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central florida times

WWW.CAICF.ORG | THIRD QUARTER 2018


Third Quarter 2018

contact information P.O. Box 941125 Maitland, FL 32794 www.caicf.org exdir@caicf.org 407-850-0106

2018 board of directors Lou Biron, President Ken Zook, President-Elect Erik Whynot, Esq., Vice President Michael Kulich, Treasurer Kent Taylor, PCAM, Secretary Suzan Kearns, CMCA, AMS, PCAM, Past-President Chris Martinez Frank Ruggieri, Esq. Chuck Strode, CAM Robert L. Taylor, Esq. Matt Vice

a message from the president A warm greeting to our CAI Central Florida Chapter Members! Summer has passed and fall is upon us and with the change of the seasons comes the hope for a new direction as we close on the challenges of 2018 and we budget our time and expenses towards next year. It is our goal at CAI Central Florida to assist with budgeting, management dilemmas and vendor services. To achieve this we continue to offer our timely educational programs and active networking opportunities designed to provide assistance and also demonstrate the value of your membership. As our third quarter ends we look back to see that we enjoyed our Meet the Managers program, that our Chapter representatives attended an informative CAI Statewide meeting of all Chapters to discuss coming together on joint programs in conjunction with National, and we continued our very well attended monthly meetings and educational programs. Our membership continues to grow and with sincere thanks we recognize the efforts and dedication of our many hard-working volunteers who are helping manage our direction. As you peruse this newsletter, you will see our calendar of upcoming events. We urge each of you choose those that are of interest to you, place them on your calendar and plan to attend to gain better knowledge or for your networking enjoyment. Further into the New Year, you will note the CAI Florida Leadership Forum on 2/8/19 and the Trade Show on 3/22/19. This edition of our newsletter is packed with valuable information regarding HydroRaking for Aquatic Management, Guidelines for Pursuing a Bank Loan, Chapter Disaster Relief Ideas, How to Maintain an Orderly Board Meeting, and How to Avoid Foreclosure Scams. You will always find our newsletter to be a presentation in recognition of those who serve CAI, vendor opportunities and take home and use information. Within the pages of the newsletter are ads from our vendor members. You are encouraged to consider using their services within the scope of your needs. We appreciate each of our vendor members and support their businesses throughout the year. And if you have a need not mentioned by those posting an ad, feel free to contact us for a referral to other vendor members for the service you require. It is this trade of business relationships that assures a viable and strong partnership among our membership. If you are not a member, please consider joining. If you are a member, please consider volunteering. Our growth and our viability rest with the strength of our membership and the many volunteers who help us towards our goals. We wish each of you an enjoyable fall and we will look forward to seeing you at our next event. All the best,

Lou Biron Louis R. Biron, AAI 2018 President, CAI Central Florida Chapter 2


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central florida chapter update 2018 calendar of events More details regarding upcoming events will be posted to caicf.org under the “Events” tab. Check back regularly for the most up-to-date information. CAICF Board Meetings will be held before or after each of the Monthly Meetings. Please be sure to register for all events in advance, as we need an accurate head count for space and food purposes prior to the event. Thank you for your help! • October 4th: Monthly Meeting: Luncheon - Legal Panel at Dubsdread Country Club. Bring your HOA legal questions for the experts. Registration begins at 11:30am and the program begins at 12pm. Be sure to RSVP! Luncheon sponsors include: Carpenter Electric, Paradigm Broadband Group, and AssuredPartners.

• November 1st: Monthly Meeting: Luncheon - How to Manage Your Technology Experience: Software Considerations & Data Safety” presented by Pilera Software at Ace Cafe. Registration at 11:30am and program begins at 12pm.

• October 23rd: Futurescapes for a New Tomorrow hosted by UF/IFAS Extension Pinellas County (12520 Ulmerton Road, Largo, FL 33774) from 10am-5pm. This is a great CEU opportunity for Community Association Managers.

• December 6th: Annual Meeting & Winter Gala “Gangster Bash” Casino Style at Highland Manor in Apopka from 6pm-10pm. $60 per person or $100 for two includes raffle tickets and a nice meal.

• October 26th: 8th Annual Golf Tournament at Metrowest Golf Club. Registration at 7am and shotgun start at 8am. A portion of the proceeds benefit the Sunshine Foundation Dream

• March 22nd: 2019 CA Day: Around the World at the Gaylord Palms. Education Classes: 10am-1:30pm; Trade Show: 1:30pm-5:30pm; After Party: 5:30pm-9pm.

