FLORIDA – Action 9 helps local family get their home back after HOA foreclosure
They lost their home after failing to pay just $1,900 in association fees.
The couple’s attorney had filed a motion to vacate the sale as a long shot.
But after Action 9’s story aired, the HOA and the new buyers offered to settle outside the courtroom.
“It’s not right, it’s disgusting, it’s not right,” said Katelyn Annis.
Two days after our story aired there was a dramatic turnaround for Annis and her family.
The investors who bought their Port Orange home at the HOA foreclosure auction is now willing to sell it back to them for $15,000.
It’s a costly penalty for failing to pay just $1,900 in association fees. But far better than being evicted and losing $100,000 in equity since they had owned the home outright.
“We just want to make things right,” said Annis. She and her husband lost jobs and say that’s why HOA fees weren’t paid and they never realized an association could foreclose to collect.
Consumer advocates say an HOA legally can but that doesn’t mean they always should.
“To foreclose on small amounts is pretty ridiculous. It costs the association thousands of dollars.” Attorney Barbara Stage has represented many HOA’s and says foreclosure should be a last resort and association boards should consider payment plans early on. “There is a better way, I mean work with the homeowner,” said Stage.
Annis told Action 9 her association never offered a payment plan. But she also admits there were two legal notices the couple should have responded to sooner and that won’t ever happen again.
“That’s where we made the mistake,” said Annis.
Their losses with legal fees, will come close to $20,000. Some say that punishment fits the violation far better than foreclosure and a $100,000 loss. Read: