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Register Today! – CONDO & HOA EXPOS get information on booth availability, show sponsorship or speaking opportunities

Register Today! – CONDO & HOA EXPOS get information on booth availability, show sponsorship or speaking opportunities

  • Posted: Dec 04, 2017
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Register Today! – information on booth availability, show sponsorship or speaking opportunities

This coming spring, L&L Exhibition Management has four events that give you the opportunity to meet and have face time with Property Managers and Board Members in South Florida.

If you would like more information on booth availability, show sponsorship or speaking opportunities, please call me at (800)-374-6463 or reply to this email.
 
Sincerely,
Contact:
-Nick Vedder
Show Manager
(800) 374-6463
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ANNUAL MEETING TIPS FOR ASSOCIATIONS

ANNUAL MEETING TIPS FOR ASSOCIATIONS

  • Posted: Oct 02, 2017
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ANNUAL MEETING TIPS FOR ASSOCIATIONS

by Enrolled Agent Steven J. Weil, Ph.D., EA, LCAM, Royale Management Services, Inc.

 

As associations plan their annual meetings, these reminders and specific steps will be useful.

The annual meeting is a membership meeting in which every member can and should participate. Participation comes through properly-made motions, seconds, taking part in the discussion of motions and through voting.

The first order of business he is to appoint the chairperson to run the meeting.  The chairperson can be anyone who the members agree should chair the meeting.  In many associations the board president chairs the meeting; however, this requires approval of the members. Some associations ask their manager or attorney to chair the meeting.  This is acceptable as long as it is approved by the membership.  In large associations having a professional chair the meeting can help to keep it on track and see that the required business gets done properly.

A motion as to who shall chair the meeting can be made by any member of the association.  This motion must be seconded and then voted on by the members present. If the motion is approved by a majority of the member’s present, the chairperson is elected for the meeting.
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SFPMA MEMBER - Find us on the Members Directory
Royale Management Services, a registered and licensed community association management corporation in Florida, works with association Boards of Directors throughout South Florida to oversee the daily activities required for proper management, helping to educate them on their responsibilities, duties, and obligations. Royale’s team members are highly trained in all aspects of community association management and customer service to ensure that proper procedures are followed that keep the association in compliance with all of the rules governing elections, budgeting, accounting, operation, collection and assessment. The firm and its president are members of the Community Association Institute (CAI) and the Fort Lauderdale Chamber of Commerce.
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COPING WITH FL H.B. 1237 (2017)

COPING WITH FL H.B. 1237 (2017)

  • Posted: Aug 01, 2017
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COPING WITH FL H.B. 1237 (2017)

by Steven J. Weil, Ph.D., EA, LCAM, Royale Management Services, Inc.

Whenever the Legislature puts new laws on the books, in order to avoid becoming involved in expensive litigation, managers and board members are obliged to sort out what it all means along with what steps should be taken to address the real meaning, terms and conditions that the courts and judges conclude were the Legislature’s intent.

Florida’s Governor signed Florida House Bill 1237 (2017) into law on June 26, 2017.  The legislation went into effect on July 1, 2017 and added several requirements and prohibitions to the Florida Condominium Act (Chapter 718).

For example, HB 1237, now the law of the land in Florida, states, “Board members may serve 2-year terms if permitted by the bylaws or articles of incorporation. a board member may not serve more than four consecutive 2-year terms, unless approved by an affirmative vote of two-thirds of the total voting interests of the association.” The law also includes an exception if there are not enough eligible candidates to fill all board positions which allows current board members to continue beyond the otherwise prescribed period.

What is yet to be determined is whether this means a board member may serve no more than eight one-year terms, or, if association rules limit terms to one year, the four-term limitation still applies? Other questions still left unanswered include: When do these terms start? Is the law to be enforced retroactively, or are board members prior terms excluded from the new rule?

Another new rule states that a condo board member, despite good intentions, could be subject to penalties for violation of this caveat:  “An association may not employ or contract with any service provider that is owned or operated by a board member or any person who has a financial relationship with a board member.”  Under a strict interpretation of this update to the law, if a board member runs a pool service and is taking care of the association’s pool maintenance for only the cost of chemicals, that board member could end up facing criminal penalties for trying to help out.

Conflicts of interest (such as a board member providing a proposal from a company they are affiliated with) may have long existed, and while board members always should have abstained from any vote where it could be perceived that they had a financial conflict of interest, it could now be a criminal offense.

This is not the only place a condo officer, director or manager could find themselves facing the threat of criminal penalties.  While we all know, or at least should know, kickbacks of any kind are wrong, often accusations made by a unit owner are not grounded in reality and instead are based on little more than spite and mistrust.

However, The updated Florida Statute 718.111 now reads “[A]n officer, director, or manager may not solicit, offer to accept, or accept any thing or service of value or kickback for which consideration has not been provided for his or her own benefit or that of his or her immediate family, from any person providing or proposing to provide goods or services to the association. Any such officer, director, or manager who knowingly so solicits, offers to accept, or accepts any thing or service of value or kickback is subject to a civil penalty pursuant to s. 718.501(1)(d) and, if applicable, a criminal penalty.”

The updated statute goes on to require that an officer or director who is charged with certain crimes (primarily crimes of dishonest character) shall be removed from office and provides requirements for filling the vacancy left by any such removal. The silver lining here is that you have to be charged with a crime before you can be removed, a mere accusation is not enough.

Will these and other provisions that have been added to the law make it even more difficult to find volunteers who are willing to serve as board members? No one really knows yet. What we do know is, it will probably take years for the legislature and the courts to sort this new law out.  We also know that those who serve on our boards of directors are most often well-meaning volunteers who want to do the right thing and serve their fellow owners.  All we can do is hope that none of these changes make it harder to get these good people to serve, and the law works as intended keeping those with a self-serving agenda from throwing their hat in the ring.

We are not attorneys, and anything said here should not be construed as legal advice. This article is purely for educational purposes, with the goal of helping associations better understand current updates to the law. Royale Management Services team members are Licensed Community Association Managers (LCAM) who work with associations to manage, to navigate and to comply with the law.  As you can see, these changes raise several questions, and you can be sure that until these issues are addressed by a court, no one will really know the correct answers. Nevertheless, it is always advisable to seek legal counsel if an issue arises.

SFPMA MEMBER - Find us on the Members Directory
Royale Management Services, a registered and licensed community association management corporation in Florida, works with association Boards of Directors throughout South Florida to oversee the daily activities required for proper management, helping to educate them on their responsibilities, duties, and obligations. Royale’s team members are highly trained in all aspects of community association management and customer service to ensure that proper procedures are followed that keep the association in compliance with all of the rules governing elections, budgeting, accounting, operation, collection and assessment. The firm and its president are members of the Community Association Institute (CAI) and the Fort Lauderdale Chamber of Commerce.
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FREE Condominium   Board Member Certification Classes

FREE Condominium Board Member Certification Classes

  • Posted: Jul 12, 2017
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FREE Condominium 

Board Member Certification Classes by our Members> Royale Management Services

Board Certification

This course takes place the 2nd Monday of every month. The course is sponsored and held at the offices of Royale Management Services, Inc. located at 2319 N Andrews Avenue, Fort Lauderdale FL 33311. Refreshments and networking will begin at 5:30 PM and the presentation will begin promptly at 6:00 PM. Reservations are Required!

This is a hands on class that will help you understand: the basics of how to keep yourself and your association out of trouble, what’s legal and what’s not, what it means to be a fiduciary, how boards should function, what records must be kept, what kind of financial information you should get, how to use that information and much more.  We take a managers approach to getting things done, avoiding problems and protecting both the integrity of the association and that of the board. Best of all we will provide plenty of time for questions and examples.

For Reservations call 954-563-1269 between 9AM and 5PM Monday through Friday.  Seating is limited so make your reservations early.

This class meets the Florida state requirements for board certification and has been approved by The Division of Florida Condominiums, Timeshares, and Mobile Homes. It meets the requirements Florida 718.112 for Condominium Association Board Members.

 

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Over the past several years, all of Florida’s community association statutes have been amended to require that board members be “certified.”

Over the past several years, all of Florida’s community association statutes have been amended to require that board members be “certified.”

  • Posted: Jun 11, 2017
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Board Members Courses:

Newly elected or appointed board members must sign a form, that provides that the board member has read the association’s governing documents, and that such board member will work to uphold such documents to the best of his or her ability.