Village. See pages 20-21 for more details.

interested in getting more involved? join a caicf committee! If you are interested in getting more involved in the chapter, joining a committee is a great thing to consider. Below are the different committees that we currently have active. Please feel free to contact any of the following committee chairs: CA Day/Trade Show Committee Gina Holbrook Premier Association Management gina.holbrook@premiermgmtcfl.com Chuck Strode Associa cstrode@community-mgmt.com Communications Committee Benjamin Isip Towers Property Management, Inc. ben@towerspropertymgmt.com Education Committee Gary van der Laan Leland Management gvanderlaan@lelandmanagement.com Phil Masi Assured Partners pmasi@assuredptr.com

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Gala Committee Lou Biron Sihle Insurance Group lbiron@sihle.com

Membership Committee Jason Martell Martell & Ozim jmartell@martellandozim.com

Golf Committee Scott Pollock Sentry Management spollock@sentrymgt.com Legislative Committee Lou Biron Sihle Insurance Group lbiron@sihle.com

Jessica Cox Leland Management jcox@lelandmanagement.com

Meet the Managers Committee Chuck Strode Associa cstrode@community-mgmt.com

Social Committee Tara Munoz Your Private Adjustor tara@yourprivateadjuster.com Sunshine Foundation Committee Jennifer Agravat Asphalt Restoration Technology Systems jennifer.agravat@asphaltnews.com


• • • • • • • • • • • •

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aquatic management EMILY WALSH, ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENTIST AT SOLITUDE LAKE MANAGEMENT

Have You Considered Hydro-raking as an Aquatic Management Tool? Pictured above (courtesy of SOLitude) Hydro-raking can be an extremely effective management tool for the removal and reduction of nuisance aquatic plants found in community lakes, stormwater ponds and private waterbodies.

C

ommunity lakes and stormwater ponds can be used to attract native wildlife, facilitate recreation and enhance the beauty of a HOA property, but, over the course of many years, these aquatic resources may experience sedimentation, nutrient loading and other water quality problems. If a waterbody is not properly managed, it will eventually fill in with muck and other organic materials until depths are significantly reduced. To help restore volume, reduce the possibility of flooding during rainstorms, and improve overall water quality, it’s important to consider hydro-raking as a proactive management tool. If you own or manage an association with lakes and ponds, you’ve likely heard of hydro-raking as a unique strategy utilized by aquatic professionals to remove aquatic vegetation and “bottom sludge.” A hydro-rake is essentially a floating barge supporting a mounted backhoe and rake attachment that can remove up to 500 pounds of lake and pond muck, plant material and organic debris in a single scoop.

and/or invasive aquatic vegetation, while conserving other areas in their natural state. This is crucial in the eyes of aquatic management, which is geared towards retaining and restoring balance within the waterbody’s ecosystem. Maintaining an equilibrium of native vegetation enhances the potential for increased species richness and ecosystem resilience – the ability to maintain balance despite challenges posed by nutrient loading, water stratification and other factors that can affect water quality. In addition to proactively managing vegetation, hydro-raking can help reduce or prolong the need for dredging, which is often the costliest project a homeowners association will ever face. While the hydro-rake is not a suitable management strategy in every situation, it can be extremely effective when used to control several types of vegetation often found in waterbodies used for recreation, community fishing, the collection of stormwater runoff, or simply the enjoyment of their aesthetic beauty.

EMERGENT SPECIES The hydro-rake has the ability to target certain areas of nuisance 6

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Emergent vegetation such as cattails, common reed and


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aquatic management cont. water chestnut, and water lotus are additional candidates for hydro-raking service

SUBMERSED SPECIES Submersed species such as curly-leaf pondweed, big leaf pondweed and tape grass can be effectively managed through hydro-raking. These prescribed programs can provide sufficient plant reduction, especially when combined with herbicide management options. As with any management strategy, it’s important to always consider the biology of the targeted plant before beginning a hydro-raking project. Some submersed plants, such as such as milfoil and fanwort spread heavily through fragmentation and may require alternate management strategies to ensure fragmentation and repopulation do not occur.

Pictured above (courtesy of SOLitude) Emergent vegetation that thrive in shallow lakes and stormwater ponds, like water lily and water willow species, are suitable candidates for removal by hydro-rake.

maidencane are common plants that can plague waterbodies; however, removal can be achieved by utilizing the hydro-rake as a stand-alone management option or as a complement to other management approaches. Emergent plants are fantastic candidates for the hydro-rake because they are usually found along the edge of the waterbody, where they can be easily accessed by the rake attachment. During the removal process, the hydrorake will extract the plant in its entirety, as well as its attached rhizome (root) structure lain beneath the water’s surface. Because the hydro-rake works from the water rather than land, desirable ornamental and buffer plant species along the shoreline are not impacted.

Hydro-raking is a management tool used in a wide array of aquatic restoration projects ranging from inlets, outlets, littoral zones, coves, private shorelines, and more. Aquatic vegetation removal projects can be performed any time of year, but the best time is when the nutrients are in the vegetative structure; this is relative to the associated region, weather conditions, and plant biology. When considering this service, the first step is to contact your local lake and pond management professional to conduct a site visit. During this time, they will identify nuisance plant species and management areas, and consider a strategy that aligns with your association’s long-term waterbody goals. As with any form of proactive management, hydro-raking can help improve the health, longevity and beauty of your community’s lake or stormwater pond for years to come, but is most effective when used in conjunction with other preventative management methods, including aeration, buffer management, nutrient remediation and other strategies that prevent the premature aging, or filling in with sediment, of the waterbody.

