Why You Need a Notice to Owner in Florida

We have listed some of the most important reasons why you should file a Notice to Owner in Florida to secure your lien rights.

Ariela Wagner
Ariela Wagner
Sep 13, 2021
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Sep 13, 2021
3 Mins

Lien rights are often lost by subcontractors in Florida because they fail to send their Notice to Owner before the deadline. A Notice to Owner (NTO) is needed to secure your lien and bond rights in the state of Florida and it must be received by the 45th day from when you first furnished labor or materials to the project.

A Notice to Owner in Florida is not required if you have a direct contract with the property owner. The most common mistake subcontractors and suppliers make is mailing their NTOs on the 45th day from first furnishing. Many subcontractors and suppliers have been given inaccurate deadline information and lose their lien rights.

A Notice to Owner needs to be received by the 45th day from first furnishing.

But what does that really mean? You should be aware of the following deadlines and how to count them down:

  1. All required parties that need to receive the Notice to Owner must receive it by the 45th day;
  1. The 45th day excludes the date of first work;  
  1. The 45th day starts on the first calendar day thereafter (this is day 1 of 45);
  1. Includes all weekends and legal holidays counting continuously from day 1 until day 45;
  1. If the 45th day falls on a weekend or legal holiday, you can roll it to the next business day (thereby potentially getting up to 48 days to deliver the NTO).

Why You Should Not Wait Until the Final Hour to Send Your Notice to Owner

Never wait to send your Notice to Owner. Many subcontractors and suppliers send the Notice to Owner only if they haven’t been paid. An NTO Florida should be sent at the beginning of the project informing all parties at the onset that you have furnished labor or materials for improvement to said property.  

Notice to Owner

Many subcontractors and suppliers fear that sending a Notice to Owner can hurt their business relationship with their customer. However, this is a big misconception. You should fill out your Florida Notice to Owner form as quickly as possible.  

Billion-dollar construction companies understand the importance of putting a process in place to secure their lien rights and do not wait until the final hour to send their NTOs. General contractors tend to pay the people that send them a Notice to Owner first.

How Can I Determine My Deadline?

Do you need to know your Notice to Owner deadline? SunRay has developed a user-friendly deadline calculator. You can easily calculate your Notice to Owner deadline by plugging in your job details.

calculate your NTO deadline

What can I do to ensure that I meet my Notice to Owner deadline?

To avoid losing your lien rights, the best business practice is to send your Notice to Owner as soon as you start working on the project. Your Florida NTO is not considered valid unless it is received by the 45th day, which means you must leave time for the NTO to reach not only the owner, but all required recipients.  

To ensure that SunRay’s customers never lose their lien rights, SunRay’s mail department goes to the post office every day and keeps a stamped manifest for proof of mailing. SunRay helps 1000s of Florida subcontractors and suppliers secure their lien rights!

Key Takeaways

  1. Securing your lien rights with a Notice to Owner is crucial to getting paid.  
  2. Don’t wait until the last minute to send your Notice to Owner. Send your NTO as soon as you start working on the project.  
  3. Whether you have a written contract or an oral contract, you want to send your Florida NTO as soon as you start working on the project.  
  4. One of the ways you can make the process easier for you and your company is by filling out a Project Information Sheet for every one of your projects.  
  5. Remember, sending a Notice to Owner does not mean you doubt your customer’s integrity, it’s just good business practice and is ordinarily perceived as such.  
  6. A Florida NTO lets all parties know that you have secured your right to lien in the event of nonpayment.
Contact SunRay Today
Ariela Wagner
Ariela Wagner
Ariela is the president and founder of SunRay Construction Solutions. She has over 13 years of construction industry experience.
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