T.D. from Lake County, Florida writes:
Dear Mister Condo,
Our condo has two docks and 16 total boat spaces. It charges a one-time fee to have a boat space. If you don’t use the space for a period of time, you lose it back to the association. It has been suggested that because there are less boat slips than condo units, that it is not legal to charge for them and that they should be first come first serve. The rules are well spelled out (usage, timeframes) but wondering if there is an overall issue with the rules that would be over-ridden by state rules especially since fewer spots than condos. Not all spots are taken, but trying to understand rules to know how to handle questions as they come up.
Mister Condo replies:
T.D., state rules always supersede condo or HOA rules and federal rules supersede both of those. However, I am not aware of any rules from the county, state, or federal government that deal with boat slip disbursement on private property. I am not an attorney and you are certainly welcome to speak with one if you need to but I think, from my experience, the rules of the HOA will stand here. If “Use it or Lose it” is the kind of rule on the books in the governance documents, that is likely how the docks will be managed by the association. All the best!