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Where can I file a complaint if I have problems with my new or used manufactured/mobile home in Florida?
Monday, June 11, 2018
Start With Dealer Or Manufacturer
“It’s best to first go to the dealer or manufacturer about the problems you’re having, of course,” according to Vickie Ladd, who coordinates complaint resolution for the Manufactured Housing Section of the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. “But, if you are not satisfied, there is a one-year warranty period required by Florida Statute and you can file a complaint with us.”
Call for help at (813) 302-5036, or download a complaint form at http://www.flhsmv.gov/dmv/Forms/BMHRV/81095.pdf. Allow 2 to 4 weeks after you file your written complaint for them to make an appointment for a Compliance Examiner to visit your home and review your unresolved issues.
Minimum Requirements For Complaint
Here are some specific requirements and limitations of the complaint process, all of which is governed by Florida Statue 320.836:
- You must have already submitted a complaint in writing to the dealer or manufacturer stating the substance of the warranty defect, and then supply documentation of it with your complaint registration packet to the state.
- Warranty term on the home is one year from issuance of certificate of occupancy by location jurisdiction (not the date of sale).
- If your home is over one year old and produced by a Florida manufacturer, they will notify the manufacturer of the complaint for their follow-up with the Federal (HUD) program, and will advise you of their findings.
- If your home is over one year old and produced by an out-of-state manufacturer, they will notify the HUD State Administrative Agency (SAA) in the state of manufacture, which will follow up with the factory.
- Florida’s jurisdiction is limited to structural, mechanical, electrical, plumbing, heating, fire and life safety. They have no jurisdiction over non-structural, cosmetic items such as floor coverings, panel blemishes, and paint colors, for example.
- If you purchased a used home, it must have been from a Florida licensed dealer. The state has no jurisdiction over private sales, and is limited to contractual agreements provided by the selling dealer, and also restricted to problems regarding the installation of the home (not the construction) for used homes.
- All sale agreements must be in writing. Verbal, non-documented agreements are not acceptable.
If all this sounds like you might be entering a bureaucratic maze that will end up going nowhere, take heart. “These people do not like hearing from us,” says Vickie. “We hold their licenses to do business in Florida and also a performance bond. They are usually very responsive.”
Complaints Outside Of Florida
Other states have similar dispute resolution programs, and you can find a list of them at http://www.huddrp.net/contact-a-state/.
Complaints About Mobile Home Park Owner
To file a complaint about a Florida mobile home park owner, see our blog post ”Where can I file a complaint about a mobile home park owner?"
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