FLOATING LEAF SPECIES The hydro-rake is effective when removing common floating leaf vegetation such as water lily and watershield. These plant species are ideal for hydro-rake management, due to their leaf structure and attached root systems underneath. As with common reed and cattail removal, the hydro-rake can remove the plants, as well as the root structures. Open water is then restored, thus enhancing the ability of native aquatic flora and fauna to repopulate the area. Other common floating-leaf species, such as water hyacinth, 8

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Emily Walsh is an experienced Environmental Scientist with SOLitude Lake Management, an environmental firm providing sustainable lake, pond, wetland and fisheries management solutions. Learn more about this topic at www. solitudelakemanagement.com/knowledge.


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cai national news

Advocating with Impact Learn how you can make an impact by working with your legislators to advocate for your community on February 8, 2019 in Orlando. This event is hosted by CAI’s eight Florida Chapters. COMING SOON ... WATCH FOR EARLY REGISTRATION & SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES! Florida community managers, homeowners and association board members, and business partners join together for an event that focuses on engaging in advocacy efforts with the state Legislative Action Committee, and discussing legislative trends and hot topics that affect all aspects of community association living.

ATTEND THE FLORIDA LEADERSHIP FORUM TO EXPERIENCE: • • • • •

Expert advice on how to lobby for your community, how to get your legislators’ Attention, and what it takes to submit a bill they’ll support Networking with fellow Florida advocates Town Hall panel with local legislators Florida legislative updates and Q&A discussion

If you live in, work for, or provide services to a Florida community association, you’ll leave the Forum more informed, more engaged, and better able to advocate for a successful community.

Recruiter Club Contest CAI is continuously reaching new heights in our growing membership, thanks to your help—proving there truly is strength in numbers. Help us aim even higher, together, by recruiting your friends and colleagues to join CAI, the #1 resource for those who live, work, and provide services in community associations worldwide. The Recruiter Club Contest will run from September 6th through November 30th. All first-time recruiters will receive a $5 gift card. Those who recruit the most new members will be eligible to win two grand prizes: B ​ ose Headphones and an iPad. And, the chapter with the most recruits will win a Canon Wireless All-in-One printer! Help us reach 40,000 members! For more information and complete contest rules, visit www.caionline.org/RecruitAndWin. 10

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bank loans BY HEATHER J. KARAMITSOS, SENIOR VP/DIRECTOR OF ASSOCIATION BANKING, AMERICAN MOMENTUM BANK

How to Put Your Best Foot Forward When Pursuing a Bank Loan

I

magine a world where associations could budget for and have the funds available to always cover all expenses. Capital improvement projects like installing new roofs and replacing windows never go over budget. Natural disasters never cause damage that exceeds the cost of what’s available in reserves. Pool pumps and fire sprinkler systems never need to be replaced earlier than planned. Unfortunately, a perfect world like this does not exist. In the real world, associations face situations where, for various reasons, they don’t have or can’t access operating or reserve funds to cover over-budget or surprise projects. That’s when borrowing money may be a good option. If your association has decided to pursue a bank loan, the following insights and tips can help you put your best foot forward.

who may be working on your behalf through your property management company, will collect financial information on the association. This may include the past three years’ tax returns, audited financial statements, current debt schedule if applicable, year-to-date budget, proposed budget reflecting increase for loan repayment and current delinquency report. After this information is collected, your banker will construct a credit memo detailing the loan requirements and recommendation for the underwriting department. The bank’s credit officer then has all the information needed to review your loan application.

WHAT BANKS LIKE TO SEE A bank will review and assess several aspects of your association when considering your loan application. The following factors can play in your favor – or against it:

• Fully Completed Paperwork – This may seem like a silly

UNDERWRITING BASICS If a bank loan makes sense for your community, your banker, 12

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suggestion, but we often see applications with missing information. Fill out all paperwork completely before


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bank loans cont. owners. Even if the budget increase passes a board vote, the bank could decline the loan application if it thinks the assessment increase is too high to realistically collect on or may cause a spike in delinquencies. Also, banks may be less willing to approve a loan following natural disasters, depending on the circumstances. For example, a community with units valued at $125,000 per unit seeking a $25 million loan to repair roofs following a hurricane may have a hard time securing a loan. A bank could anticipate that unit owners may walk away from their damaged units, therefore decreasing the amount of assessments collected and needed to repay the loan.

FINAL THOUGHTS If you’ve made the decision to borrow, it’s important to find the right bank. Some banks, such as American Momentum Bank, specialize in Association Banking. Because these banks better understand an association’s budgeting process, financial position and other variables specific to associations, they tend to be less conservative than other banks.

submitting it to the bank; otherwise, your application will get delayed until all details are provided.

• Adequate Reserves – Banks will want to know whether your reserves are healthy. Has your association recently borrowed from reserves and, if so, have those funds been replaced or budgeted to be replaced? And are there adequate reserves for future projects?

• Consistent Assessment Payment History – Banks like to see that your owners are consistent with assessment payments and that delinquencies are ideally under 5%.

• Low Percentage of Investor-Owned Units – Communities

Banks that specialize in Association Banking can be particularly helpful for associations that may not be able to check off all the items listed above. For example, even though banks typically like to see a low percentage of investor-owned units, institutions with Association Banking experts may be willing to take a closer look at the details during underwriting, such as how many investors are involved. The bank may look more favorably on a community that has 40 units owned by 35 different investors than 40 units owned by one investor. These banks may also be more willing to work with communities with delinquency rates over 5% if the other numbers look good. When the real world presents financial challenges that your association didn’t plan for, the above insights should help prepare you for pursuing a loan.

with a high percentage of investor-owned units may have difficulties securing a loan. This is an issue because, for example, if your community has 100 units and 40 are owned by one investor and that investor goes under, that investor could take the property down with it.

• Favorable Repayment Capacity – Banks will take a close look at the likelihood that your association will be able to repay the loan. One area that will be reviewed is whether or not it’s feasible for your association to increase the budget and special assessments to cover loan payments. For example, an association with no reserves seeking a $1 million bank loan would need to substantially increase assessments to 14

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Heather J. Karamitsos is Senior VP/ Director of Association Banking at American Momentum Bank and is a statecertified continuing education provider for community association managers. She can be reached at hkaramitsos@ americanmomentum.bank and 239-653-7389.


With community association lending expertise like ours, you’ll get the job done right.

take that to the bank. Mark Evans Regional Account Executive 321-745-8444 Toll Free 866-800-4656, ext. 7488 mark.evans@mutualofomahabank.com

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chapter disaster relief ideas COURTESY OF COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION INSTITUTE

Many of the listed ideas are attributed to the Greater Houston Chapter and Stephanie Ferrante, CED, Greater Houston Chapter after Texas and Louisiana were affected by Hurricane Harvey. 1. Determine the needs of people in your area. Identify ways to build community in the membership. Do they have basic needs of food and shelter? Do they need goods, such as clothing and essentials? Do they need assistance in cleaning up their homes/ yards? Do they need a hub of resources and information? 2. Take photos and log stories. It’s important to get visual and verbal stories from those affected to document the disaster. This provides information for recovery efforts, advocacy, progress and volunteer recognition. • Look for members helping members. If you see a member business partner helping in a community, take a photo. • If there is a clean-up event or fundraiser, document it. • Share your stories with CAI’s chapter and marketing staff. We can get the stories and photos in the hands of legislators, volunteers and members. • Work with CAI headquarters staff on professionals to assist in this area. 3. Use CAI Resources – Headquarters and Local Chapters. We can make your message statewide and national. Tell us what you and your members need! We can have a broad reach and people

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want to help! • Disaster Preparedness/Relief Webpages. CAI has built a comprehensive page with preparedness and relief information here: www.caionline.org/HomeownerLeaders/ DisasterResources/Pages/PreparingforEmergencies.aspx. Work with CAI membership, chapter or marketing staff to share information specific to your chapter to post (see chapter initiative ideas on next page). Example here: www. caionline.org/HomeownerLeaders/DisasterResources/ Pages/CAISupportsTexas.aspx • Advocacy Efforts. CAI is working with federal agencies to provide relief in emergency situations. Please share this link and refer to it for information. »» www.caionline.org/Advocacy/FederalAdvocacy/ PriorityIssues/Pages/Disaster-Relief-Fairness.aspx »» Have members reach to local legislators to visit communities affected. (Take photos!) 4. Share information. Be a clearing house of information for your communities. They know you and trust you! • Sign up for city/county updates via websites, blogs, Facebook, Twitter, etc. Monitor city, county and state


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chapter disaster relief ideas cont. sites for information about recovery efforts you can share and post. Your local communities are the best source of information on waste removal, status of utilities, office and school closings, etc. • Share/post what you find valuable via social media, your website and/or email, based on member needs. Social media will likely have the broadest reach. • Some examples of sites to monitor include: »» Monitor www.FEMA.gov or www.fema.gov/ hurricane-irma and share information. »» www.transportation.gov/2017-hurricanes »» www.nvoad.org/ - National Volunteer Organizations Active in Disaster. This is a hub for organized volunteering. »» Emergency management offices. »» Monitor insurance sites to share information. Be cautious of fraud. »» School information. »» Follow and share information from local housing

organizations, i.e. Neighborhood Coalition, City Council, Apartment Association. 5. Chapter Initiatives. Provide a way for your members to help. And promote through the national network of chapters and headquarters. • Form an Outreach Committee to coordinate volunteer efforts for members including supplies, volunteer resources and funds. • Conduct a drive for donations – food, clothing, gift cards, etc. Direct to reputable charitable organizations. • Encourage members to be reasonable. • Provide members with a prominent link to your Service Directory or CAI’s service directory. »» For community managers and homeowner leaders looking to find CAI member business partners, please use our service directory at directory. caionline.org.

got credentials? If you have credentials, you have credibility. More than just letters after your name, CAI credentials identify you as the right professional for the job. They give employers confidence that you have the knowledge, experience and integrity to provide the best possible service to their associations. CAI provides opportunities for industry professionals to fast-track their companies and careers and stand out from the competition. If you hold a CAI credential, you are automatically listed in CAI’s online Directory of Credentialed Professionals, where potential employers and clients can find you—and see that you stand above the rest.

Learn how to earn CAI credentials today . . . visit www.caionline.org/credentials or call (888) 224-4321 (M-F, 9–6:30 ET) for more information.

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»

CrEdEnTIALs For ProFEssIonALs: z association management specialist (ams®) z Professional Community association manager (PCam®) z large-scale manager (lsm®)

»

z reserve specialist (rs™) z Community insurance and risk management specialist (Cirms®) CrEdEnTIALs For MAnAGEMEnT CoMPAnIEs: z accredited association management Company (aamC®)


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ATTORNEYS AT LAW

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Branch Banking and Trust Company is a Member FDIC and an Equal Housing Lender. Loans are subject to credit approval. Only deposit products are FDIC insured. Š 2016, Branch Banking and Trust Company. All rights reserved.

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GOLD SPONSOR: $4000 (SOLD)

SOLD

Two Foursomes included plus 8 commemorative golf polo shirts with company logo and tournament logo. Company logo on all materials, plus time to address the attendees at the awards luncheon.

SILVER LUNCH SPONSOR: $2800 (1 of 1 Available)

Foursome included. Company logo on all materials and time to address attendees at the awards luncheon.

HOLE IN ONE: $1200 (SOLD)

SOLD

Contest for free car! Company name on sign at hole during play. Acknowledgement at luncheon.

PUTTING CONTEST SPONSOR: $1000 (SOLD)

SOLD

Contest for $5000 cash! Company name on sign at hole during play.

LONGEST DRIVE SPONSORS: $400 (1 of 4 Available) Company name on sign at hole during play.

BREAKFAST BAG SPONSOR: $1500 (1 of 1 Available)

Company logo on all materials plus swag in golfer's bags.

CLOSEST TO PIN SPONSOR: $400 (SOLD) SOLD Company name on sign at hole during play.

TEE SPONSORS: $350 (SOLD OUT)

UT O D L O S

ALL SPONSORS WILL RECEIVE: • • •

Acknowledgement on Sponsors signage at event. Opportunity to raffle off prizes. Opportunity to supply promotional materials for goodie bags.

*Course does not permit outside food or beverage. If you would like to contact the course (407-299-1099), they will allow their team to serve alcohol at your tee for a small corkage fee. If you need a tent, table or chairs, please contact the course directly.

Name: _________________________ Company: _______________________ Address: ________________________ City, State, Zip: ____________________ Phone: __________________________ Email: __________________________ □ Check Enclosed □ Charge to Credit Card Below: □ Visa □ Master Card □ American Express Name on Card: _______________________ Account #: __________________________ Exp Date: ____/____ CVV #: __________ Signature: __________________________

Company name on sign at hole during play. 2 reps per hole sponsor. Bring a raffle item. (Additional reps are $30 per person.)

RANGE SPONSOR: D $300 (SOLD)

SOL

Company name on sign at the range.

BEVERAGE CART SPONSORS: $225 (SOLDLOUT) D OUT

SO

Company name on cart.

PARTICIPANTS: $125 (Individual Player) $450 (Foursome)

OTS P S R E Y Team Name: PLA_______________________ Player #1: _________________________ UT O D L Player #2: _________________________ O S Player #3: _________________________

Player #4: _________________________ Total Enclosed: $ ___________________ Note: Please contact us to verify availability of sponsorships. Sponsorship is not guaranteed until form and payment are received. Make checks payable to CAI Central Florida Chapter, P.O. Box 941125, Maitland, FL 32794

LEVEL OF SPONSORSHIPS: □ $4000 (Gold) SOLD □ $2800 (Silver) □ $1500 (Breakfast Bag) □ $1200 (Hole in One) SOLD □ $1000 (Putting Contest) SOLD □ $400 (Longest Drive) □ $400 (Closest to Pin) SOLD □ $350 (Tee) SOLD □ $300 (Range) SOLD □ $225 (Beverage Cart) SOLD

