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LEGAL NEWS - FEBRUARY 2007


LAST CHANCE FOR LEGISLATIVE DAYS!!

This is it! If you are serious about your profession, you will sign up NOW for Legislative Days in Tallahassee. These 2 days can make a huge difference in how you operate your business or carry on your profession. We have extremely important bills this year, and your support is crucial. The Florida Apartment Association (FAA) Legislative Days are March 27 and 28, and the Florida Association of Residential Properties Managers (FARPM) are March 28 and 29. Click Here to reserve your spot for FAA, or click here for FARPM.

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RETAINING INTEREST ON SECURITY DEPOSITS        

If your security deposit and or last month’s rent are being held in your company’s interest bearing escrow account, can you retain the interest, or must part or all be disbursed to the tenant? Cannot the parties simply agree on who retains the interest? It would seem logical and fair, but is not legal.

Click here  to examine interest bearing Security Deposit Accounts.

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THE LEASE GREATER THAN ONE YEAR         

A common misconception has to do with the duration of the residential lease. We all know that commercial leases can be for periods longer than one year, but how about residential? It is absolutely allowed. You simply need 2 witnesses per signature.  If a lease is one day or more over a year, as is often seen with prorated rent plus 12 months, remember to have all parties sign in the presence of 2 witnesses. Notarization is not required!

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FORECLOSURES AND THE TENANT          

An unfortunate reality of our times is a startling increase in the number of residential home foreclosures.  Given that increase, it becomes much more likely that a property manager will have to field a distress call from a tenant who just received a foreclosure complaint. What is the residential property manager to do in the event of a foreclosure?

Click here  to see how an owner’s foreclosure can affect you. 

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NEED A LEASE OPTION?            

Many of our residential property managers request that we prepare Lease Options. Offering a Lease Option could mean renting out that hard to rent home. Since our primary practice is Landlord/Tenant law, not real estate law, our firm will not get involved in all the laws and nuances of the Lease Option process. We do work with an attorney, Charles R. Meador Jr., with over 25 years real estate law experience, in providing Lease Options to our clients at a cost of $250.00 in addition to our usual lease charge. The next time this comes up, simply request the Lease Option Input Form. Call 1 800 253 8428 or email us at info@evict.com


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THE RESIDENTIAL TENANT EVICTION PROCEDURE – BACK TO THE BASICS            

With the huge numbers of sales agents activity diving into property management due to the sales slump, many do not understand the process. Even experienced property managers who have been fortunate enough to avoid evictions for years do not understand or remember the process. Can you explain to your owners how it works and what they may be facing in the event of an eviction?
 
Click here  to get Back to Basics on the “uncontested” eviction procedure timeline. 

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SELFSTORAGELEGAL.COM- Contents Insurance            

Did you know that the majority of tenants in self storage units fail to purchase insurance, even in light of the self storage agreement which specifically excludes liability on the part of the self storage facility for any loss of or damage to the stored property? Does the tenant understand the dangers here? Are you encouraging the purchase of the insurance? What are the procedures?

 

Click here to read Self Storage Law expert attorney Jeffrey Greenberger’s article “Why Buy/Sell the Self Storage Insurance” .
 

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COMMERCIAL LAW AND YOU  - Florida’s Unfair and Deceptive Trade Practice Act        

Have you ever heard of Florida’s Unfair and Deceptive Trade Practice Act?  Most commercial landlords have not, and those who have do not realize that both the property owner and the property manager could be held liable under this act based upon a recent Supreme Court case decision. Property managers of commercial property MUST protect themselves from the actions and/or inactions of the owner. Are you protected?

Click here for an article by commercial law attorney Kevin Jursinski, and get protected.
 

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THE FAIR HOUSING CORNER - WHAT’S REASONABLE ABOUT AN ACCOMMODATION                                  By Cathy L. Lucrezi, Attorney at Law

You already know that fair housing laws require you to make a reasonable accommodation for a disabled tenant or applicant.  But, how do you know what is reasonable?  When is a request so unreasonable that you can refuse it?

Click here to better understand “Reasonable Accommodations”.
 

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INDUSTRY LEADER OF THE MONTH - MICHAEL SLATER

Michael Slater is President and Owner of TRIAD Research & Consulting, Inc. (“TRIAD”), a full service real estate market research and economic consulting firm based in Tampa , Florida . Michael has over 33 years of extensive background/experience in housing and real estate development and transactions. His company’s clients include institutional developers, asset and property management entities, appraisal/valuation professionals, property/mortgage brokerage firms, institutional lending/investment professionals, pension funds, realty advisors and REITS.

Michael has worked in the public and private sectors of the real estate industry since 1975, and in 1988 Michael joined the firm of Scott McWilliams Marketing Services (SMMS) as the Senior Vice President and head of their Real Estate and Finance Research Division. Michael served in this position until April of 1995, when he formed his own company, TRIAD Research & Consulting, Inc. Michael is one of the leading multifamily and residential development authorities in Florida , maintaining the most comprehensive database on multifamily inventory in the state. The firm’s general market knowledge, combined with vast quantitative and qualitative data, positions Michael as a qualified speaker concerning the issues of real estate market conditions throughout Florida .

Michael is a cancer survivor from bone cancer in 1983 and an amputee. Since then, he has remained active in the American Friends for Life and the American Cancer Society as a family and crisis counselor to persons and families affected by cancer, critical illness and/or limb loss, as well as being an active fund raiser and supporter of both Florida and National Special Olympics.

Michael thoroughly enjoys what he does and embraces the opportunity to participate with clientele from every facet of the industry. He has enjoyed involvement in over 1,000 developments and transactions in 20 years of consulting, seeing projects and ideas move from concepts to realities. He has earned the nickname “MR. INFO” in the real estate and financial industries in which we work, and proudly displays it as his email address as well as auto license tag! Michael can be reached at TRIAD Research & Consulting, Inc. via telephone (813) 908-8844 or at mrinfo@triadresearch.net or at their website at www.triadresearch.net.

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In this issue:

Legislative Days 2007

Interest on Sec. Deposits

Lease Greater than 1 Year

Foreclosures and the Tenant

Lease Option

Back to the Basics

Self-Storage Units

Commercial Law and You

Fair Housing Corner

Industry Leader of the Month

 
 
   

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Law Offices of Heist, Weisse & Lucrezi, P.A.

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Law Offices of Heist, Weisse & Lucrezi, P.A.
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