Condominium and Cooperative Law in Florida
Condominiums and cooperatives are types of "common interest" communities.
These are residential areas with one or more buildings, each housing multiple residential units. The units are part of a larger building, which contains other residential units. In turn, there are several such buildings on the property. The units are rented or owned by the residents, but the building as a whole, and the land on which it sits, is owned either by a third party, or collectively by all the residents. The residents, in addition to mortgage or rent, typically have to pay a fee to cover maintenance of the common areas.
If you simply look at a condominium or cooperative community, you probably won't be able to tell if it's one or the other.
This is because there are no defining physical characteristics which are unique to one type of cooperative community, but not the other. The important differences aren't embodied in physical characteristics, but in the legal ownership arrangement governing the communities: in a condominium community, the residents own the units they live in. In a cooperative community, the units are rented.
Laws and Regulations Concerning Common Interest Communities in Polk County, Florida
Polk County, Florida likely has several laws and regulations concerning common interest communities. However, these are mostly limited to the laws and regulations (zoning, land use, etc.) that concern all real estate owners.
In general, the policies of the landowner or management board will have a much greater impact on the daily lives and conduct of residents than any state or local laws governing condominiums or cooperatives.
Because the land they occupy is typically private property, it is the owners of this property who make most of the rules that will affect your daily conduct. A responsible manager will typically make rules designed to balance your right to live as you please in your own residence, with the right your neighbors have to a clean, safe, and quiet living environment.
The authority of landowners is limited, however, and there are some rules that cannot be given legal effect. For instance, in Polk County, Florida, any rule which would exclude residents based on their race is completely unenforceable. Such discrimination is clearly prohibited under federal law, private property rights notwithstanding.
Can a Polk County, Florida Attorney Help?
If you have a problem with your landlord, your community association, or a neighbor (which the landlord is unwilling or unable to address), an efficient real estate attorney in Polk County, Florida will be able to help.