In response to the escalating cases of construction fraud victimizing Florida homeowners, the need to fortify the Homeowners Construction Recovery Fund (HCRF) has become glaringly apparent. Established in 1993, the HCRF has served as a vital resource for those defrauded by licensed contractors. However, recent data exposes a concerning uptick in homeowners falling prey to fraudulent practices, necessitating a comprehensive overhaul of the fund. The last adjustment to the HCRF was made in 2016, and with construction costs on the rise, it is imperative to modernize the fund to shield homeowners from financial ruin. Floridians For Honest Lending advocates for Senate Bill 414, a crucial initiative that aims to update the fund’s payout caps, aligning them with current costs and providing a robust defense against the dire consequences of fraud-induced bankruptcy and foreclosure.
The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation oversees the HCRF, and recent statistics indicate a troubling increase in claims, signaling a growing crisis for Florida homeowners facing financial jeopardy due to construction-related problems. Read more about these trends in our blog post.
Senate Bill 414 addresses this urgency by proposing increments in payout caps for both Division 1 and Division 2 contractors, ensuring that the fund aligns with current and future cost increases, providing enhanced financial protection for homeowners.
Real-life cases highlight the harsh reality of construction fraud, such as the historic scam involving Miami real estate developer Doug Cox and the fraudulent pool contracting scheme orchestrated by Brian Washburn. These cases underscore the inadequacy of the current HCRF caps, emphasizing the urgent need for increased fund caps to safeguard Florida homeowners.