Author Archives: Beanie
A homeowner’s association (abbreviated as HOA) is an organization in a subdivision, planned community, or condominium building that makes and enforces rules for the properties and residents.
Those who purchase property within its jurisdiction automatically become members and are required to pay dues—HOA fees. And while these associations can do a lot of good, some can be very restrictive.
To illustrate how ridiculous, strange, and downright infuriating their regulations can be, Bored Panda compiled some of the worst HOA stories they found online. Here is the link:
Code violations for sign in Flanders dismissed after homeowner adds Bible verse
September 1, 2021
A Flanders woman who was facing code violations for placing a sign on her property was told by a judge she can keep the sign up after she made a few changes.
Susan Tocci put up a sign on her property off Flanders Road a few weeks ago that says, “Save a Life – Do not text & drive.” She says the sign is meant to be a reminder to not drive distracted and it is also a dedication to her sister Barbara and her nephew’s fiancé, who were both killed in separate crashes.
“I want people to stay focused, stay on track, don’t text and drive, don’t drive under the influence, don’t let somebody else’s family feel the pain that our family feels every day,” Tocci says. A local civic association complained about the sign, and Tocci was facing code violations as a result. Read more: https://brooklyn.news12.com/code-violations-for-sign-in-flanders-dismissed-after-homeowner-adds-bible-verse
Arnold residents celebrating change of leadership after HOA ‘ran out of control’
- LAUREN TRAGER
- | POSTED ON JUL 21, 2021
ARNOLD, Mo. (KMOV.com) — A group of local neighbors claim their homeowners association had gone rogue, and was acting more like a dictatorship than a helpful community organization.The neighborhood, located in Arnold, is the kind of place most people would like to raise a family; homes kept neat with respectful neighbors.”I don’t know any neighborhood that you can walk outside your door, call two or three neighbors and by the end, there are ten of you guys, sitting in the driveway, having a beer,” said one resident.All the neighbors News 4 spoke to requested anonymity, but there was one thing many said spoiled it all, and that was the over-reaching of their homeowner’s association.”We are dealing with abuse and selective enforcement. Selective enforcement is something a lot of people are experiencing and it’s not right,” said one resident.A homeowner’s association, and its fees and rules, is meant to protect a neighborhood from one or two bad apples. They are designed to keep property values up by enforcing standards throughout a neighborhood, making things better for everyone. But this large group of neighbors, most of whom didn’t want to be identified for fear of retaliation, contacted News 4 after they said their HOA was becoming more like a runaway train.”You are not some cop that is going around giving tickets, you are here to give us a voice,” said a resident.The neighbors said rules weren’t being enforced equally. One person might get a fine for a basketball hoop, for example, while others did not. One modification to a home might be allowed, another, denied. One man even got fined for his children playing in the street.”I don’t think a two or three member board should ruin our happiness, its not right,” said one neighbor.”[It’s hard] Not knowing if I do something to my yard, or I put up a certain flower, or I do an American flag, or a tree, if they are going to send me a fine,” said another.Fines were coming in frequently in recent months, they say, but only for some.”It can turn into a lien on your house and then can turn into foreclosure,” one resident. “It doesn’t seem right. It doesn’t seem American. It’s not why people move here.” Read more:
ACLU Challenges Subdivision Rules Limiting Freedom of Speech
by Special to the Post |
Feb 24, 2021
Pagoda Daily Post| News/Politics
ACLU of Colorado filed suit this week in federal court to challenge a subdivision’s rules that arbitrarily prohibit residents from displaying certain flags and signs on their own property.
David Pendery, the ACLU’s client, wishes to display a Pride flag at his home to convey solidarity with LGBTQ+ families like his. He also wants to post a “We believe …” sign to encourage inclusivity and kindness. But both signs are prohibited by the rules of the Whispering Pines Metropolitan District #1 (Metro District), where Mr. Pendery lives in Arapahoe County. “Mr. Pendery has a constitutional right to fly a Pride flag and to post a social justice sign on his own property,” said Mark Silverstein, ACLU of Colorado Legal Director. “The Metro District’s rules, which carry the force of law in the Whispering Pines subdivision, violate the First Amendment and the Colorado Constitution’s guarantee of free expression.
”When Mr. Pendery displayed a Pride flag last summer, he received a violation letter from the Metro District, which has the power to impose fines and place liens on the homes of non-complying residents. The Metro District subsequently granted approval for Mr. Pendery’s Pride flag, but specified that this “approval” would expire on December 31, 2020. The Metro District warned that Mr. Pendery was required to re-apply for “approval” if he wished to fly the flag in 2021.
The Metro District’s rules allow certain flags but prohibit others, like Mr. Pendery’s Pride flag, unless and until advance approval is obtained from the Metro District’s Design Review Committee. Similar rules allow signs with certain messages, but other signs, like the “We believe …” sign Mr. Pendery wants to post, are prohibited without advance approval. The Metro District has complete discretion over whether to grant or deny approval. There are no written guidelines to prevent censorship on the basis of the subject or viewpoint that the flag or sign communicates. Read more: ACLU Challenges Subdivision Rules Limiting Freedom of Speech | Pagosa Daily Post News Events & Video for Pagosa Springs Colorado
WFTV.COM – Central Florida couple threatened with foreclosure for debt they didn’t owe
By: Todd Ulrich, WFTV.com
Updated: February 16, 2021 – 4:35 AM
It’s one of the most extreme home owner association nightmares Action 9 has seen.A Central Florida couple claims their homeowner’s association threatened to foreclose on their house for a debt they did not owe. But these homeowners fought to save their home of 26 years, and now the HOA must pay them $33,000.
Action 9 consumer investigator Todd Ulrich reveals how this family turned the tables, and how you can protect yourself. Watch this story Monday at 5 p.m. on Channel 9 Eyewitness News. Read more:
Texas HOA’s: what’s wrong with this picture?
What is it about “freedom-loving” Texans that tolerates the covenants, conditions, and restrictions of Home Owners Associations (HOA’s)?
HOA’s occupy an odd public-private fusion, with some aspects being similar to special districts such as being required to respond to Open Records Requests [Reference 1], while in other ways being regarded private property with the privacy protections accorded [Reference 2].So unless a lawsuit is filed, how can HOA residents determine that their HOA, and more importantly the management company, is actually following the law? What government entity oversees them and, for example, has the power to inspect that they actually counted the ballots in an election properly? Read more:
cbsaustin.com: Cedar Park family distressed after HOA fines turn into lawsuit, possible foreclosure
by Melanie Torre
Monday, November 23rd 2020
Some Central Texas homeowners are facing lawsuits and potential foreclosures brought on by their Home Owners Associations during the pandemic.
“Everybody has their challenges,” says Soc Lindholm. He and his wife, Misty Lindholm, moved to the Highlands at Gann Ranch in Cedar Park 16 years ago. They’ve had their ups and downs with the HOA primarily due to landscaping violations, according to the Lindholms. In June the family received a $1,505 bill for several past-due fines and fees including landscaping violations and trash bins. The violations dated back to last year but were news to them.
“This is the one piece of mail we got,” Misty says showing the bill to the camera while speaking with CBS Austin over Zoom. “Up until then we had paid all of our dues. No emails. No phone calls. No nothing,” she says.
In the days that followed, Misty’s grandmother died and she left town to be with family. Shortly after that the couple started virtual school for their two special needs students. Both she – a breast cancer survivor with an auto immune disorder– and Soc—who has lung damage– were out of work before the pandemic started.
“I know that maybe it seems like that was enough time to take care of that, but for us right now it obviously wasn’t,” Misty explains.
In early November Misty’s dad died from COVID. That was the same week her family was served with a lawsuit from their HOA.
