associations has proposed a 30-day minimum rental period in their new documents that are to be approved at their annual meeting in a couple of weeks. The master bylaws only allow minimum 90-day leases. The condo owner who alerted us was told by the president of the condo association that it was a mistake but they are going to go ahead and pass the new bylaws, then tell the residents at a later date that it was a mistake. The condo property manager (not the same as the master) approves this route.

Realistically, there won’t be any short leases because the master has final approval. But is there something the master needs to do to officially let condo owners know there is a conflict?
First, can you confirm that the master association and sub association contain this rental restriction in the Bylaws? Like KerryL1 says, I would have expected the restriction to be in the covenants.

Second, what are the requirements to amend the sub-association's bylaws (or CC&Rs) on this point? Can the Board do this without owners' approval? (I would think this requires a vote of owners, but I would like LoriM15 to confirm.)

Third, LoriM15, I advise you to quote the verbiage in both the Master and Sub Associations Bylaws/CCRs concerning conflicts between the Master Association's Bylaws/CCRs and the Sub Association's Bylaws/CCRs.

Fourth are the sub-associations subject to the Florida Condo Act FS 718?

Fifth, is the master association subject to FS 720, FS 718, or both?




Unfortunately I am on vacation and don’t have access this moment to the documents. I believe you are correct and the rental restriction is in the master covenant and not the bylaws. I have not seen the condo documents. The condo board has proposed this change and membership will be voting at a meeting next week. I would be surprised if the new documents don’t pass. I believe this is why they are keeping the mistake quiet. If they had amended the proposed documents then they would have had to mail them again and notice according to the Florida statute.

The condo is under statute 718. The master is under 720.

The reason I believe the new documents will pass is that it’s a small condo association and they pretty much do what the condo board suggests.

To clear up things, I am president of the master association. We have a board of five directors that are elected. All are “at large”. So different parts of the neighborhood are not guaranteed representation. All homes and condos are in the master association. Only the condos have separate sub associations. Each condo association has a separate five member board of directors.

My concern is that condo owners will be caught in this mess. I’m wondering if we should have our attorney send an official letter pointing out the conflict.
AugustinD


Posts:1905


11/06/2021 11:18 AM  
Posted By LoriM15 on 11/06/2021 11:08 AM
I’m wondering if we should have our attorney send an official letter pointing out the conflict.
Or your HOA may want to see if the HOA attorney confirms there is a bona fide conflict and what state law, the master and sub's docs say about resolving this conflict?

Some times folks perceive a conflict in covenants when in fact there is none.

You may have a better grasp on the facts than I, of course. The above is me "just saying."
CathyA3
(Ohio)

Posts:2588


11/06/2021 11:22 AM  
Yup, it's juicy. And of course the pres and PM made it even worse by talking one-on-one to the owner who reported this. If I were on the board, I'd consider this a good reason to be looking for a new PM since I question the person's judgement.

It's an interesting question whether or not the condo CC&Rs can override the master CC&Rs (either more or less restrictive). I can see reasons why condos should be more restrictive due to housing density and shared building infrastructure - not sure that I see any justification for them being less restrictive. The answer to this may tell us whether or not the master association can say "no" to the 30-day lease.

With luck this whole business has gotten derailed since the story is now out there and there are sure to be condo owners who would object. Not the kind of thing you want to blow up before an annual meeting...
KerryL1
(California)

Posts:8720


11/06/2021 1:45 PM  
While you don't have access right now to your master. assn covenants, please review them to se if there's a clause that says all Articles apply to the sub. assns. too. Or not.

IF the 90 day limit is in the master. assn CC&Rs, and IF these CC&Rs supersede the docs of the sub-assns., I do not see how any sub assoc. can "overturn" that restriction and change it to 30 days.
MaxB4
(California)

Posts:1594


11/06/2021 2:50 PM  
Posted By KerryL1 on 11/06/2021 1:45 PM
While you don't have access right now to your master. assn covenants, please review them to se if there's a clause that says all Articles apply to the sub. assns. too. Or not.

