KXAN.INVESTIGATES: HOA law loophole leaves some homeowners powerless
By Brian Collister
October 30, 2017
AUSTIN (KXAN) — New neighborhoods are popping up across Central Texas at a staggering rate. Many of the new neighborhoods have homeowners associations that offer you amenities and help you preserve your home’s value. However, a KXAN Investigation uncovered there is a loophole in the Texas law that keeps homeowners from having control of their HOA.
Reinna Ortega and her family live in Bradshaw Crossing in south Austin. The mother of two worries her sons, Jonas and Jason, will get hurt when playing in their neighborhood park. “Sometimes when we come to the park and there will be broken bottles or beer tops, condoms,” says Ortega. All of it left over from people hanging out in the park at night when the park is supposed to be closed. Ortega says her husband was attacked earlier this year by a group of teenagers when he told them they couldn’t be there after dark. “As he turns to leave he gets hit on the side of the head with a branch and he goes down.”
Ortega and her neighbors turned to their HOA to ask for lighting to improve safety and to keep out vandals at the park but the HOA did nothing and the park still sits cloaked in darkness as homeowners continue to pay their HOA dues. Robin Callan has lived in another south Austin neighborhood called Colorado Crossing for nearly a decade. Since January 2016 her HOA increased residents’ dues by 33 percent to pay for an unfinished pool and amenity center. “We don’t have ownership of or control the HOA as homeowners in the community. So in a sense, it’s taxation without representation,” explains Callan. Read more: