Published October 3, 2019
The article written by
the Herald brings to light the abuse that is occurring with Transfer
fees. However, the facts are the facts; the statute states you can
only charge $100, so that’s what needs to be charged. In no way am I
agreeing that the fee is adequate to cover expenses; however, since
the cost is delineated in the law, it should be strictly followed.
associations crossing the line with these fees?
Simple answer… to
generate an additional income stream for the association. Are they
going about it the right way, NO they are not; however, they are
just following the trend we see in society (pay per use.) Most
tenants don't treat the property with the same care that an owner
does, thus causing more operational/maintenance cost to the
building. Add to that the Airbnb issues most buildings are dealing
with and the maintenance cost compound. Boards are trying to
compensate for that abuse and charging it to the suspected abuser
rather than owner/investor. It doesn’t justify the action, but, we
need to know where it is coming from to fix the problem.
associatied to process applications.
In 1990 minium wage in Florida was $3.80 and in 2019 minimum wage is
$8.46. That’s a 220% increase over the past twenty-nine years. We
are overdue for an overhaul in the fee's that are permitted to be
charged. While technology has allowed us to streamline the
application process and capture the information needed efficiently,
a human factor still exists within the application process and must
Further, they need to
eliminate the provision, which allows for married couples to pay a
single fee. A background search needs to be completed for each
individual, and the cost associated does not get reduced because a
couple is married. Also, the statute should permit an increased
amount for foreigners because those background searches are costly.
The cost associated is much more than the current application fee.
How about HOA's?
Because FS720 doesn't
make mentions of what could be charged, it's like the wild wild west
for you all; hopefully, you do what most professionals do and guide
yourself by FS718. Probably, one day we will see both FS718 & FS720
mirror each other (I'm a hopeful person) however I won't hold my
For now, I recommend
Boards to review your current pricing structure to confirm you are
charging what the law permits. If your management company is
charging the fee directly to the tenant/new owner, assure it's what
the law allows. If you aren't sure where you stand, contact your
attorney and have them prepare an opinion for your Board.