Author Archives: Beanie

ARIZONA – HOA orders teen out of grandmother's 55 and over community after both his parents die

ABC ACTION NEWS: HOA orders teen out of grandmother’s 55 and over community after both his parents die

 January 16, 2020

Prescott, Arizona (WPVI) — A story is gaining a lot of reaction in Arizona after a homeowners association forced a family to move because of who was living there.

Melodie Passmore lives in a 55 and over community in Prescott, Arizona where the rules dictate no children are allowed to reside.

When Melodie’s 15-year-old grandson moved in with them, she knew it was a violation, but she was still shocked to get a letter from the HOA ordering him or them to move out.

Her grandson Collin had been tragically orphaned by the sudden death of both of his parents.

The HOA told them it had to balance the interests of all parties not just the Passmores.

Although, after the story went viral, the HOA changed its tune.

They are now saying they are working with the family to resolve the living situation.  Read:

NEVADA- Homeowner beats HOA in fight that went to Nevada Supreme Court

KTNV-13:  Homeowner beats HOA in fight that went to Nevada Supreme Court

By: Darcy Spears

January 13, 2020

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Alongside the American flag and patriotic bunting, a banner unfurls across the roof-line of Jonathan Friedrich’s home.

“Somebody finally has to stand up against these HOAs,” said Friedrich’s attorney Joel Hansen. “He fought hard for what was right. For truth, justice and the American way!”

The banner proclaiming the Rancho Bel Air HOA is guilty of fraud proves Friedrich is not one to shy away from a fight.

Tune in to 13 Action News at 11 p.m. on Jan. 13 for part 2 of the investigation. Darcy Spears’ looks into on the cost of fighting for your rights.

“When you’re right, you’re right!” said Friedrich. “It’s that simple.”In addition to the banner, there are a couple of other new residents in Friedrich’s front yard: large metal birds painted pink. The pink flamingo is an iconic anti-HOA symbol.  Read more:

COLORADO – Aspen couple to get $50K after dog housing lawsuit

Aspen couple to get $50K after dog housing lawsuit 


January 10, 2020

ASPEN |  The U.S. attorney’s office has ordered an Aspen-area homeowner’s association to pay $50,000 to a couple after they violated the Fair Housing Act by failing to allow a woman to stay in the complex with her emotional support dog.

A judge approved a consent order resolving the dispute between Creekside Condominium Homeowner’s Association and Creekside owner Jason Neilson and his partner Kirsten Swick, The Aspen Times reports.

The argument was over whether Swick’s emotional support dog met the association’s criteria for reasonable accommodation against its no-dogs policy, officials said.

The order also requires the association to also participate in Fair Housing Act training and adopt new accommodation and animal assistance policies and guidelines, court officials said.  Read more:

SOUTH CAROLINA – SC homeowners have fallen victim to companies exploiting HOA foreclosure loophole

SC homeowners have fallen victim to companies exploiting HOA foreclosure loophole

By Jessica Holdman 

Jan 3, 2020 

COLUMBIA — His family didn’t know it at the time, but in 2013 John Wynne was suffering from the early stages of dementia. He had always been the one who paid the bills, but he started to miss a payment here and there, his wife, Kay Wynne, said.  One of those bills was for their homeowners association.

The Wynnes said they paid Caroline Springs Homeowners’ Association $1,200 and thought they were caught up. Then a notice showed up posted on their door saying their home had been foreclosed on and sold at auction.  “Everything we have really is in our home,” Kay Wynne said. They were panicked.

A company called State Street Holdings bought their home, worth $165,000, for about $3,100 in December 2014. State Street took ownership of the home, but not the mortgage.  The Wynnes hired an attorney to fight their case in 2015 and the judge overturned the sale, but they learned others in South Carolina had lost their homes for failing to pay HOA fees.

South Carolina does not require including mortgage companies in lawsuits when homeowners associations foreclose over unpaid fees. Most states allow for HOA foreclosures, a process which takes 9 months to a year on average. South Carolina does not, but have some statute governing mortgage foreclosures said Dawn Bauman of the Community Association Institute. This leaves it to the courts’ discretion.

State Street is among a few real estate companies that have taken advantage of this loophole to turn a quick profit over the past decade, Brian Boger, a Columbia attorney who specializes in fighting HOA foreclosures, said.  The buyers of HOA foreclosed homes can make money off their bargain auction purchases by renting the home — either to new tenants or to the existing homeowners — or selling the houses back to the original homeowners for thousands more than the auction price.

These HOA foreclosures happen without the knowledge of the banks, since auction buyers don’t take over the mortgage, said Boger, who has represented a number of homeowners in these cases, including the Wynnes. This leaves now-former homeowners with a tough choice: continue paying for a house they no longer own or stop paying the mortgage and risk having their credit destroyed.

“I get the sense from owners that perhaps they do not fully understand HOA workings and ability to foreclose after they purchase their home,” said Lexington County Master-in-Equity James Spence. “Perhaps greater education in this area would be helpful.”

Legislation has been introduced in the Statehouse for this coming session that would prevent foreclosures by HOAs on homes that are primary residences. And a recent state Supreme Court ruling also could slow the practice by asking judges to consider the amount of equity in a home when determining the fairness of an auction sale price.

“People are losing their homes over less than $1,000,” Boger said.

In the case that reached the state’s high court, Devery and Tina Hale’s $128,000 home of more than 20 years in Irmo was sold for $3,000 at auction over what started as $250 in unpaid HOA fees.  Read more:

COLORADO – Disabled woman fights in court to keep her home after foreclosure sale

THEDENVERCHANNEL.COM:  Disabled woman fights in court to keep her home after foreclosure sale

By Adi Guajardo

December 19, 2019

LOVELAND, Colo. – A disabled woman from Loveland fought in court to keep her home after her homeowner’s association foreclosed on it when her dues payments stopped.

Since Contact7 first reported the story, Damien Bielli, with Windsong HOA, confirmed they reached an agreement with Martha Hummel to repay the two years’ worth of dues she owned. But instead of a closed case in court on Thursday, the attorney for C&C Investments, Craig Stirn, the company that bought the home, argued to uphold the house sale. The company purchased the house for $19,000.

Hummel says her home is worth more than $350,000. “They stole my house from me,” Hummel said.

Hummel says her HOA payments were automatically withdrawn, but they stopped when the management company changed. She says she didn’t realize her payments stopped going through until she received an eviction notice.  Read more:

SOUTH CAROLINA – SC home sold for $3,000 over late $250 HOA fee. Supreme Court calls that 'unconscionable'

The Post and Courier: SC home sold for $3,000 over late $250 HOA fee. Supreme Court calls that ‘unconscionable’

state Supreme Court ruled in homeowners’ favor

By Jessica Holdman

December 18, 2019

COLUMBIA — They didn’t pay $250 in homeowners association fees. For that, one Midlands couple lost their home of 21 years. Unbeknownst to Devery and Tina Hale, their $128,000 house in Irmo was sold at auction for $3,000 in 2014. But Wednesday, the South Carolina Supreme Court ruled in the Hales’ favor, sending their case back to the court that handles foreclosures to decide whether their home was sold for too small a price. Still one justice said the new auction winner “bought it for a pittance.”

“Homeownership is the quintessential American dream. Purchasing a home is the largest investment that most South Carolinians will make,” Chief Justice Donald Beatty wrote in his opinion. “To allow the hard-earned equity to be confiscated by a bidder’s minimal investment is unconscionable. This is especially troubling when the foreclosure sale is the result of an HOA lien.”

