By Jan Bergemann

Published July 13, 2018


Restricting the number of people living in a condo/home is pretty tricky for any community association. When trying, they have to be aware of various Fair Housing laws that regulate the occupancy of a home/condo.


Remember: Especially in condos the monthly maintenance fees often includes water/sewage and is billed by unit – not by the number of people occupying the unit. That creates an absolute unfair billing, considering that ten people definitely use a lot more water than just two folks. But the maintenance fees are the same – meaning the two folks pay as well for the use of the ten people. And with the cost of water/sewage – especially in the South Florida areas – it definitely creates a financial injustice.


Nevertheless, Fair Housing laws can be very dangerous to navigate – and violations of these laws can be very costly for the associations trying trying to regulate the number of occupants in homes/condos.


But these associations may consider looking at the county/city ordinances regulating the occupancy of homes/condos. Most counties/cities have occupancy rules – often even explaining the meaning of “FAMILY” – that describe in detail who can – and who cannot – occupy homes/condos.


Instead of making up their own rules – risking violations of the Fair Housing laws – association boards should consider using these ordinances as samples for creating rules.


That may protect the association against possible lawsuits – and may save a lot of money in the long run.

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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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