Boynton condo owners could be forced out

BOYNTON BEACH, FL (WFLX) - The days that Bob Domanick and his neighbors can sit at their condo pool in Boynton Beach may be numbered. Each one may be forced to sell their units back to the company that owns the property.

"It's just not fair, these are our homes, we pay our mortgages, and insurance and we're told we have to leave," said Dale Domanick.

A glimmer of hope that House Bill 1061 would help - was crushed. It didn't make it to the next legislative session that begins Monday. "It did not get to the subcommittee while we were still holding those hearings, and so the bill is most likely dead," said State Representative Lori Berman.

As the law stands now, if a company owns 90 percent of the condo units on a property, it can purchase the remaining units for fair market value. The problem for these residents is that fair market value is a far cry from what they paid for their homes in 2006. "A lot of us are underwater, which means we owe more than they're willing to give us, and that puts us in a tough position," said Bob Domanick.

A petition created last month on www.change.orshows similar fights are popping up in Tampa and Panama City.

The Domanicks have started warning their friends, so they don't end up in the same situation. "When we tell friends at home who are looking to retire, they don't want to come down here and retire and be subject to the same thing. I tell them check every statute in the state because this could happen to you," said Dale Domanick.

Northland Investment Corporation is the majority owner of Via Lugano. WPTV's calls to their office weren't returned Wednesday.

It's unclear when Northland may try to buy out the remaining 30 or so owners. If Northland owns all the units, it could turn the community into a rental property.

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