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Legal Hotline/Users/adamp/Desktop/MAR_IMGS/Legal


License Law
Q Must my office have a conference room?

A No. Section 475.22 (1), Florida Statutes, provides in part that “each active broker shall maintain an office, which shall consist of at least one enclosed room in a building of stationary construction.” Thus, there is no specific requirement to have a separate conference room.
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Advertising
Q Am I required to include my phone number in my advertisements?

A No. The advertising rule (Chapter 61J2-10.025, Florida Administrative Code) no longer requires a phone number to be in an advertisement.

Q Must I mail the monthly reconciliation statement to the Florida Real Estate Commission?

A There is no legal requirement that the broker mail the monthly reconciliation statements to FREC. These statements should be maintained, however, pursuant to Section 475.5015, Florida Statutes, as a part of the official brokerage business records.

Broker Business
Q If I want to be a transaction broker for a customer, am I still required to give him or her the Transaction Broker Notice?

A Yes. However, starting July 1, the law changes, and you’ll no longer have to give customers a Transaction Broker Notice. If you don’t want to be a transaction broker, you will still be required to provide the customer either a Single Agent Notice or the No Brokerage Relationship Notice, even after July 1.

Condominiums
Q Have there been any recent changes with respect to the disclosures required by a condominium developer?

A Yes. In 2007, the Legislature amended the disclosure required of condominium developers in Section 718.503 (1)(a)1, Florida Statutes, to include three add-itional sentences.  “The three new sentences of the disclosure read as follows:

Figures contained in any budget delivered to the buyer prepared in accordance with the Condominium Act are estimates only and represent an approximation of future expenses based on facts and circumstances existing at the time of the preparation of the budget by the developer. Actual costs of such items may exceed the estimated costs. Such changes in cost do not constitute material adverse changes in the offering.”

Contracts
Q I have a fully executed FAR9 Residential Sale and Purchase Contract along with the FAR SSA-1 Short Sale Addendum to Purchase and Sale Contract.

The first box in Section 2 of the addendum, which reads, “All time periods under the Contract shall commence from the date Seller delivers written notice to Buyer that the Contract has been approved by the Lender,” is checked off. Does this mean that there is no contract until the Lender has approved?

A No. You still have a contract because it’s only a condition precedent to performance and not a condition precedent to formation. The effective date is still as defined in Section 11 (a) of the contract. Checking off the first box in Section 2 of the addendum simply delays any time periods (e.g., inspection and financing deadlines).

License Law
Q I received my sales associate license 16 months ago. My initial licensure period is nearly over but I want to sit for the broker’s exam. Am I allowed to skip the postlicensure education if I can obtain the broker’s license before the end of my initial license period?

A No. Section 475.17(2)(c), Florida Statutes, requires that a sales associate may not be licensed as a broker unless, in addition to the other requirements of law, the sales associate has completed the postlicensure education requirement of the sales associate licenses.

Real Estate Practice
Q As a new broker, I’m starting my own real estate brokerage company. Since commercial office space is too expensive, may my office be located in my home?

A Yes. Rule 61J2-10.022, Florida Administrative Code, provides that a broker’s office “may be in a residential location, if not contrary to local zoning ordinances, provided the minimum office requirements are met and the required broker’s sign is properly displayed... .”

Search through more Q&As online in the Legal Center at floridarealtors.org