By Jan Bergemann

Published June 17, 2022


The new bill, just signed by Governor Ron DeSantis into law, will require mandatory inspections for every condominium building in the state that is 3 stories or higher and at least 30 years old (25 years old if within 3 miles of the coast) to undergo a inspection, every 10 years, by a licensed architect or engineer. The legislature required these inspections to be done in two phases. You can already be pretty sure that a PHASE 1 inspection will be followed by a PHASE 2 inspection.


Sounds great and will definitely add to the safety of these buildings. But, as usual, there is always a BUT:


1.)  Are there really enough “qualified” engineers in the State of Florida, meaning engineers who are specialized in structural engineering? We all know that there are lots of licensed engineers in the State, but according to my info there are not too many engineers specialized in this field of work.


2.)  These inspections will be pretty costly – qualified engineers don’t come cheap – and many of these associations are anyway strapped for cash, since paying for reserve accounts was always voted down by the owners who always found some “excuses” for not funding reserves.


And most likely the engineering report will call for costly maintenance and repairs to the hi-rises – repairs that need to be done within a short period of time, if the association wants to avoid being red-tagged by the local building department.


Don’t ever forget: The Champlain Towers South knew two years before the collapse that the building has serious structural deficiencies. But nothing was really done due to the lack of money paying for these much needed repairs. According to reports the association needed about $16 million to pay for the required repairs, but there were only $700,000.00 in the reserve funds. The members of the association were fighting for nearly two years among each other on how to finance these repairs. We all know the outcome of this fight!


We will see many other associations fighting the same fight and I predict that many of the owners living in these hi-rises will be unable to finance the money needed for the required repairs these engineering reports will reveal.


SAFETY COMES WITH HIGH COST – and Florida’s condo owners will have to come up with the money or lose their homes.

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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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