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Is condo living becoming a thing of the past? Insurance costs, HOA fees taking a toll

Florida has been home to many condo residents for years, but rising costs could lead fewer people to choose this lifestyle.
Posted at 9:06 AM, Jun 18, 2024

Condo living has been a popular lifestyle in Florida for decades, but with rising insurance costs and HOA fees could this lifestyle be coming to an end?

In the nearly two years since Hurricane Ian left a path of destruction through southwest Florida, Fox 4 has documented recovery efforts and battles with insurance providers.

While there may be fewer blue tarps on the roofs of single-family homes, condo complexes remain a different story.

At the Dolphin Way of Hickory Point condo complex on Little Hickory Island, Jim Boehme says residents have paid more than $50,000 a piece in assessments to get the complex back open.

 AFTER IAN: Still no insurance money for Bonita condos forced to spend upfront

“Very frustrated,” Boehme said, describing the situation. “If we had the insurance money we would be done.”

 

Dolphin Way of Hickory Point

In Cape Coral, the neighbors who live at the Somerville at Sandoval condo complex told Fox 4 they’re currently in a legal battle with their insurance provider.

“It’s been a hardship on a lot of residents here,” Anthony Marchese told Fox 4.

CAPE CORAL: $1,000,000 fine for insurance company; residents still aren't paid

Mark Friedlander with the Insurance Information Institute says master condo association insurance premiums have skyrocketed between 100-500% in recent years.

“While we’re seeing great improvements in the single-family home market. The condo market still has some hurdles to overcome, certainly,” said Friedlander.

A recent report from the real estate company Redfin found Florida condo prices are falling as cost of insurance and HOA fees have skyrocketed.

A new law, signed after the tragic condo building collapse in Surfside, FL, requires HOAs to perform more rigorous inspections and collect more money from residents for maintenance and repairs.

“We’re starting to see that with other condo structures as well after the hurricanes, particularly Ian, where these master association policies don’t have enough coverage to cover the losses,” said Friedlander.

Friedlander recommends condo residents speak with their insurance agent to make sure they have enough coverage.