A TOTAL DISASTER!
REGULATION COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION MANAGERS
Open Letter By Jan Bergemann
Published November 7, 2007
With all due respect, if you are attempting to destroy the profession of the community association manager, you are definitely on the right track. For many years complaints against CAMs have been piling up, but it seems that the DBPR is only too willing to bury the problems and let the guilty parties get away with it.
are serious cases pending against licensed CAMs since 2002!
-- and still no real action is being taken. There have been
court rulings claiming that a CAM fraudulently collected dues – but
the DBPR is “still working on it,” much to the detriment of the
owners who get further harassed by a licensed
are many CAMs who are trying to take over the communities, run
roughshod over owners, and board members who try to sort out certain
problems – or just call the police on them. A
practice? No problem: If you are caught after a few years – most
likely you receive only a “cease and desist order.” Then you can
still take the exam and obtain a license. Who cares that you had
previously violated the laws for many years?
you really get caught with some serious violations and lose your
license? No problem! Make the Department jump through hoops before
taking away your license. In the mean time have your wife get a
license and you can continue to work under her license -- and continue
doing the same bad tricks as before.
a president gets caught working without a license after getting paid
as a general manager for many years and receives a cease and desist
order? No problem: Just make the claim that he is now working as a
“secretary” – for the same salary -- and the DBPR will just go
requests by board members? Only if you follow the party line! Board
members are being forced to make long trips to offices of management
companies, only to be turned down for failure to make an appointment!
never existed or couldn’t be found? Great excuse if president and
manager live together and always blame the other if it comes to
Division Bureau of Compliance and CAM Regulation don’t communicate
with each other, it works like a charm.
interfering with elections and trying to unseat officers who dare to
speak out against practices of CAMs? Happens all the time!
a board really gets mad and fires the
list goes on and on! We have plenty of bad examples on the website and
we have written many letters and e-mails – for many years – to the
Department asking for stricter enforcement. Result:
It has only gotten worse! People
are laughing about the enforcement and even stop filing complaints –
considering it a waste of paper!
Is that the whole idea?
and board members are getting frustrated and are looking for other
solutions. One solution more and more favored recently: Hire a CPA for
the financial dealings and self-manage! Saves lots of money and lots
lack of regulation and enforcement damages the business of the honest
CAMs – and the management companies that are really trying hard to
do their job. Boards and owners should be able to rely on the fact
that community association managers are licensed, regulated, and have
professional knowledge of the subject.
shouldn’t go so far that a
*Below is an index of the locations where some of these issues quoted took place. If you like more detailed information about the cases quoted, please contact me!
are really only two solutions to the matter:
-- OR --
You deregulate CAMs and remove the provisions from the statutes that
forces mandatory associations to hire licensed managers.
members and owners are under the impression that they hire
knowledgeable professionals worth the money they are paying. Only
too often these so-called “professionals” turn out to be dictators
who try to take over the association.
that is what you are trying to achieve – go right ahead the way you
are doing business. Otherwise,
if your intention is to provide professionals with integrity to manage
associations, then please create the necessary changes and remove the
many bad apples from your list of licensed CAMs.
TO THE EXISTING SYSTEM ARE DESPERATELY NEEDED TO PROTECT THE WELFARE
Index of location of cases
TERRACE OWNERS ASSOCIATION, INC.
PLACE II CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATION, INC.
GARDENS TOWNHOUSE HOMEOWNERS ASSOCIATION, INC.
VISTA CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATION, INC.
CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATION, INC.
CAY CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATION, INC.
20 PROPERTY OWNER'S ASSOCIATION, INC.
VILLAGE OF KINGS CREEK CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATION, INC.
VILLAS OF BOCA BARWOOD HOMEOWNERS' ASSOCIATION, INC.
VILLAS OF NARANJA CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATION, INC.
THIRD BAYSHORE CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATION, INC
OF SANDALWOOD LAKES SOUTH HOMEOWNERS ASSOCIATION, INC.