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welcome new members! BUSINESS PARTNERS

MANAGER MEMBERS

BC Restoration Services Ms. Jamie Terrell

Ms. Lisa Di Turi-dini

DMKoehn Landscaping Mr. David Rogers Lanstar, LLC Mr. Wendell Taylors PCDG Construction Mr. Pedro Rodriguez SERVPRO of SW Orlando Mrs. Lynne Sadowski Specialized Pipe Technologies Mr. Jeff Graff

NATIONAL BUSINESS PARTNER TOPS Software, LLC Ms. Stefanie Ford

MANAGEMENT COMPANY Castle Group Mrs. Gianna M. Rahmani, CMCA, AMS, PCAM

Mr. Chris Browne Towers Property Management, Inc.

Mr. Derek Lovett

VOLUNTEER LEADERS

Ms. Suzanna McLeod, CMCA CCMC

Dr. Betty Jo Miller Fountains at Crystal Creek

Mr. Jesse Uribe Community Management Professionals-Orlando

Ms. Jennifer Oberosler Live Oak Reserve Homeowners Association, Inc.

Mr. Michael Gallagher Elliott Merrill Community Management

Mr. Richard Campagna Outdoor Resorts at Orlando, Inc

Mr. Christopher Madsen Elliott Merrill Community Management

Mr. Larry Doel Outdoor Resorts at Orlando, Inc

Ms. Karen B. Marich, CMCA, AMS IPM Corporation

Mr. Paul Meikel Outdoor Resorts at Orlando, Inc

Ms. Michelle Arditi Leland Management, Inc.

Mr. George Bernard Tuttle Outdoor Resorts at Orlando, Inc

Mrs. Yulissa K Cruz Leland Management, Inc.

Mr. Barry Wood Outdoor Resorts at Orlando, Inc

Ms. Sandra K. Lowery, CMCA Leland Management, Inc.

Mr. George Wood Outdoor Resorts at Orlando, Inc

do you want to become

a better board member? We’ve got you covered! robert riddick, the Foundation’s PresidentElect, is a volunteer board member in his community and has relied on Foundation Best Practice reports to navigate the good, bad, and ugly situations that have developed over the years in his own association, all while improving the quality of his neighborhood.

or earn your PCAM? Former Educator of the Year Paul Grucza, also a Foundation board member, shares that Best Practice reports are an important component of Cai’s education curriculum.

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hoa board meeting BY KRYSTYNA JUTSON, SPERLONGA DATA & ANALYTICS

How to Maintain an Orderly HOA Board Meeting

H

OA members, regardless of the size of the association, are busy juggling many responsibilities. Work, family and home improvement take up most of the time that is not devoted to sleep. With that in mind, directors should remember that while they are the decision makers, they and all their fellow members are human and occasionally display their shortcomings at board meetings - even when meeting rules are in force. Whether your association has 20 homes or 2,000, respectful conduct and order should be maintained at board meetings. But we are human, and there are times when frustration and impatience take over that meetings can become sources of contention, especially when a member is dismissed out of hand, or feels his or her concerns have been ignored over a period of time.

CHALLENGES FACING SMALLER HOAS Smaller associations without rec rooms or meeting centers generally are more informal, with meetings held usually at one of the director’s homes. Decorum is generally looser since the association members are tighter knit and members are almost always on the same page when it comes to knowing issues that should be addressed in the short term as well as long term. With intimacy, however, comes occasional controversy and contention that can arise during the 24

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course of a board meeting (or in the common area before a meeting). Because smaller sized HOAs have a comparatively limited number of directors, the effect of a disruptive member is more immediate and should be addressed without delay. As an example, one such smaller association (14 units) had a persistent problem with residents placing belongings in front of their parking places in the property’s underground parking lot. This behavior is against CC&Rs and monthly penalties are assessed for the repeat, persistent violators. One homeowner was warned on several occasions that his renter needed to stash his belongings elsewhere, as not only was this against rules, but it was also a fire department violation that could incur fines against the HOA upon inspection. The behavior continued, penalties continued to pile up, and the homeowner, who never attended board meetings, decided to finally attend, and during the open forum portion of the meeting, launched a 15 minute invective on the unfairness and excessiveness of the penalties assessed against him (approximately $2,000 over the course of 18 months). Despite attempts to forestall him, he continued virtually unabated, in an effort to have the entire debt scrubbed from his account. Having done little to further his cause, the board later met in executive session to reduce it somewhat, with the stipulation that, if the debt was not resolved by the homeowner in a timely


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hoa board meeting cont. manner, it would be resolved once his home was sold. During that executive session, the directors also decided upon future rules of conduct, limiting individual open forum time and that any lengthy issues be addressed in writing to both the management company and to the board.

