Friday, July 22, 2005
That's Just Wrong: No Hurricane Shutters Allowed
A developer in Iowa is telling a South Florida woman that she can't protect her home from hurricanes. She is saying That's Just Wrong. Here's the Night Team's Craig Stevens.
WSVN -- Robin and Yofi love walking around her Boca Raton development.
She moved here last year right after hurricane season.
Robin Traiger: "It was a mess. There were lots of trees down. Big trees."
This area was hit hard by storms. So, as hurricane season approached this year, she decided to get ready.
Robin: "There's a lot of glass. To me there's a lot of glass. But it only takes one broken window for all the water to come in."
It was too late to get commercial shutters, so Robin decided to order plywood.
Robin: "So I hired a handyman to measure and price out for me what it would cost to have plywood shutters."
But since she lives in a condo conversion where there isn't a homeowners association yet, Robin sent an email to the developer before ordering the shutters. The property manager came back with a stunning response.
Robin Reading Email: "Since Hurricane season, I have been discussing the shutters issue with the developer, and they stated that residents can use plywood and install it on their windows. It can only be installed in the interior of your home, not the exterior of the building."
The developer is based in Iowa… Now, they don't get many hurricanes there, or they would know that plywood inside the window isn't going to do much good. Since once the window is broken, the water comes in.
Robin: "I know somebody who has an apartment that was damaged last year during the hurricanes. She still doesn't have everything fixed."
Robin: "I don't want to go through that. I don't think anyone should have to go through that."
She called the developer and begged him to reconsider. The answer was still "No." No protection on the exterior of the building. She says That's Just Wrong.
Condo Lawyer Andrew Demos: "Glazier and Associates, may I help you?"
Condo attorney Andrew Demos agrees.
Andrew: "If there's a rule designed to protect the cosmetics of the community, that rule would be outweighed by the safety concerns for the homeowners."
7 News made several attempts to contact the developer in Iowa. Our calls were not returned. And as a storm once again nears Florida, Robin says she'll put in the order for the shutters.
Robin: " I figured if that's all I can get, that's all I can get. And, then I figured I would order commercial shutters for next year."
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