Our association recently hired a new management company. An announcement was
sent to the homeowners announcing the change. A new board initiated this action
with no input from homeowners and no discussion. I have specifically requested
information concerning our budget and if they are being paid more than our
previous company. It's been over 3 weeks and no one will respond directly to my
questions. If there was no change in management fee, I'm sure there would have
been a quick response of no increase. This stonewalling of my direct questions
is very disconcerting to me. What recourse do I have to get honest answers?
—Concerned in Coral Springs
“Typically a board does not need to obtain the owners’ approval to hire management. To the extent that you may have questions
concerning the amount that is being paid, contract terms, etc., it is my
suggestion that you send a written demand to the association asking to see the
management agreement,” says Susan P. Bakalar, a shareholder attorney at Bakalar & Associates, P.A. in Plantation.
“Florida law deems the management agreement to be an official record of the
association, which, upon request, must be made available to an owner for
inspection or photocopying. The demand should be sent by certified mail return
“The association generally has ten (10) working days from the date the request is
received to make available said record(s) for review. Failure of the
association to allow access to such records could entitle the owner to
statutory damages not to exceed $500.00.
“There is nothing in the statute that requires an association’s board to answer written questions posed by a unit owner.”