AVERTING DISRUPTION AT LARGER ASSOCIATION BOARD MEETINGS Larger HOAs face a different set of challenges altogether. These communities have a board with several more members than a smaller HOA, and with the more expansive board come more potential disruption problems during meetings. In order to encourage attendance and to keep a healthy turnaround of directors from year to year, it’s important to nip these issues in the bud as soon as they begin. Instead of the collegiality of a smaller HOA, where members, while adhering to rules of order, meet more casually, larger association meetings are more formal, employing stricter time schedules to keep meetings from becoming marathon complaint sessions. It’s also important to encourage deliberation amongst the directors, should an agenda item come to a vote. Members feel confident with this level of transparency, however, if the agenda item is particularly contentious and requires a great deal of discussion time, directors may experience difficulty maintaining control. While keeping the meeting on a schedule is important, it’s critical that members’ issues are reasonably vented for further consideration, which may mean a longer time block allocated to a specific agenda item, or to the open forum. Directors should remain mindful regarding open forum time

to make sure that homeowners are able to air their comments and that their comments are committed to meetings notes recorded by the board secretary.

REMAIN FOCUSED AND TIMELY Directors should always make the assumption that their fellow members have a family and work life and do not wish to spend 4 hours at an HOA board meeting - no matter how important the issues may be. While discussing important agenda items is vital, keeping a debate moving on to the next agenda item and keeping a discussion on the topic is crucial. At this time directors should exercise diplomacy and keep members aware that agenda items should be discussed in an orderly manner, one at a time, on topic. Should any member become disruptive, use your better judgment to diffuse the member, from initiating a vote on an agenda item to asking the person to leave. If any items remain unresolved, they can be tabled to the next board meeting or, if urgent, handled via committee through email or a subsequent committee meeting that reports its findings to the board at large at a subsequent meeting. Long meetings may appear productive because of the length of discussion, but they also can lead to imprudent decision making by fatigued directors, and an equally tired membership that veers off the agenda to points unknown. To avoid these problems, keep your agenda simple and make sure directors read associated agenda materials ahead of time (whether via hard copy or email). HOA members in attendance do not want to wait for directors to read through a 10-page construction bid during the meeting and then vote on it. Ultimately the board must build a trust between itself and the membership to help ensure that, while bad behavior is discouraged, disagreement is not. With constructive disagreement comes learning, and the realization that when the decision making process involves the general membership, a better result can be achieved. The outcome: a more harmonious community.

Disclaimer: This article is intended for general information purposes only and does not necessarily represent the thoughts, views or opinions of Sperlonga Data & Analytics and should not be construed as legal advice. For more articles like this one, please visit www.sperlongadata.com/blog.

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beware of foreclosure scams COURTESY OF COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION INSTITUTE

R

ising foreclosure rates have led to an increase in scam artists offering to aid homeowners in financial straits. They typically promise to help save the homes of people facing foreclosure, but will strip away the value of the home with no benefit for the homeowner. For more information, visit www. HousingHelpNow.org.

HOMEOWNERS SHOULD PROCEED WITH CAUTION IF AN INDIVIDUAL OR COMPANY:

any other reason.

• Offers to buy your house for cash at a fixed price that is not set by the housing market at the time of sale.

WHAT SHOULD A HOMEOWNER NEVER DO? • Don’t be pressured to sign a contract. Take your time to

• Calls itself a “mortgage consultant” or “foreclosure service.” • Contacts people whose homes are listed for foreclosure,

• • • • • • •

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including anyone who uses flyers or solicits for business door-to-door, by phone or email. Encourages you to lease your home so you can buy it back over time. Collects a fee before providing any services to you. Instructs you to cease all contact with your lender, credit or housing counselors, lawyer or other legitimate experts. Tells you to make your mortgage payments directly to him or his company (not the lender). Requires that you transfer your property deed or title to him or his company. Makes a promise that seems too good to be true, for example, instant cash with “no strings attached.” Tells you that as part of the deal you will need to move out of your house for some period of time for remodeling or for

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• •

• •

review all documents thoroughly, preferably with a lawyer who is representing your interests only. Don’t send or give your mortgage payments to someone other than your lender, even if he promises to make the payments for you. Don’t sign away ownership of your house to anyone without advice from a credit or housing counselor or lawyer. Don’t rely on verbal agreements. They mean nothing. Get all promises in writing and keep copies of all documents, especially those you sign. Don’t sign anything containing blank lines or spaces. Scammers can add information later without your knowledge or approval. If you do not speak English, use your own translator. Don’t depend on someone who is provided by the “rescuer.” Don’t fall for promises often used to lure homeowners such as claims to save your credit rating, promises of instant cash, guarantees that a buyer will be found within a certain number of days, help in filing for bankruptcy to “stop the foreclosure” and offers of free rent or gifts.