“There’s so much going on that’s so heartbreaking and then we get hit with this,” says Soc. The stress of the lawsuit has caused additional anxiety for the family and health complications for Soc, who according to Misty suffered a vasovagal episode days after CBS Austin first spoke with them.In the days that followed, Misty’s grandmother died and she left town to be with family. Shortly after that the couple started virtual school for their two special needs students. Both she – a breast cancer survivor with an auto immune disorder– and Soc—who has lung damage– were out of work before the pandemic started. Read more:
|Article Courtesy of WKMG Channel 6|
By Adrienne Cutway
Published October 6, 2020
|TITUSVILLE – Over the course of three years, a former homeowners association president stole $20,000 from the community he served and used the money to expand his stamp collection and buy lawn equipment, according to the Titusville Police Department.|
Brett Rowe, 51, was named HOA president of Shady Oaks Pine in 2017 and records show at that time, there was about $21,000 in the HOA’s Bank of America account.
Police said there was about $180 left by the time Rowe left the position and he refused to show other board members receipts to prove where the money had gone.
The new HOA president, who contacted authorities on Sept. 9, said he was able to find proof that Rowe spent $2,000 on medical expenses, made various ATM withdraws, bought $1,000 in stamps for his collection, purchased chain saws and lawn equipment and made purchases at stores and restaurants, according to the affidavit.
Rowe was arrested at his home Thursday on charges of theft over $5,000 and scheming to defraud. Read:
FLORIDA – Residents of a South Florida condo building have a pool problem, and it could take 50 years — yes, 50 years — to fix. Karen Hensel explains in tonight’s 7 Investigates.
The pool at the Maison Grande Condominium on Miami Beach is currently closed for repairs.
|It may even have to be replaced, but once the pool is fixed and filled, the money being sunk into it will not stop because the pool problems here go much deeper.|
Alan DelForn, unit owner: “We’re looking at three generations that are paying for this pool.”
Three generations, or 99 years to be exact.
Part of the monthly maintenance fees for the 502 condo owners here goes to lease their own pool because it’s not actually theirs to begin with and hasn’t been since the building opened in 1971.
Kim Alessi has lived here since 2011.
Kim Alessi, unit owner: “What he did was he sectioned off and kept a portion of the property where the pool was going to be built.”
|In what’s called a recreational lease, the building’s developer retained ownership of the pool and a portion of the deck.|
The condo owners are charged to use it, even when they can’t swim in it.
Kim Alessi: “The pool has been closed since June of 2019, and we still had to pay $75,000 a month for a closed pool that no one can use.” Read more:
PENNSYLVANIA – Civic association head is charged in land theft that rattled South Philly’s Grays Ferry community
Civic association head is charged in land theft that rattled South Philly’s Grays Ferry community
Posted: August 3, 2020
A South Philadelphia man has been arrested on charges that he stole land owned by a neighborhood organization that he helped start decades ago, long before the city’s economic revival made the properties valuable.
Mark Meighan, 60, of Grays Ferry, was charged last week with theft by deception, records tampering, forgery, and other offenses, court filings show.
The Inquirer reported in October that Meighan was said to be under investigation over his handling of seven rowhouse-size parcels on South Dover Street, which he is accused of taking from the Guenther Street Civic Association neighborhood group.
Records show that he had deeded the properties — together worth upward of $300,000, based on other sales in the area — to himself for $1 each in September 2017.
After taking ownership of the parcels, Meighan allegedly continued to collect payments from people who parked at the properties, keeping the cash for himself, according to the warrant for his arrest.
Neighbors told The Inquirer last year that he had also openly discussed selling the properties to a developer or building houses on them himself. Soaring property values in some Philadelphia neighborhoods have made the city an attractive hunting ground for real estate scammers, who in some cases forge deeds to seize ownership of homes and vacant lots they can flip. Read more: