B.W. from Pinellas County, Florida writes:
Dear Mister Condo,
I own a condo in Pinellas County, FL. I also own a deeded boat slip on the property. Per the condo docs and bylaws, I am allowed to sell or rent my slip to anyone and does not have to live at the condo and the association must provide egress to those using the slip. Are there any restrictions per the county on “deeded” slips that would not allow me to rent my slip or can the association prevent me from renting or selling my slip to whom I choose? In short, what control does the condo association or Pinellas County have over the decisions that pertain to a deeded boat slip on a condominium property?
Mister Condo replies:
B.W., Florida Riparian rights are generally in favor of anyone seeking access to water. In a state with as much river, lake, and ocean front property, that isn’t too surprising. However, when it comes to private property such as your condo association, the Board can get creative in ways to prevent parking on their grounds. That doesn’t stop someone from walking to the boat slip but they may not be able to park on the common grounds without obtaining proper authorization (a guest pass, for instance). Since you have the deeded right to use the slip as you see fit, my guess is that you are free to do so. As for your non-association dock renter, they still have to follow the rules of the association to access the common grounds. I am not an attorney and offer no legal advice in this column. You should ask a locally qualified attorney familiar with the specific laws of Pinellas County for a legal opinion if you feel your rights are being denied. All the best!