Imagine a world where accountants can examine your heart and give you an opinion regarding its condition and your life expectancy. Suppose an auto mechanic can examine your kidneys and liver and give his opinion on whether or not they are healthy. Perhaps one day you can walk into my office and one of the attorneys here can take your blood and talk to you about your blood pressure, sugar and cholesterol. If this all sounds crazy, it should. This is exactly how the health of our buildings are determined. Not by qualified experts like architects, engineers and general contractors, but by former cab drivers, teachers, nurses and the like. Now these people may be the absolute best in their trained professions, but they certainly are not qualified to make a determination of the condition of the condominium property and the life expectancy of things like the roof, structure and electrical systems. Yet, this is what is going on in Florida as we speak.
For about a two year period of time, condominiums were required to have a reserve study performed by an architect or engineer. But in 2010 Governor Charlie Crist signed a bill which repealed that requirement. So since then, the reserve study analysis can be performed by the butcher, baker and candle stick maker.
We all know that the analysis is a joke. If a new Board comes in that wants to save money and decrease assessments, suddenly the roof has a greater life expectancy than before. Somehow, like fine wine, the roof got better with age. It’s a miracle!
The current law is dangerous on so many levels. It’s so obvious that it would be insulting to all of you to even have to explain further.
Next legislative session I urge all of you to contact your legislators and demand that Florida Statute 718 be amended to again require that reserve studies be performed by an architect or engineer. Unless your Board has an architect or engineer serving, the Board is simply not qualified to do the analysis.