Florida Condominium Information
Many people are searching for information regarding Florida condominium law, safety requirements, inspections, and reserve studies. The tragic collapse of the Champlain Towers South condominium building in June 2021 caused many people to ask why this happened. The majority of discussions have revolved around mandating structural inspections (a good idea) and both mandating reserve studies (another good idea) and mandating funding of reserves (probably a good idea but involves serious financial and social issues). However, I will repeat here what I have said at least dozens (and perhaps hundreds) of times since June of 2021 - Inspections don't stop buildings from falling down. Reserve studies don't stop buildings from falling down. Maintenance is the ONLY thing that stops buildings from falling down.
From our perspective the biggest question people are failing to ask relates to the impact of a comprehensive maintenance program on building safety, reducing life cycle maintenance costs, and extending the useful life of various components. At Facilities Advisors we have promoted the importance of preventive maintenance for decades. When you read the governing documents of any condominium association you always see wording such as "preserve, maintain, repair, and improve" related to association common areas as being the PRIMARY function of the association. Given that primary purpose It seems ironic that virtually no associations have a comprehensive maintenance plan, meaning the schedule of what maintenance procedures SHOULD BE performed. All associations have a maintenance program, meaning whatever maintenance they are actually performing. But, because of the lack of a formal maintenance plan most associations don't know what actual maintenance procedures should be performed..
Facilities Advisors International CEO Gary Porter holds a number of credentials related to our services for associations, including RS (Reserve Specialist), CPA (Certified Public Accountant), FMP (Facilities Management Professional) and RRC (Registered Reserve Consultant). With respect to the maintenance issue, Mr. Porter's FMP credential, issued by the International Facility Management Association (IFMA), is important as it designates him as a maintenance professional who has completed a course of study in facilities maintenance management and passed a comprehensive examination on each or the modules comprising that course of education. Just as you relay on qualified professionals (architects and structural engineers) to perform structural inspections you should only rely on qualified maintenance professionals to create a maintenance plan. Facilities Advisors has been preparing maintenance plans for years, under the supervision of Gary Porter. Please contact Pierre Del Rosario in our Facilities Advisors Florida office for further information regarding our maintenance plan services.
Below we have linked several documents related to Florida condominiums and the ongoing discussions regarding building safety, inspections, and reserve studies.
The Structural Integrity Reserve Study (a/k/a, the paragraph (g) items). A residential condominium association must have a structural integrity reserve study completed at least every ten (10) years after the condominium’s creation for each building on the condominium property that is three (3) stories or higher in height, as determined by the Florida building code, which includes, at a minimum, the study of the following items as related to the structural integrity and safety of the building: a) Roof; b) Structure, including load bearing walls and other primary structural members, and primary structural systems as those terms are defined in §627.706, Fla. Stat.; c) Fire proofing and fire protection systems; d) Plumbing; e) Electrical systems; f) Waterproofing and exterior painting; KBR’s Rembaum's Association Roundup www.KBRLegal.com 9 g) Windows and exterior doors; h) And any other item that has a deferred maintenance expense or replacement cost that exceeds $10,000 and the failure to replace or maintain such item negatively affects the items listed above as determined by the visual inspection portion of the structural integrity reserve study. With the aforementioned revisions to the structural integrity reserve study, it is clarified that commercial condominiums are exempt from the SIRS requirements. In addition, the terms “floor” and “foundation” were removed from the items needed to be included in the structural integrity reserve study but, however, are also potentially part of the “Structure”. §718.112, Fla. Stat.