Further, the board member must agree that he or she will faithfully discharge his or her fiduciary duty to the association’s members.

In lieu of signing this written certification, a newly elected or appointed director may instead provide a certificate demonstrating that they have satisfactorily completed an approved educational course.    

 Find Upcoming Board Member Courses on our Calendar on SFPMA.COM

A prospective board member can attend and complete such an educational course up to one year in advance of taking a seat on the board.

In the event that a board member fails to either complete an educational course or sign the required form within ninety days of their election or appointment to the board, such board member is suspended from service on the board until they complete the requirement.

SFPMA.COM has a full list of Courses that are offered by our members. View our Calendar of Events and keep informed. Take advantage of these required courses.

Thank You SFPMA

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Making the most of any  community’s operating budget and improving the lifestyles of its residents.

Making the most of any community’s operating budget and improving the lifestyles of its residents.

  • Posted: May 31, 2017
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Working with vendors is a large part of serving on the board of a managed community.

Every community has outside partners for services like landscaping, sanitation, cable and Internet provision, pool maintenance, plumbing, blacktop, valet services and more. Finding and learning what they do and how they can help. Many people ask if its the Management company to find the best companies for the properties? Well we have found that Boards help in the selecting of the right companies. They give their suggestions to the Management companies. This way favoritism does not take place. Laws are being changed as we speak that will prevent this for Florida’s Property Management Industry.

Open and effective communication among the board, the management company and the vendors employed by the association is an important part of making the most of any community’s operating budget and improving the lifestyles of its residents. Focusing on great communication and why it matters.

Sherwin-Williams

What can happen if communication among those entities isn’t consistent, open and effective? “Ineffective communication with vendors can cost your community money, but more importantly, it can result in loss of trust,” according to Frank Mari, executive director of SFPMA.ORG  “That means trust that the residents have in both the management company and the board, and also the trust the board has in the management company to manage vendors and recommend the right vendors for the community. As they need qualified vendors they find many on SFPMA’s Members Directory to select from.”

Poor communication with vendors can cost your association money too. If you don’t understand the details in a contract and don’t keep an open line for questions and clarifications, you may not realize that your community isn’t getting the services you think you are signing up for…. and then you will need to pay for the missing elements separately, impacting your operating budget.

Mr.Mari says “Talk to your landscaper in the middle of winter, not just spring and summer,” he directed. “If you’re an auditor, check in with the board and management company a few times of year, not just when the audit needs to be done.” Call them ask them to do a walk through of your buildings and communities, Preventive Maintenance is Key.

If you aren’t sure whether or not your current property management maintains open communication with vendors, ask! It’s important to make sure that outside vendors operate in the best interests of your community. We are all well-versed in the importance of vendor relationships and effective communication,” Frank explained. “Boards appreciate that we bring that additional level of support. Because of the trust we create with our vendors, almost any situation between boards and vendors can be resolved fairly.”

Speaking the language A basic part of communication is simply understanding the language each party is speaking. Most board members are not going to be experts in all the areas of running a
managed community, but it’s important that you have a basic knowledge of the terminology being used. Board members are expected and required to execute contracts related to things like
landscaping and other topics they may not be previously familiar with,” Talk to your Property Manager and include your Law Firm with contracts. “That fiduciary responsibility means that they need to understand what they are signing, what the work entails. It’s not enough to just consider price. Board members need to know more about what vendors are doing in order to make sure it’s being done.”

All HOA and Condo boards should be involved early in vendor selection discussions and leave the details of execution to the management company. It is important the board communicate any critical elements of their vision for the community to the vendor and be clear about what they require from each potential vendor they meet with. Board members must know enough to
understand what they should expect, what level of service is being provided for their community and what reasonable expectations are for that vendor. A landscaping company
that cares for a dozen large properties isn’t going to hand-prune every shrub, but that may be what some board members expect because they don’t yet understand the basics of large-scale landscaping,” “Of course, a self-managed community is going require more knowledge from the board members as far as monitoring the work being done and knowing that contracts are being fulfilled properly. Having a professional management company involved takes that responsibility off board members, because we know best practices, thanks to our experience managing multiple communities.” If you are looking for a Management Company

Find Top Florida Companies on our Members Directory.

How can boards and management companies know they are up-to-date on the terminology and jargon being used by their vendors? Many management companies are SFPMA Members themselves, With this membership there are educational seminars or round tables that let board members hear directly from vendors. “In addition to our in-house educational opportunities, I suggest that board members go to home shows, garden shows and other trade events so they can interact directly with vendors and pick up literature on the latest techniques and products,”.

sfpma.com - network, educate with Florida's Property management industryI tell my members to spend time at meetings, seminars and expos at every one of them get to know the vendors, Collect brochures.  Build those relationships. Listen to the keynote speakers as well. Over the years, vendors have shared with me how they have been impacted by SFPMA and how it makes them want to be part of our success. Obviously, you learn a lot that you take back to their boards and educate them on new information.

All of our members, partners and board members are asked to focus on professional development and educational opportunities that are offered by our Association to our Industry. vendors in many different disciplines host events that allow property managers to earn continuing education credits, and that many welcome board member attendance as well.

When you get to know vendors, you’re ready to work with them as partners, to optimize your community association’s budget and improve the lifestyles of the residents in your community.

South Florida Property Management Association can help you work with vendors to make the most of your association’s budgets by learning about the Top Companies working in our Industry.

www.sfpma.org

Become a Member Today!

   

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FREE CONDO BOARD CERTIFICATION CLASSES AND PROPERTY MANAGEMENT SEMINARS

FREE CONDO BOARD CERTIFICATION CLASSES AND PROPERTY MANAGEMENT SEMINARS

  • Posted: May 30, 2017
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ROYALE MANAGEMENT SERVICES, FT. LAUDERDALE, HOLDS FREE CONDO BOARD CERTIFICATION CLASSES AND PROPERTY MANAGEMENT SEMINARS

Fort Lauderdale, May 30, 2017 — A series of free certification classes for condo Board members as well as educational seminars for Board members of condos, homeowners associations and co-ops take place on Monday evenings.  All sessions are held at the offices of Royale Management Services, 2319 North Andrews Avenue. 

Open to all who register, the Board certification classes and property management seminars are conducted by Steven J. Weil, Ph.D., EA, LCAM, president of the 31-year old Fort Lauderdale property management firm.  Refreshments and networking begin at 5:30 p.m. The seminars follow promptly at 6:00 p.m. and include a Q&A. Space is limited. Reservations may be made by calling 954-563-1269.

Condo Board Certification Classes are held on the second Monday of the month and cover topics such as condo law, fiduciary responsibility, governing documents, official records, financial reporting, budgeting, enforcement, elections, et al. Upcoming dates are:  6/12/2017, 9/11/2017, 10/9/2017, and 11/13/2017.

The Property Management Seminars listed below take place on the third Monday of the month: 

06/19/17       Conducting Meetings & Getting The Work Done

09/18/17       Reading & Using Association Financial Statements

10/16/17       Building a Budget That Works

11/20/17       Condo Elections – Getting It Right

Dr. Weil has appeared on Good Morning America and is frequently quoted by major media.  His bylined articles are regularly published on the South Florida Property Management Association website.  “The Condo Board Certification Classes are designed to help new board members meet the Florida 718.112 Statute requirements for Condo Association Board Members,” Dr. Weil said. “Our seminar goal is prevention — to help keep Board members of condos, HOAs and Co-ops from frequently having to call their attorney.”

ABOUT ROYALE MANAGEMENT SERVICES, INC.

Steven J. and Theresa Weil, each of whom has earned a Ph.D. in Business Administration, are the principals of Fort Lauderdale-based Royale Management Services, Inc. A licensed, full-service Community Association Management (CAM) firm, RMS provides professional residential property management services throughout Broward County, Florida, specializing in management, consulting and accounting for Condominium Associations, Home Owners Associations and Co-Ops.

RMS has a team of 16 full-time employees dedicated to working closely with association Boards to hold down costs while improving the quality of life for their residents. RMS strives to ensure that proper procedures are followed to keep the association in compliance with all of the rules governing elections, budgeting, accounting, operation, collection and assessment. The work includes educating board members on the responsibilities, duties, and obligations involved in governing the association.

Royale Management Services, Inc. has been serving South Florida since 1984. Originally founded to provide high-quality management and accounting services for business and individuals, the company expanded into the property management business in 2000. The firm and its president are members of the Community Association Institute (CAI) and the Fort Lauderdale Chamber of Commerce.

CONTACT:
Rose Sexton, Business Communications Services, Deerfield Beach, FL 

Phone: (954) 480-9906    Email: sextons.r@gmail.com

OR

Steven J. Weil, Ph.D., EA, LCAM

Royale Management Services, Inc., Fort Lauderdale, FL 33311

Phone: (800) 382-1040  Email:  steve@rmsaccounting.com

CHECK OUR MONTHLY CALENDAR OF UPCOMING EVENTS TO FIND THESE AND OTHER EVENTS FOR THE PROPERTY MANAGEMENT INDUSTRY.

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ARE WE TOO COMPLACENT ABOUT HURRICANE PREPARATION?

ARE WE TOO COMPLACENT ABOUT HURRICANE PREPARATION?

  • Posted: Apr 28, 2017
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ARE WE TOO COMPLACENT ABOUT HURRICANE PREPARATION?

Steven J. Weil, president, Royale Management Services

by Enrolled Agent Steven J. Weil, Ph.D., EA, LCAM, president, Royale Management Services, Inc.

It’s likely that we don’t have to react with any great urgency this summer to the long-term threat of sea level rising, but it’s probably a very good idea to think seriously about hurricane preparation right now.

Floridians may have become a bit complacent about hurricanes, knowing that South Florida has not been hit by a major hurricane since 2005.  However, hurricane researchers tell us that the current 11-year drought in the Sunshine State is almost twice as long as the previous one of six years’ duration (from 1979-1985).  They warn that it’s just a matter of time before storms start coming this way again.

Association residents have some options, depending upon the strength of a storm.

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SFPMA MEMBER - Find us on the Members Directory
Royale Management Services, a registered and licensed community association management corporation in Florida, works with association Boards of Directors throughout South Florida to oversee the daily activities required for proper management, helping to educate them on their responsibilities, duties, and obligations. Royale’s team members are highly trained in all aspects of community association management and customer service to ensure that proper procedures are followed that keep the association in compliance with all of the rules governing elections, budgeting, accounting, operation, collection and assessment.
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Entering the Gate at The Broward County Condo & HOA Expo, Ready to meet Leading Companies working in Florida’s Property Management Industry.

Entering the Gate at The Broward County Condo & HOA Expo, Ready to meet Leading Companies working in Florida’s Property Management Industry.

  • Posted: Apr 26, 2017
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The Broward County Condo & HOA Expo
Special thanks goes out to L&L Exhibition Management, Nick Vetter and his Team for putting on this event.

I stopped in to meet with many of our SFPMA (South Florida Property Management Association) Members. Starting with Multi-Housing Team Bob and Sergio with Aaxon Laundry Systems, Rodger Kopp III of Commercial Laundries, Rudy Silva and James Friedman with Sherwin-Williams, Introducing myself to Buster Cash with Coast to Coast General Contractors, Proper Introductions to Steven J Weil Owner of RMS Accounting and Royal Management Services, Getting to meet more team members Ana Echeverri and Pedro Diez with The Falcon Group and SFPMA Legal Experts for Community Associations Kaye,Bender,Rembaum Attorneys At Law where Michael Bender Pompano Beach Office was giving a “Seminar on Legal and Legislative Changes and how it affects your Communities”. Among other attorneys present was my pleasure to finally meet Lisa Magill Esq. who brings her Expertise in Community Association Laws to one of Florida’s Leading Law Firm.

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I made new sales by going to Condo & HOA Board meetings!

I made new sales by going to Condo & HOA Board meetings!

With the numbers of service companies that are competing for work in the Property Management Industry I get these questions asked almost every day. How can my company increase sales?  How can I get in front of the decision makers? 

Both are great questions, So you want to get in front of the decision makers letting them know what your company does and how your services can help them. We feel strongly about joining with others in an Industry Organization or Association, one that is committed to the industry you are trying to get work from.

First Look at how much they charge. There are so many that charge from 400 up to over 700 per year to be listed on their directory. We ask you to understand that many of these organizations and associations charge service companies more than other members, why would that be. Well they know that you want to join and get noticed they charge you more because there are more service companies looking to do this. We think this is unfair taking money out of the pockets of hard working companies. The property managers, property owners, landlords, should be the ones paying more to find the Top Professionals that are listed and ready to help save them on the services they provide.

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