IF the 90 day limit is in the master. assn CC&Rs, and IF these CC&Rs supersede the docs of the sub-assns., I do not see how any sub assoc. can "overturn" that restriction and change it to 30 days.



She's on vacation.
KerryL1
(California)

Posts:8720


11/06/2021 3:47 PM  
Max, what's the point of your post? I suggest that Lori review them when she DOES have access.
LetA
(Nevada)

Posts:1462


11/07/2021 3:19 PM  
From what I have seen, Condos and townhouses typicaly have different rules than single family homes. When you have a mixed use property, The master association will have a master set of covenants, and each
sub association wil have covenants that will differ from the other sub. The only areas I see covenants differ from another sub is parking and trash, parking being the more heavier governed.
JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:11659


11/08/2021 8:16 AM  
Cathy hit the nail on the head when she said:

It's an interesting question whether or not the condo CC&Rs can override the master CC&Rs (either more or less restrictive). I can see reasons why condos should be more restrictive due to housing density and shared building infrastructure - not sure that I see any justification for them being less restrictive. The answer to this may tell us whether or not the master association can say "no" to the 30-day lease.

This is my thinking.
LoriM15
(Florida)

Posts:49


11/10/2021 12:05 PM  
I was finally able to get to our master declaration documents. Here is the relevant section:

ARTICLE 14
MASTER ASSOCIATION AND CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATIONS
14.1 Preamble. In order to ensure the orderly operation and maintenance of XXXXXX and the properties subject to the administration of the Condominium Associations as integrated parts of XXXXXX, this Article has been promulgated for the purposes of (1) giving the Master Association certain powers to effectuate such goal, (2) providing for intended (but not guaranteed) economies of scale and (3) establishing the framework of the mechanism through which the foregoing may be accomplished.
14.2 Cumulative Effect; Conflict. The covenants, restrictions and provisions of this Master Declaration shall be cumulative with those of the declarations of condominium for the Condominium Associations; provided, however, that in the event of conflict between or among any such covenants, restrictions and provisions, or any Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws, rules and regulations, policies or practices adopted or carried out pursuant thereto, those of the Condominium Associations shall be subject and subordinate to this Master Declaration. The foregoing priorities shall apply, but not be limited to, the liens for Assessments created in favor of the Master Association, and the Condominium Associations (as provided in Article 6 hereof).

I also spoke to our master association attorney. He says it may be confusing for the condo residents, but the master has the power because we have to approve all leases and won't approve any term less than 90 days. He also said that Florida Statute 718 requires a one-page FAQ document and that the condo association should address the leasing term conflict in that. However, since the president of the condo association is so difficult to deal with, I'm not going to even bother to communicate with him about this.
AugustinD


Posts:1905


11/10/2021 12:15 PM  
Posted By LoriM15 on 11/10/2021 12:05 PM
I also spoke to our master association attorney. He says it may be confusing for the condo residents, but the master has the power because we have to approve all leases and won't approve any term less than 90 days. He also said that Florida Statute 718 requires a one-page FAQ document and that the condo association should address the leasing term conflict in that. However, since the president of the condo association is so difficult to deal with, I'm not going to even bother to communicate with him about this.
Good work all around.

I would at least send the condo president the information about how the Master Association covenants rules etc. control when there is a conflict between Master and sub, and inform him the Master, through the Board will not tolerate rentals less than 30 days. I would announce this at the next Master association Board meeting, too, as an informational item to go in the Minutes.

Ignore his whining or any stupid response. After informing the Sub condo president of the Master Board's position, I think "asked and answered" is all you owe him, and only once. Do not engage him in a discussion.
AugustinD


Posts:1905


11/10/2021 12:16 PM  
Posted By AugustinD on 11/10/2021 12:15 PM
<
I would at least send the condo president the information about how the Master Association covenants rules etc. control when there is a conflict between Master and sub, and inform him the Master, through the Board will not tolerate rentals less than 30 days.
Oops. That should be "will not tolerate rentals less than 90 days."
KerryL1
(California)

Posts:8720


11/10/2021 4:53 PM  

good, Lori. I knew you'd get to the info when you were able. Austin's advice makes sense.
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