The Florida legislature recently updated condominium and co-op laws and amended the building code regarding condominium structural inspections. As a result, the FR/BAR contract RIDER A for Condominiums now references TWO NEW DOCUMENTS which Buyers of resale condos may be entitled to.Paragraph 10 of the Rider still requires the Seller to provide a copy of the Governance Form. But now the Seller may also be required to provide a:
Both new documents, if they exist, must be provided at Seller’s expense after the contract is executed and before closing.
The Milestone Inspection Report Summary is about the adequacy of structural components of a condo building for life safety purposes. The Summary the Buyer is entitled to contains material findings and recommendations of the report. Not all buyers will get a Summary – only if the building meets the criteria and the report has been submitted to the association. Buildings are required to obtain a Milestone Inspection Report if they are:
- Three (3) stories or more in height; and
- 30 years of age or more, or 25 years of age or more and located within 3 miles of the coastline.
This does not include 1, 2, or 3 family dwellings with fewer than three stories. The Inspection is required to be completed by 12/31/2024.
The Structural Integrity Reserve Study (SIRS) is a study of the condo’s reserve funds required for future major repairs, replacement, and maintenance of the common areas of a condo, and provides associations with a recommended annual reserve amount. Not all Buyers will get a SIRS – only if the building meets the criteria and it has been completed by the association. Buildings are required to obtain a SIRS if:
- The building existed on or before July 1, 2022;
- It is unit owner controlled; and
- Three (3) stories or more in height.
The SIRS is required to be completed by 12/31/2024.Not many of these reports exist right now because associations have until the end of 2024 to comply. Currently, Florida law is silent as to any consequences for parties if Buyer does not receive the Summary or SIRS, and paragraph 5 of Rider A (the right to rescind) has not changed. For Agents Representing Sellers:
- Sellers can obtain a copy of the Milestone Inspection Report Summary by requesting it from the association, in review of official records of association, or from the local building department.
- Sellers can obtain a copy of the SIRS by requesting it from the association, or when reviewing official records of the association. Alternatively, the Seller may request the SIRS by written inquiry to the board of administration. If the association has no SIRS, the seller is required to request a statement that the SIRS has not yet been completed.
- Once the Seller receives the documents, obtain a copy, and provide to Buyer once contract is executed and before closing.
- If Seller or association does not have reports, continue to monitor because Buyer is entitled to them up until closing.
For Agents Representing Buyers:
- Buyer should request the Milestone Inspection Report Summary and the SIRS as soon as the contract is executed.
- If Seller or association does not have reports, continue to request at intervals up until closing.
- If reports are provided, encourage Buyer to review and seek advice of counsel if they have questions regarding their legal rights.