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community spirit BY SUSETTE UNDERWOOD, RESIDENT OF GARDEN LAKE ESTATES & REGIONAL OFFICE MANAGER FOR BECKER

LOVE THY NEIGHBOR

L

ast year Central Florida suffered a nasty blow from Hurricane Irma. Situations like this can sometimes bring out the bad in people, but can also bring out the good as well. My heart was warmed by the outpouring of neighborly love I witnessed in my community. In preparation of the storm I visited some of my neighbors, some of them elderly and some younger couples to see if they needed help to prepare. While doing so, I saw many others doing the same thing. It was nice to see people exchanging cell phone numbers and offering food and water to those in need. One of my neighbors offered a room in her home to an elderly woman, her cat and dog so she wouldn’t have to go through the storm alone. She declined the offer, but the fact that the offer was made clearly meant a lot to this women. After the storm, we all emerged to access the damage. An elderly gentleman down the street that lives alone had a very large tree that had fallen on his home. He doesn’t have family nearby and not knowing if he was home alone, his neighbor and my friend went to check on him and his granddaughter happened to be there with him. The granddaughter was overcome with emotion at the fact that while my friend didn’t really know her grandfather very well, she cared enough to come check on him. The two of them exchanged telephone numbers and my friend will now continue to check in on him knowing that his family all lives quite a distance away. 30

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Our neighborhood lost its power during the storm that Sunday night. I didn’t realize but our neighborhood is on at least two or more power grids. My portion of the neighborhood was very fortunate to have had our power returned to us on Tuesday morning. The other half of our neighborhood was not so lucky. Their power was restored much later in the week. I was once again touched by the sight of several heavy duty orange extension cords extending from houses that had power to houses across the street that were still without power. This was a wonderful vision of neighbors caring for their fellow neighbors. Prior to the storm I considered moving from this neighborhood to downsize to a smaller home since all my children are grown and on their own. I have since changed my mind; I am blessed to be surrounded by neighbors that truly care about one another and I feel that is hard to find these days. I am staying right where I am and I am going to continue to Love Thy Neighbor!

Susette Underwood is a resident of Garden Lake Estates in Seminole County, FL as well as the Regional Office Manager and Client Account Supervisor for Becker, a multi-practice commercial law firm with attorneys, lobbyists and other professionals at offices across the United States. Visit beckerlawyers.com for more information.


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CAI CENTRAL FLORIDA CHAPTER MEMBERSHIP BENEFITS In addition to the many perks associated with a National CAI Membership, your local Central Florida Chapter offers even more value and engagement to its members:

HOMEOWNER VOLUNTEERS

COMMUNITY MANAGERS

If three members from the same board join the chapter, your first year of membership dues are FREE

CAICF will pay for HALF of your manager tuition fees for required education credits

MANAGEMENT COMPANIES

BUSINESS PARTNERS

Company recognition & networking Maximize business brand opportunities with current & recognition & enjoy exclusive potential clients, as well as face-to-face networking industry-specific business partners opportunities with potential clients

LOCAL CHAPTER EDUCATION AND NETWORKING EVENTS Quarterly Board Certification classes CEU credit hours at specified luncheon events Participation opportunity at the Annual Golf Outing Invitation to the Summer Social & Annual Gala Admission and exclusive perks at one of the best community association tradeshows in Central Florida

Opportunity to attend and speak at panels, Q&A sessions, education classes, and Business Roundtable events Participation & sponsorship opportunities at the Annual Golf Outing Invitation to the Summer Social & Annual Gala Admission, exclusive booth vendor pricing, and sponsorship opportunities at one of the best community association tradeshows in Central Florida

Professional Designations & Certifications Local Professional Management Development Program Classes Quarterly Board Certification classes CEU credit hours at specified luncheon events

ACCESS TO SPECIALIZED COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION SERVICE PROVIDERS Online service directory Personal interaction at monthly events Panels and Q&A sessions

SPONSORSHIP & MARKETING OPPORTUNITIES In addition to brand recognition, sponsors enjoy benefits like a free booth at the trade show, advertising opportunities, first consideration at speaking events, discounted pricing for future sponsorships and events & advertising on the chapter website Inclusion in the Service Directory

INCLUSION IN ONE OF THE LARGEST CHAPTERS IN THE US ENCOMPASSING OVER 7,500 HOA & CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATIONS IN MARION, VOLUSIA, SEMINOLE, ORANGE, BREVARD, OSCEOLA, POLK, LAKE & SUMTER COUNTIES!

Interested in joining the CAI Central Florida Chapter? For assistance or more information, reach out to the Executive Director by calling 407-850-0106 or e-mailing at exdir@caicf.org. To join now, visit www.caionline.org for membership categories and dues. Prior to joining online you will be prompted to log in or create an account. Membership dues are non-refundable. 32

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Profile for Overflow

CAICF | 3rd Quarter 2018 Newsletter  

CAICF | 3rd Quarter 2018 Newsletter