Governor Ron DeSantis has recently enacted a bill aimed at curbing controversial enforcement practices by homeowner associations (HOAs) and enhancing their transparency. This new legislation, set to take effect on July 1, introduces a variety of measures designed to protect homeowners and ensure fair treatment.

Key Provisions of the New Law

Restrictions on Fines

HOAs can no longer fine homeowners for not bringing in a trash can within 24 hours before or after collection time. Additionally, holiday decoration fines can only be issued if a written notice is provided first.

Transparency and Accountability

Homeowners must receive a 14-day written notice of their right to a hearing to contest violation notices. Post-hearing, the HOA must notify the homeowner of the findings within seven days, outlining how to pay any fines or serve suspensions. Homeowners have 30 days after this notice to pay the fine. If the violation is corrected before the hearing or within the notice period, no fines or suspensions will be imposed.

Education Requirements

HOA directors and community association managers are now required to undergo education every two years, covering financial literacy, transparency, record-keeping, and meeting requirements. Newly elected board members have 90 days to complete these courses.

Criminal Penalties

The law introduces criminal penalties for HOA members and directors who intentionally block access to official records. Accepting or soliciting kickbacks is now a third-degree felony, and aiding election fraud is a first-degree misdemeanor.

Digital Transparency

HOAs with 100 or more parcels must create a website to post digital copies of official records, which must be downloadable to mobile devices. Contact information for management companies must also be published online.

Vehicle and Property Regulations

The new law prohibits HOAs from banning work vehicles with signage or personal pickup trucks from parking in driveways or community parking lots. It also restricts HOAs from regulating non-visible installations like central air conditioning units if they are similar to previously approved systems.

Legislative Journey

The bill was unanimously approved by both the House and Senate in March. Introduced by state Rep. Tiffany Esposito, the bill is part of a series of reforms following the arrests of five Miami-Dade residents accused of embezzling millions in HOA fees. The law aims to prevent such abuses and ensure that homeowners’ investments are protected.

Rep. Esposito emphasized that these reforms represent some of the strongest in state history, highlighting the importance of transparency and accountability within HOAs.

Community Reactions

Carlos Villalobos, a Hammocks homeowner, praised the bill as a positive step forward, particularly for its provisions on record access and election safeguards. However, he expressed concerns that it does not fully empower the Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) to pursue bad actors or mandate annual audits of HOA records.

Lobbyist Influence

Despite significant reforms, some proposed measures did not make it into the final bill, including a ban on liens for unpaid fines related to landscaping and traffic violations and a requirement for a 75% homeowner approval for significant assessment increases. Lobbyists for the Community Association Institute and management companies successfully negotiated changes to make the reforms more manageable for community associations.


Governor DeSantis' signing of this bill marks a significant step towards fairer and more transparent HOA practices in Florida. While some advocates believe more could be done, the law introduces essential protections for homeowners and lays the groundwork for future improvements. For more information on this and other real estate news, feel free to contact us or visit our website.

Posted by Andy Mandel on
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