Your association needs predictable cash flow in order to pay bills and maintain reserves. When owners do not pay their assessments, it throws a wrench in the whole system.
There is a relatively standard order you can follow to convince owners to pay or to secure your assessment income. This article will look at general steps, but please keep in mind that your situation might demand different action.
Sending a letter
As explained by the State of Florida Property Management Association, your best first step will probably be sending notifications to the owner in question. Especially if the owner in question lives out of state, you may not have a serious problem on your hands. It could just be that the assessment got lost in the shuffle.
Filing a lien
If you do not see favorable results from your cordial letter, it could be time to begin the legal process. This usually starts with filing a lien.
More specifically, you probably have a legal obligation to notify the owner that you intent to place a lien on the property. After you send a letter satisfying this obligation, then you have the option to move forward by filing the official lien documents with the court.
If you still do not get a favorable response from your unit owner, you will probably want to start the process of reclaiming the unit. At this point, you may not be surprised that the next step is yet another notification. You have an obligation to tell the owner that you intend to foreclose before your case reaches a resolution.
It could be a good idea to put your entire strategy in place before you begin. This should help you organize your time and meet all of the relevant deadlines. Of course, the earlier you begin, the sooner you have a chance of correcting your revenue issues.