Florida’s Light & Life Park, Inc. a.k.a. Light & Life Park (hereinafter called “the Park” is an integrated auxiliary and outreach arm of the Free Methodist Church. It is a Christian retirement Community of adults at least 55 years of age who live in the Park a minimum of thirty (30) days each year (not necessarily all in one month, but totaling 30 days annually). The purpose of which is for worship, fellowship, recreation, relaxation and work.
The Park contains approximately 125 acres within its boundaries, some developed, and some remains in its natural form. The community is gated and roads are private and used for cars, trucks, golf carts, bicycles, and pedestrian use for walking and running.
There are 45 site built, cinder block homes, 24 Villas (or condos), 14 double wide trailers within what is called “Project 14”, another 115 Mobile homes both single and double wide, and 72 permanently Parked RV units. The Park also rents out 12 RV Lots with full hook ups, and 8 Cabins, all of which share a centrally located men’s and women’s bath house and coin-operated laundry facility. In addition there are 9 Guest Rooms, most sharing a bath between 2 efficiency units. It is considered a suite if both rooms are rented for the convenience of a private bath.
Other facilities include a Memorial Library, pool, tennis courts, pickle ball court, shuffleboard, miniature golf course, billiard tables, ping pong tables, horseshoe pits, 9 hole Golf Course, Fitness Center, Wood Shop, Beautification Greenhouse, and a playground area for visiting children.
Light and Life Free Methodist Church is located within the Park, with seating for approximately 550. Hood Hall is used for meetings and occasional dining, seating 350. Maxwell Commons is located in the center of the Villas and is available for use for smaller gatherings. All locations are air conditioned/heated for comfort.
Suggestions for the betterment of the Park are welcome. Constructive criticism, or complaints, should be presented to the Park Administrator in writing. The Park Administrator will respond to the submitter within three working days.
As a Christian Community, we care and share, however, we do not have the facilities or personnel to be able to provide individualized personal care for residents. This should be taken into consideration as couples/individuals consider their future plans. While other individuals may volunteer assistance with a meal, transportation, or other very temporary help, it cannot be expected, nor are the members of the Park always able themselves to provide this kind of care. Therefore, prior to having a need develop, it is the individual members responsibility to make prior arrangements should intensive care (temporary or extended) become necessary. If intervention is required, an individualized case will be brought to the Park Board’s attention and they will render a decision as deemed necessary.
Office Hours are determined by the Board of Directors and posted at the office.
Office equipment (computers, printers, FAX machines, copiers, powered tools and equipment etc.) is strictly for official Park business only and will be operated only by Park personnel. Paid Park staff will maintain all facilities and grounds equipment. FAX, copying, and Notary services are available for Park residents/ Renters during regular Park office hours. Fees are listed in the office. The Park does not provide tax or legal services.
A Maintenance staff handles non-emergency situations during regular working hours, Monday through Friday. Permanent and Winter Residents provide many volunteer hours in order to keep the Community working smoothly and efficiently.
Maintenance Requests in response to Park maintenance problems should be brought to the Park Administrator’s attention by filling out a Park “Maintenance Request Form”. These are located on the wall just inside the main office door. Leave the form with the office staff and they will forward it to the Park Administrator. He will assign the request to the appropriate staff member. Non- Emergency items will be addressed as funds and staff time is available, but only if a Maintenance Request form has been filled out. The Park Administrator will respond to submitter for non-emergency work orders within 5 working days.
Due to insurance requirements, no powered equipment or vehicles can be loaned out to Residents/Renters for personal use, and must be operated by Park employees only.
Park management and staff are not responsible for the loss, repair or upkeep of personal property.
Each year the Board of Directors reviews and establishes rates for all Park facilities, lessees, and property owners. The rate sheet is available in the office. Clubs and various groups establish their own rates, and collect their own fees.
The spirit of the Park residents is the Golden Rule, “Do unto others as you would have them do to you.” Matthew 7:12
In an effort to promote a more orderly community, and in the interest of the common good, all residents, resident guests, and renters are expected to read or to be made aware of Park Rules and regulations.
Rules and Regulations
Section 1: Property Ownership and Transfers
1.1 PROPERTY OWNERSHIP
- a) Florida’s Light and Life Park, Inc. was formed September 22, 1998 as a Christian Retirement community for 55+ year old adults who are looking for a southern home. Those who meet the age requirement and are in good standing with a Free Methodist Church may own or lease property in the Park. (Exception: Non-Free Methodists may qualify under Article 3.4 of the By-laws.)
- b) The owner must live in the Park a minimum of 30 days each year. This does not need to be all at the same time, however, sometime during the year the total number of days must meet the minimum requirement of 30 days.
- c) Only one Light and Life Park residence shall be owned at one time. [EXCEPTION: When changing residences, the original is listed for sale for no longer than one year except as provided in Rule 1.6 (b).]
- d) Park Members shall file a “Successor Designation Form” with the Park office to indicate what kind of successor document the owner has, such as a Living Trust or Last Will and Testament, and who the successor will be, or who will inherit the property, or take responsibility for the property should the owners become incapacitated for any reason.
- e) When a property owner remarries, an office contact should be made to fill out a new “Owner Information Form”, and a new “Successor Designation Form”. If the new spouse is not to receive the property but is to have it as long as they are alive, then a life estate is to be stated as the intention. (A Successor Designation Form is available in the Park office for this purpose.)
1.2 PURCHASING/LEASING PROPERTY
Only members who are at least 55 years of age and are in good standing with a Free Methodist Church may own or lease property in the Park. (Exception: Non-Free Methodists may qualify under Article 3.4 of the By-Laws).
- a) NEW APPLICANTS must obtain an “Application for Membership, Florida’s Light & Life Park, Inc.,” from the Park office. The completed application is then sent, or given, to the Park office with a non-refundable Application fee of $100.00. After references are verified, the Park Administrator then forwards all applications to the Park Board for their consideration.
- b) ALL applicants must have Board approval before purchasing/leasing a property in the Park.
- c) From the date of approval, applicants will have two years to purchase/lease property after which the application will expire. An applicant may re-apply within thirty (30) days at a reduced fee of $25 which is good for an additional 2 years. Otherwise, the Application Fee will be required again.
- d) Non-Free Methodists, who have Board approval, should check with the Park office to determine the status of the “percentage quota” before proceeding further.
- e) An approved applicant (or designee) will negotiate a signed sales agreement directly with the seller (or designee). (See “LISTING PROPERTY FOR SALE” Section 1.4)
- f) An approved applicant (or designee) and the seller (or designee) will then make an appointment with the Park office to finalize legal paperwork, pay required fees, and secure a deed or lease.
- g) At Closing, a new Member must clearly state successor rights, whether in a Last Will and Testament, a Living Trust or a Life Estate by filling out a “Successor Designation Form”.
- h) Once a member: A member may retain purchasing privileges between the selling and purchasing of another property.
1.3 SELLING A PROPERTY/UNIT
- a) The seller (or designee) MUST schedule a pre-sale inspection of the property with the Park Administrator who will note any defects which must be remedied before the property can be approved for sale if it is to remain in the Park.
- b) The seller (or designee) MAY request the Park Office to place the property on the ‘PROPERTY SALES LIST’.
- c) The seller (or designee) and approved applicant/buyer (or designee) will negotiate the details and conditions of the sales agreement which is to be signed by both parties.
- d) The seller (or designee) and buyer (or designee) will schedule an appointment with the Park office to finalize legal paperwork and pay any required fees.
- e) Seller must sell or deed his/her property to only ONE buyer, whether a single person or a husband and wife, not to multiple individuals.
- f) While property is waiting to be sold it must be properly maintained. This includes inside pest control, mold control, general cleaning, and on the outside weed control and lawn care.
The following two lists shall be maintained by the Park Office:
1) APPROVED APPLICANTS LIST
This is a list of approved applicants and is NOT prioritized so that any applicant on the list is eligible to purchase/lease any property which is for sale in the Park. (Exception: Free Methodists always have priority.)
2) PROPERTY SALES LIST
This is a current list of properties/units for sale in the Park. The list will include the seller’s name, address, phone number, a brief description of the property/unit and the asking price as furnished by the seller.
*APPROVED APPLICANTS LIST and PROPERTY SALES LIST will be distributed to Board Members during the months of January, February and March. A copy of the PROPERTY SALES LIST is available throughout the year online, and APPROVED APPLICANTS LIST is available upon request.
1.4 LISTING PROPERTY FOR SALE
- a) Properties cannot be listed with any realtor.
- b) They may be listed with the Park office.
- c) They must be handled as described in these Rules and Regulations.
- a) A Property Transfer Fee of $100.00 is payable by the seller to the Park on all sales transactions of villas, houses, travel trailers, Park models or mobile homes.
- b) New Applicants will pay a First Time Resident fee of $1,000.00 when a new home is purchased. When completing an application the Application fee of $100.00 is required and will be applied toward the fulfillment of the First Time Resident Fee.
- c) Any person living in the Park with a resident(s) must go through the process of obtaining approval of the Board of Directors.
1.6 OWNER RESPONSIBILITIES
- a) Any unit offered for sale must be sold within one year, but may be rented during this period. An application to rent must be submitted to the Park office for approval.
- b) If the unit is not sold during this time, the owner must request an extension in writing for approval by the Board of Directors. If this is not done a 20% charge will be compounded as outlined in c) [The “Owner’s Request for Extension to Sell” form is available in the Park office.]
- c) If the minimum residency (Refer to 13.8 of By-Laws & Rule 1.1b)) or allotted time limit for resale of one year is not met, the owner will be charged a 20% increase in their annual fee for the second year. If this becomes multiple years without a sale, or without meeting the residency requirement, then each subsequent year the fee will increase.
(The following is an example based on the 2019 annual fee of $1,795. Any annual increases in fees would increase this total.)
- Second year criteria if annual fee is not met-
If annual fee: $1,795.00, add (20% increase) or $359.00 = $2,154.00
- Third year criteria is not met-
To the $2,154.00 (new base) add any increase in Annual Fee (e.g. $50.00) or $2,204.00. To this add $441.00 (20% increase). Total due would be $2,154.00 + $50.00 + $441.00 = $2,645.00
- Fourth year criteria not met-
To this new 3rd year base add any increase in the Annual fee (e.g. $50.00) then add (20% increase) OR $2,645.00 + $50.00 (possible annual fee increase) = $2,695.00 + $539.00 (20% increase) = $3,234.00
This formula will be used, and continue to increase, until the unit is sold or owner’s 30 day annual residency requirement is fulfilled.
- a) All deed holders and lessees of real property must pay their own taxes as assessed by the county and/or state agencies.
- b) All lessees of property designated as leased will be billed taxes by the Park office as assessed by the county and/or state agencies.
- c) All taxes billed by the Park office must be paid in full by December 15th of the current year.
Section 2: Safety
2.1 The Church, Hood Hall, and the Library are the suggested emergency shelters in the event of severe weather. It is recommended that each resident stay tuned to radio/television information for updates.
2.2 Please drive responsibly on all Park roads. The speed limit is 15 MPH on all roads in the Park. OBEY STOP SIGNS.
2.3 Automobiles and trucks are restricted to established roads only.
2.4 Golf carts are restricted to streets or grassy areas and are NOT TO BE DRIVEN ON SIDEWALKS when walkers or bikers are present. Children who do not possess a valid driver’s license may not drive a golf cart unless accompanied by a responsible adult. Riders of bicycles and tricycles should use extreme caution when driving on sidewalks, ALWAYS GIVING WAY TO PEDESTRIANS.
2.5 Golf carts and bicycles MUST HAVE HEADLIGHTS AND LIGHTS OR REFLECTORS ON THE REAR, and must be used from dusk to dawn.
2.6 Firearms are to be used only with permission of the Park Administrator. The owner must notify the Park Office if they have firearms on Park grounds.
Section 3: General
3.1 MEMBER RESPONSIBILITIES
- a) All property owned or leased at the Park shall be occupied by the owner or lessee at least thirty (30) days per calendar year. The Board may permit otherwise when written request is made for a waiver. A Renter is not a Lessee or Owner.
- b) Members (Park Residence Owners) may have house guests in their residence; guests under 55 are limited to stays of 2 weeks unless approved by the Park Administrator. If the Member needs additional space to accommodate guests, the Member may seek to rent a Park-owned facility (cabin, guest room, or RV lot) for a limited period provided the Member will also be residing at the Park. Such a “Sponsoring Member” will be responsible for the behavior of their guests, consistent with the Bylaws and Rules of the Park.
- c) Those owners who wish to rent out their residence must annually complete the “Owner’s Application to Rent Residence” Form and submit it to the Park Administrator.
- d) Residents are asked to notify the Park office when having house guests for more than overnight.
- e) Each homeowner, renter, or lessee is responsible to see that all Rules of the Park are followed by those occupying their space. Absence of the owner from the property does not remove his/her responsibility for staying in compliance with the Rules.
- f) Property may only be owned by one owner, whether a single person, or husband and wife, not by multiple individuals.
- g) Residents must provide the Park office with a key to all structures on their property.
- h) Residents are asked to notify the Park office when leaving the Park for any extended period of time. Also, water and gas to the unit must be turned off at this time.
- i) Residents are asked to notify the Park office when arriving at the Park after being away for an extended period of time.
- j) Power outages should be reported directly to Tampa Electric Company (1-877-588-1010).
- k) All mobile homes, travel trailers, park models, and houses will be kept in good repair and appearance, painted and washed as necessary. Rubbish and unsightly accumulations must not be allowed to collect on the property or carports.
- l) All landscaping will be arranged to make it as easy as possible for mowing.
Trimming, weeding, and grooming of flowers and shrubs is the responsibility of the resident even when not present during the summer. All debris must be removed.
The Park Administrator, or those acting on the Park’s behalf, will inform owners of any violations of this nature, and give them 10 days to remedy the situation; after that time it will be turned over to an outside service to be taken care of at the owner’s expense plus a $20 administration fee.
- m) Residents who are gone for the summer are to store objects that could become a hazard due to high winds or hurricanes!
3.2 GUESTS, RENTERS and VISITORS
- a) All those seeking to become a renter in the Park must submit an “Application to Rent a Residence at Light and Life Park” Form to the Park office for review and approval by the Park Administrator.
- b) Rent payments are to be made to the owner. The Park will not accept rent payments from renters for Park fees. Park fees are the responsibility of the owner.
- c) Visitors are welcome, but are requested to register at the Park office when they arrive or as soon as the Park office is open after their arrival.
- d) All Park visitors, renters, or those staying as guests in the Park are required to be respectful and to abide by Park rules. (See 3.3 & 3.4)
3.3 FACILITY USE
- a) All facilities of the Park are only for the use of members and their guests, and approved renters.
- b) Curfew in the Park is 11:00 p.m. for persons under 18 years of age unless accompanied by an adult.
- c) All recreational facilities are closed during Sunday morning and all evening services.
- d) Appropriate dress (including swim wear) is expected of all residents and their guests at all times.
- e) Smoking, alcoholic beverages, and illicit drugs are not allowed in the Park.
- f) No burning (open fires) is allowed within the Park.
- g) Recycling is strongly encouraged. There are co-mingled recycle dumpsters to be used for newspapers, magazines, phone books, plastics (bottles and containers with numbers 1-8), glass, and other metals (steel or tin cans). For larger metal objects, place them in the designated enclosure. NO STYROFOAM, TRASH, OR PLASTIC BAGS or items with FOOD are allowed in the recycle dumpster.
- h) The Park may bar any person or persons from any or all recreational facilities for improper behavior or infraction of Park Rules and Regulations as determined by the Board.
3.4 PET POLICY
- a) Pets are not allowed in the Park. Those violating this rule will be asked to remove the pet from the Park.
- b) As a courtesy to visitors, pets may be allowed in the Park for TWO DAYS ONLY, provided the pet is kept under strict control at all times, and waste is properly disposed.
Section 4: Building/Construction
4.1 GENERAL REQUIREMENTS
- a) Before beginning any external addition, alteration, or remodeling to your home or lot which includes using concrete or paving bricks in the parking area, patio, or sidewalks please refer to the Park Bylaws, Section 13.10 through 13.13. A drawing showing the proposed construction must be submitted to the Park Administrator at least one week prior to construction. The Park Administrator will review the request and reply in writing within 3 working days giving approval, recommendations, or denial of the project. No work shall begin without written approval from the Park Administrator.
- b) All construction must have a permit according to the Hillsborough County Building Codes and Florida Building Codes. Call (813) 272-5600 to determine if a permit is required.
- c) Any roof replacement on a Concrete Block home must have a contractor and a permit must be obtained per Hillsborough County regulations.
- d) Consult the Park Administrator for guidelines regarding location of property lines and County/Park setback regulations.
- e) Roofs and awnings may extend beyond the setbacks for a distance of one foot. Carport roofs may extend to the front of the property line. Satellite dishes and A/C units may extend to the property line.
- f) The Board of Directors may declare a Mobile Home, Park Model, permanent RV or concrete block home uninhabitable as a result of damage, deterioration, age or neglect. The Board may cite any owner for violation of this provision. An owner cited will have 30 days to correct the problem.
4.2 MOBILE HOMES, PARK MODELS, and PERMANENT RV’s
- a) All mobile home floors must be above the 100-year flood level of 108.25 feet NGVD and certified by a registered engineer.
- b) All Mobile Homes, Park Models, and RV’s which are permanently set must be tied down. It is highly recommended that sheds also be tied down if they are free-standing.
- c) Skirting is required on all Mobile homes, Park Models and RV units which are permanently set.
- d) Any Mobile Home, Park Model or RV that is permanently brought into the Park must be certified by the Park Administrator before being placed on a lot.
- e) There shall be no add-on buildings attached to a Mobile Home, Park Model, or RV that is permanently set. Add-on structures must be freestanding. (This includes carports, screen rooms, Florida rooms, etc.)
4.3 PARK MODEL and PERMANENT RV RESTRICTIONS
- a) A storage shed will be allowed on lots with travel trailers or Park Models in accordance with county setback requirements. See Park Administrator for details.
- b) There must be a minimum of 4 feet of clearance between the drip line of a storage shed or awning and the unit next to it.
- c) Rain gutters must be installed on all Florida rooms, awnings, screen rooms, carports, etc., to carry water to drainage areas.
- d) Units in this section MUST NOT exceed 12 feet in width. The length of each unit is restricted by the lot size.
- e) The minimum distance from the front of each unit to the edge of the paved roadway is as follows:
- Zion Ave., 15.5 feet
- Ebenezer Street, east-18.5 feet, west-15.5 feet
- Hebron Street, 24 feet
- f) In all cases each unit must be a minimum of 6.5 feet from the rear of the unit to the lot line between units.
4.4 PARK EQUIPMENT USE
- a) There is a fee for heavy mechanical equipment when used for personal purposes. A fee schedule is available. Only Park employees may operate powered equipment. Due to insurance requirements, no power equipment will be loaned to residents for personal use.
- b) There is no Workers Compensation Insurance coverage on any volunteer working on Park grounds.
Section 5: RV Camping
5.1 The camping area is designed to accommodate temporary guests. A fee is required in full for the time the unit is on the site.
5.2 All campers must register at the Park Office before parking. Those arriving after the Office is closed must follow posted instructions and complete registration as soon as possible.
5.3 Contact the Park Office for reservations. A deposit of $100.00 must be submitted by April 15 to hold a specific space for all campers staying at least 3 months during the next winter season. The deposit may be returned if requested before November 1ST.
Section 6: Guest Rooms and Cabins
6.1 A deposit of $100.00 by April 15th is required to hold a specific unit for the next season. The deposit may be returned if requested before November 1ST.
6.2 No personal items are to be left in the rental properties. If any items, furnishings or otherwise, are placed in and left in a guest room or cabin, they then become property of Light and Life Park and can no longer be considered personal property. The housekeeping staff will determine if items need to be moved, placed in a different room or cabin, or need to be disposed of, or replaced. All rooms/cabins need to be left in rentable condition.
6.3 Monthly rent includes all utilities. Rooms are furnished including one set of linens.
Section 7: Swimming Pool
7.1 The Park does not provide lifeguards.
7.2 The pool is for the use of Park residents, their guests and registered campers.
7.3 For your own safety DO NOT SWIM ALONE.
7.4 Adult supervision is required for all swimmers under the age of 16 years.
7.5 Maximum number allowed in the pool at one time is (48) forty eight people.
7.6 Shower before entering pool.
7.7 No food or glass containers are allowed in pool areas.
7.8 Safe and proper conduct is required at all times. No running or diving.
7.9 The gates to the Pool should be closed at all times. They MUST be locked when no one is in the pool area.
7.10 Open hours are posted at Pool Gate.
7.11 All residents and guests using the pool must be properly attired, no bikinis or thongs. Cover ups should be used when entering and leaving the pool area.
Section 8: Storage
8.1 Recreational vehicles, motor homes, 5th wheels, travel trailers, and utility trailers are to be parked in the designated storage areas.
8.2 The storage areas are for current residents and guests or renters’ use only.
8.3 All units must be kept clean and in working order and have a VALID LICENSE PLATE ON THEM. If not, the owner will be required to remove the unit or update the license immediately.
8.4 Motor homes, 5th wheels, travel trailers, and boat trailers may be parked on your lot, only with permission of the Park Administrator.
8.5 RV’s can be pulled up to resident’s lot, providing there is space, for loading and unloading. The maximum amount of time is 48 hours. They cannot be used for people to stay in.
8.6 Any shed placed on Park property in the area near the golf course must be a manufactured, metal structure and must have approval of the Park Administrator before being placed. Such sheds will be placed in a straight row leaving a 12 ft. wide access lane between the rows.
- a) All new sheds are to be 8 ft. x 10 ft. with a gable roof on the 8 ft. side.
- b) The door is to be on the 8 ft. side, and when placed, the door must face the existing row of sheds.
- c) All new sheds must be tan in color.
8.7 Storage sheds may not be placed on Park property adjacent to a member’s property. They must be within the member’s lot line boundaries.