What SB 4-D Means for Your Condo: A Closer Look at Florida’s Safety Legislation

June 19, 2024


In response to the tragic Surfside condominium collapse in 2021, Florida significantly revised its building safety regulations through the enactment of Senate Bill 4-D (SB 4-D). This critical legislation establishes stringent requirements for Structural Milestone Inspections (SMI) and Structural Integrity Reserve Studies (SIRS), which help building owners and managers to identify structural issues and plan for necessary repairs in order to prevent future tragedies.

SB 4-D is designed to enhance the resilience of Florida’s aging infrastructure, and it fundamentally alters the management of condominiums and cooperative buildings throughout the state. The bill mandates comprehensive evaluations and financial planning for all buildings three stories or taller, aiming to bolster safety and sustainability as well as ensure the well-being of residents across Florida.

Overview of Senate Bill 4-D

Enacted on May 26, 2022, Senate Bill 4-D addresses the urgent need for enhanced building safety measures in Florida. The legislation mandates comprehensive structural safety inspections and the establishment of structural integrity reserve studies for buildings three stories or taller. These provisions are designed to improve the physical and financial management of building repairs and maintenance, guaranteeing that buildings near coastlines, as well as aging structures, undergo thorough evaluations by licensed professionals. By strengthening both structural and fiscal health, SB 4-D seeks to avert future tragedies and foster a culture of proactive maintenance and financial responsibility among property managers and association boards.

Key Components of the Bill

Senate Bill 4-D introduces strict structural safety measures, requiring inspections for buildings three stories or taller to ensure their integrity and safety. These inspections are divided into two phases: Phase One involves a comprehensive visual assessment by a Florida-licensed architect or engineer to identify “substantial structural deterioration.” If issues are identified, Phase Two inspections are triggered. These inspections involve more detailed techniques, such as materials testing, to thoroughly assess the damage and plan necessary repairs.

Additionally, the bill mandates SIRS, which are crucial for assessing financial needs for major repairs and ensuring that associations have adequately funded reserves to handle future maintenance and compliance. SIRS are required every ten years and must be conducted by with the visual inspection portion of the study performed by a licensed engineer or architect. Rimkus’ team of building experts includes experienced reserve specialists, engineers, and architects who are licensed in Florida and qualified to perform SMI and SIRS.

Implementation and Compliance

SB 4-D sets stringent compliance deadlines to address building safety concerns promptly. Buildings existing as of July 1, 1992, must complete initial inspections by December 31, 2024, and newly qualifying buildings must undergo inspections by the end of the year they reach the 30-year mark or 25 years if within three miles of the coastline. The legislation also mandates that SIRS be completed by December 31, 2024, for all applicable associations. These requirements underscore the critical nature of timely adherence to these enhanced safety criteria, with thorough evaluations carried out by certified professionals uniformly across the state.

Financial Implications

The inspections mandated by Senate Bill 4-D place significant financial responsibilities on condominium associations. Immediate financial impacts can include potentially increased dues or special assessments to cover the costs of compliance, which could be substantial for older buildings requiring extensive repairs. Adhering to SB 4-D’s requirements helps mitigate the risks of catastrophic building failures and associated liabilities and, in turn, enhances the safety and longevity of properties. This proactive compliance can lead to increased property values and reduced insurance premiums, whereas non-compliance could result in severe financial penalties, increased insurance costs, and significant property devaluation.

Qualified Professionals

The implementation of SB 4-D has faced critiques, particularly regarding the feasibility of meeting tight deadlines and the availability of qualified professionals to conduct the required inspections. Many associations, especially those with older buildings, find these deadlines daunting due to the extensive scope of inspections required.

For more than 25 years, Rimkus experts have conducted structural inspections and prepared reserve studies for clients in Florida, helping to ensure both the safety of residents and compliance with Florida regulations. We offer our clients a cohesive suite of services in-house, which allows us to deliver the efficiency and peace of mind that comes with the “one-stop shop” experience.  In addition to the Phase I and Phase II inspections of the SMI, we can provide a comprehensive engineering and construction management service including designs, contract specifications, project bidding, construction inspections, and project closeout. Furthermore, the SIRS-related statutory language covers a fixed list of components which are crucial to the structural integrity of the building. We can provide clients with a separate reserve study to capture other components that associations typically reserve for, including mechanical systems, elevators, site elements, recreational elements, and anything else an association requires for management of their property.


As Senate Bill 4-D transforms building safety in Florida, it emphasizes both structural integrity and financial readiness to handle emergencies. While introducing significant changes that come with considerable responsibilities, the legislation’s ultimate goal is to ensure the safety and longevity of Florida’s residential buildings. By entrusting their inspections to the experts at Rimkus, Florida building owners and managers gain an experienced and qualified partner to provide guidance through the complexities of SB 4-D compliance.

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