In South Carolina, homeowners associations have the legal right to foreclose on members’ homes to collect on delinquent fees. But when the auction price has not met a particular threshold, homeowners have been able to challenge the sale in court.  Read more:

TEXAS – HOA sues retired Texas City couple for up to $100,000 for flower beds that don't meet guidelines

KHOU.COM:  HOA sues retired Texas City couple for up to $100,000 for flower beds that don’t meet guidelines

By Chris Costa
December 7, 2019

TEXAS CITY, Texas — A property owner’s association is suing a retired Texas City couple for thousands of dollars over a dispute about flower beds that did not meet the HOA’s guidelines. Klaas and Dorothy Tadema moved into the Lago Mar neighborhood after their Dickinson home flooded during Hurricane Harvey. The Tademas said they installed flower beds on the property in November 2018. They said they were notified by the HOA in March 2019 that their home improvements did not meet the association’s guidelines, which the HOA calls “covenants.”  Read more:

SOUTH CAROLINA – Myrtle Beach residents face HOA violations for driving vehicles

WMBF NEWS:  Myrtle Beach residents face HOA violations for driving commercial vehicles into neighborhood

By Samantha Kummerer|
 December 5, 2019 at 6:52 PM EST 

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) – A Myrtle Beach resident is facing nearly $1,000 in homeowners’ association fines after getting picked up for work in a commercial vehicle.

Marcos Andrade has lived in the Burcale Commons community for nearly three years and said he was picked up for work every day.

He works with a hardwood floor company and for years the small box truck would pick him up.

“It has letters, but it doesn’t have my company name, it just says ‘Hardwood Floors.’ It doesn’t even have a phone number or something like that, just ‘Hardwood Floors’ and that’s it,” Andrade said.

Occasionally, the truck would stop by during the day to pick up some supplies or cut wood, but he said it never stayed overnight.

Andrade said it’s never been a problem until two months ago when he received a call.

“They call me and say the HOA is going to fine me for $100 if I park my truck over here. I say, ‘I don’t park the truck over here, it just comes to pick me up for work,’” he recalled.  Read more:

TEXAS – Parts of Austin’s short-term rental rules unconstitutional, court finds Parts of Austin’s short-term rental rules unconstitutional, court finds

By Mark D. Wilson

November 27, 2019

A state appeals court on Wednesday struck down two provisions of Austin’s short-term rental policies.The Austin-based 3rd Court of Appeals said city ordinance provisions banning short-term rentals for non-homestead properties and controlling conduct and types of assembly on private property are unconstitutional, as they limit peaceable assembly on private property.

“The ordinance provision banning non-homestead short-term rentals significantly affects property owners’ substantial interests in well-recognized property rights while, on the record before us, serving a minimal, if any, public interest,” the court said.

The Texas Public Policy Foundation’s general counsel, Robert Henneke, called the ruling a sharp rebuke to the city and good news for property rights in Austin.“In striking down the Austin ordinance ban on short-term rental use and the restrictions on guest activities within a private residential setting, the 3rd Court of Appeals stopped the overreach by the city of Austin,” Henneke said. “Noting that the city still has nuisance laws to address actual public disturbances, the opinion highlighted the lack of data from the city justifying any restriction, let alone the manner this ordinance infringes upon fundamental rights.”  Read more:

SOUTH CAROLINA – New S.C. bill could limit HOA power by eliminating foreclosures

WMBF NEWS:  New S.C. bill could limit HOA power by eliminating foreclosures

By Samantha Kummerer

November 25, 2019

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WMBF) – A bill pre-filed this month would prohibit homeowners associations in South Carolina from foreclosing on homes.

HOAs currently have the power to foreclose on a property if fees and fines go unpaid.

If passed, the bill filed by South Carolina representative Todd Rutherford, D-Richland, would strip the associations from this power.

“Real property used as a primary residence may not be sold if the action was instituted by a homeowners association attempting to collect unpaid dues, fee, or fines,” part of the proposed bill stated.

Read the full bill ]

Residents in the Ashford Estate Homeowner Association said they support this law.

“If you take the foreclosure aspect out of the HOA you’re going to alleviate a lot of problems in the state of South Carolina,” said James Hatton.

In November 2017, more than 50 liens were placed on homes in Ashford Estates. Read more: