NATIONAL – From religious discrimination to pointless paint jobs: it’s HOA round-up time

Consumer Affairs:  From religious discrimination to pointless paint jobs: it’s HOA round-up time
By Jennifer Abel
April 25, 2014

We have previously referred tohomeowners’ associations (HOAs) as “government minus the checks and balances,” and hardly a week goes by without an accommodating HOA board somewhere in America doing something to underscore this point.

Remember the Texas HOA whose residents were plagued by a rash of home burglaries, so the HOA responded by forbidding residents to protect themselves by installing burglar bars on their windows? Or the HOA in Vegas that actually went to court (and lost) in its desperate attempt to prevent a family with a disabled son from keeping an ambulance in their driveway? The Florida HOA that fined one of its residents $100 per day because the young sapling trees he’d just planted were “too short?”

Earlier this month, the state legislature of California (which, you might recall, is currently undergoing an historic drought) proposed a bill which, if passed, would prevent HOAs from punishing residents who comply with local water-conservation laws. In other words, if your city says, “Stop watering your lawn; we don’t have enough water for that,” your HOA would have to respect this law rather than tell you, “Go ahead and water your lawn anyway, or else we’ll put a lien on your home.” Read more:

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