By Jan Bergemann

Published May 11, 2018


Florida, nicely called the Sunshine State, but what about all the hurricanes? We have been hit by many “infamous” hurricanes over the years – just remember the names “Wilma” and “Irma”?


Insurance premiums are very expensive, especially for high-rise condominiums.


And many board members, in order to prevent increases of the maintenance fees, chose high deductibles in order to keep the premiums as low as possible. But that means, in case of more hurricane damage in the coming years, that the association has to be prepared to pay a big amount of money to cover the deductible. Especially Wilma in 2005 taught us that many associations are ill prepared for paying the deductible.


Huge special assessments had to be levied after Wilma to pay for the deductibles – and families lost their homes because they didn’t have the money to pay for the special assessment.


If boards chose big deductibles they better have well-stocked reserve funds to cover the amounts needed for the deductibles. Does your association have well-funded reserves.


Is your association well prepared for another hurricane disaster?

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Jan Bergemann Jan Bergemann is president of Cyber Citizens For Justice, Florida 's largest state-wide property owners' advocacy group. CCFJ works on legislation to help owners living in community  

associations. He moved to Florida in 1995 - hoping to retire. He moved into a HOA, where the developer cheated the homeowners and used the association dues for his own purposes. End of retirement!


CCFJ was born in the year 2000, when some owners met in Tallahassee - finding out that power is only in numbers. Bergemann was a member of Governor Jeb Bush's HOA Task force in 2003/2004.


The organization has two websites to inform interested Florida homeowners and condo owners:

News Website:

Educational Website:

We think that only owners can really represent owners, since all service providers surely have a different interest! We are trying to create owner-friendly laws, but the best laws are useless without enforcement. And enforcement is totally lacking in Florida !

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