A GENERATOR BILL THAT IS LONG OVER DUE

By Eric Glazer, Esq.

Published January 22, 2024

 

I live in a great HOA.  By great, I mean you would never know there was an HOA.  Itís very hands off and it certainly seems like the owners in the community keep their houses well kept.

 

One of the things I was allowed to do several years ago was install an underground 500 gallon propane tank in my front yard and an electric generator in my back yard. I simply got tired of losing electricity during and after a storm.

 

Itís actually hard to believe that there is no law in our Florida HOAs that would allow a home owner to install their own electrical generator with above ground or below ground gas tanks.  Here we are, living in Florida with sometimes unbearable heat and humidity, we have a large elderly population, hurricanes generally hit in the hottest parts of the year, and yet there is no right to install an electric generator in your home.  I can tell you that some HOAs simply wonít allow it, no matter what.

 

I have been asked by Jan Bergemann from Cyber Citizens for Justice to draft a bill that The Florida Legislature can hopefully enact.  Since our law firm drafted the bill that allows owners of electric vehicles to install a charging station in their parking spot, I modeled the electric generator statute after that.  Let me know what you think:

 

720.3035(6) INSTALLATION OF GENERATORS AND FUEL TANKS

The Florida Legislature acknowledges that The State of Florida is subject tropical storms and hurricanes.  When a storm strikes any area of our state, there is always a likelihood that homeowners will lose power for a significant period of time.  This results in making living difficult and dangerous as storms of this nature  typically strike in the hottest months of the year and the loss of air conditioning may be detrimental to the health of the residents of this state.  Furthermore, loss of power also means the loss of the residents of this state to stay informed of safety measures and warnings being promulgated by officials in the state, county or local municipality.  Therefore:

1.      No covenant, restriction, bylaw, rule or requirement of an association shall prohibit a homeowner from installing a permanent hard-wired generator with either buried gas tanks or above ground gas tanks.

2.      If an owner desires to install a permanent hard-wired generator, the installation of such a permanent hard-wired generator with either buried gas tanks or above ground gas tanks is subject to the following provisions: 

(a) The installation may not cause irreparable damage to the homeowner association property.

(b)  The owner shall be liable for the cost of the installation and operation, maintenance, and repair, including, but not limited to, hazard and liability insurance.

(c)   If the owner or his or her successor decides there is no longer a need for the generator and fuel tanks, such person is responsible for the cost of removal.  The association may enforce payment of such costs under s. 720.3085.

(d)  The lot owner installing, maintaining, or removing the generator and fuel tanks is responsible for complying with all federal, state, or local laws and regulations applicable to such installation, maintenance, or removal.

3.      The association may require the lot owner to:

a. Comply with bona fide safety requirements, consistent with applicable building codes or recognized safety standards, for the protection of persons and property.

b. Comply with reasonable architectural standards adopted by the association that govern the dimensions, placement, or external appearance of the tanks and generator provided that such standards may not prohibit the installation of such generator and fuel tanks or substantially increase the cost thereof.

c. Engage the services of a licensed and registered firm familiar with the installation or removal and core requirements of a generator and fuel tanks;

d. Provide a certificate of insurance naming the association as an additional insured on the ownerís insurance policy for any claim related to the installation, maintenance, or use of the generator or fuel tanks within 14 days after receiving the associationís approval to install such generator and fuel tanks or notice to provide such a certificate.

e. Reimburse the association for the actual cost of any increased insurance premium amount attributable to the installation of a generator and fuel tanks within 14 days after receiving the associationís insurance premium invoice. 

4.   The association provides an implied easement across the common elements of the association property to the lot owner for purposes of installing or maintaining their generator and fuel tanks, including any necessary equipment, to such generator and fuel tanks, subject to the requirements of this subsection.

 

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About HOA & Condo Blog

Eric Glazer

Eric Glazer graduated from the University of Miami School of Law in 1992 after receiving a B.A. from NYU. He has practiced community association law for three decades and is the owner of Glazer and Sachs, P.A. a five attorney law firm with offices in Fort Lauderdale and Orlando.

Eric is Board Certified by The Florida Bar in Condominium and Planned Development Law.

Since 2009, Eric has been the host of Condo Craze and HOAs, a weekly one-hour radio show airing at 11 a.m. each Sunday on 850 WFTL. Recently, he moved the show to YouTube, transforming it into a more dynamic and interactive experience. This move not only allows viewers to engage in live chats with Eric and other participants but also enables a broader audience to access free advice, making valuable insights more widely available.

See: www.condocrazeandhoas.com.

   

Eric is the first attorney in the State of Florida that designed a course that certifies condominium and HOA residents as eligible to serve on a Board of Directors and has now certified more than 20,000 Floridians all across the state. He is certified as a Circuit Court Mediator by The Florida Supreme Court and has mediated dozens of disputes between associations and unit owners. Eric also devotes significant time to advancing legislation in the best interest of Florida community association members.



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