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Short-term rentals spark battle between Clearwater Beach condo owners, homeowner’s association

in Local Courts by

Clearwater Beach condominium owners are facing off with their homeowner’s association over short-term rentals, with accusations against five owners of using deception to dodge a 14-day minimum-lease rule.

Crescent Beach Club is a waterfront condominium complex Clearwater Beach managed by Associa Gulf Coast. According to recent records, Joseph N. Joyce Jr. serves as the homeowner’s association president. A Massachusetts resident, Joseph and Nancy Joyce are listed as nonresident co-owners of a unit.

Owners of five condos at the Club — Jeffrey and Regina Paglialonga of Winter Park; Joyce Enterprises Inc. (Jacob and Alice Joseph); McCullough Properties LLC; Jeffrey Lemajeur, as trustee of the Jeffrey W. Lemajeur Revocable Trust and Deborah Lemajeur, as trustee of the Deborah M. Lemajeur Revocable Trust — have filed suit against the complex and Association.

Each of the five units has been offered as short-term vacation rentals.

None of the plaintiffs have filed for homestead exemptions, signifying all are also non-resident owners.

Bylaws of Crescent Beach Club state that any lease issued by condo owners must be for a minimum of 14 days. In 2015, the homeowner’s association initiated an arbitration action against each of the plaintiffs — alleging they have violated that rule.

The five owners argue that if renters didn’t stay the full 14 days under their lease, the units are not available for re-rent until that lease period ends.

While each of the plaintiffs submitted short-term 14-day leases for approval, the Association, pointing to a number of online advertisements, says the units were openly being offered for as little as a few days at a time.

Co-plaintiffs Jeffrey Adam “Jeff” Paglialonga and wife Regina Anne “Gina” Paglialonga own a 2,125-square-foot condo they purchased in 2013 for $575,000. The couple run a booking service called Teeming Vacation Rentals.

After the arbitration process stalemated, the owners filed a 140-page suit March 30 in Pinellas County Circuit Court, seeking the court to rule that the leases are legal under the Association’s bylaws.

As evidence of rule-breaking, however, the Association cites a HomeAway.com ad from Jeff and Gina Paglialonga, which says:

“At Teeming Vacation Rentals, we take the hassle out of travel. Our friendly and knowledgeable ‘teem’ offer the personalized service you need to find the perfect fit for your vacation. We actually want to talk to you! Nightly rates listed are based on a 14-night stay. Shorter stays are welcomed when we have availability so please ‘send a message’ or ‘send email’ to us for an exact quote. ‘Teem’ up with Teeming Vacation Rentals and book your dream vacation today!”

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