When should condominium associations obtain competitive offers?

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The Snow Birds are returning to the North, so now begins the time, when fewer residents are around, for many condo and homeowner associations to make necessary repairs to the building and/or do the exciting lobby renovation, of the social room or the pavilion.

When hiring contractors to carry out repairs or renovations, we are often asked whether the Association should obtain competitive bids or not. With today’s supply chain issues and reinforcements from contractors, getting competitive bids is sometimes not as easy as it once was.

We should first look at cases where recruiting professionals “don’t demand” competitive bids. First, pursuant to Section 718.3026 of the Florida statutes, small condominium corporations of 10 units or less can elect not to have competitive bids if two-thirds of unit owners vote to do so. Second contracts with association employees and contracts for the following professionals: lawyers, accountants, architects, community association managers, timeshare management companies, engineers and landscape architect services, do not require tenders. Additionally, if products or services are needed due to an emergency, or if the business entity with which the Association wishes to engage is the sole source of supply within the Association’s county department , competitive bids are not necessary.

In a condominium, if a contract for the purchase, lease or rental of material or equipment, or for the provision of services, requires payment by the association on behalf of any condominium operated by the association in the package that exceeds 5% of the Association’s total annual budget, including reserves, the Association must obtain competitive bids for materials, equipment or services.

There is no obligation to accept the lowest bid and you only need to get at least two (2) bids; not three (3) as many believe.

In addition to bidding issues, it is also important to know that any contract that is not to be fully performed within one year for the purchase, lease or rental of equipment or equipment and all contracts for the provision of services must be “in writing”. Further, pursuant to Florida Statute Section 718.3025, an agreement for the provision of maintenance or management services shall not be valid unless it: “(a) specifies the contracted party’s services, obligations and responsibilities for provide maintenance or management services to the Owners Unit.(b) Specifies the costs incurred in the performance of such services, obligations or liabilities which are to be reimbursed by the association to the contracted party for providing maintenance services. maintenance or management. (c) Provides an indication of the frequency with which each service, obligation or responsibility is to be performed, whether listed for each service, obligation or responsibility or within categories thereof. (d) Specifies a minimum number of personnel to be employed by the contracting party to provide maintenance or management services for the purpose of providing services to the association (e) Disclose any financial or pr property that the promoter, if the promoter controls the association, has with respect to the contracting party to provide maintenance or management services. (f) Disclose any financial or proprietary interest that any member of the board of directors or any party providing maintenance or management services to the association has with the contracted party. »

Rob Samouce is a senior attorney with the Naples law firm of Samouce & Gal, PA. He is a Florida Bar Certified Specialist in Condominiums and Planned Development and focuses his practice in representing Condominiums, Cooperatives, and Homeowners Associations = in all of their legal needs, including procedural governance of their associations, enforcement covenants, appraisal recoveries, contract negotiations and contract litigation, real estate transactions, general commercial law, construction defect litigation and other general civil litigation. This column is not based on specific legal advice to anyone and is based on principles which may change from time to time. If you have any questions about the column, Rob can be reached at www.SandGlawfirm.com.

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