Thanks to your State Rep, you have no private property rights in a HOA!

I’m Lady Justice. Thank you for listening, I’m always welcome to a healthy debate.

What the heck are HOAs and why have lawmakers given my private property rights to them?

Buying your first home should be one of those landmark, life-changing moments in life. Up there with getting your first real job, getting married and having your first child. It should be something happy and joyous showing how you are now settled in life and moving forward.

Buying a home can be stressful and overwhelming. Doing all the research, what is the best area, the best schools, how much space do we need, what the neighbors are like. So much emotion and energy are put into that very first purchase. Most of the time we are limited in our knowledge of what owning a home means.

It’s an investment, it’s security, it will help you in the future.

Trying to understand the massive of paperwork and the legal jargon entirely is overwhelming enough. You are forced to invest a lot of trust in someone who is usually a stranger, the Realtor. As time goes on more people get involved and more people you have to invest your faith in.

Due to past indiscretions, the home mortgage industry is so heavily regulated that what should be a 30-day process can drag out for months. The process adds to the stress of both the seller and buyer.

WE DID IT!!!!

After withstanding the stress and process of buying your first house, you finally get to the closing table and sign those documents, agree to a loan that’s going to bind you to this property for 15-30 years. No worries, no pressure there. You move in, meet your neighbors. Start asking what the HOA is? It wasn’t fully explained at closing, but you’re supposed to pay them money at the beginning of the year.

So you ask, what are we paying for?

Not a single person in the neighborhood has that answer, they all are asking the same question. So you call the management company. They tell you well that’s for us to maintain the communal property and ensure you comply with the rules and regulations you agreed to.

Wait, I own this house, right?

Do I have rules on what I can do and what I can’t do?

HOAs
Do we really own this?

It seems I do.

Apparently, in America, we have completely stripped the rights of homeowners. If you are unfortunate enough to buy a house that has an HOA, you might as well consider yourself under MOB control. Mobsters that have more power than the federal government, they can foreclose and take your house just because they don’t like you. They can and will harass you if you don’t comply with their demands and orders.

You must follow the Rules, Regulations, and Codes to a tee if you do not, they will come after you as Elliot Ness went after the mob.  What are the fees for?

Absolutely nothing but job creation.

The management company is usually someone hired by the developer or builder. They are tasked with overseeing the operations of the HOA, which the HOA is supposed to be composed of actual homeowners, however, that isn’t the case. A representative is elected in and appointed to speak for the homeowners to the management company. The company is usually based in another state, has never been to your community and has no idea what is going on. They pay someone to go by and make sure you comply, meanwhile they rarely are.

How many people are paying HOA fees for amenities they don’t have? Countless times the homeowners come together and been promised a solution is in their future, but it never happens. How many people have damaged common areas that go unmaintained? Failure by the HOA to uphold their duties lowers your resale value and hinders a sale when a prospective buyer drives into your lively neighborhood and see unmowed areas, broken fences, piles of construction trash, all things that are not the individual homeowner’s responsibility.

How many people have turned to the all mighty HOA to resolve a conflict between neighbors and nothing been done? How many people called the police to help and they said it’s on the HOA?

Why do we have HOAs?

Initially, they were put in place to protect your investments. They made sure everyone in the neighborhood kept their homes up, didn’t do anything outlandish or crazy to the exterior of their homes that may impact the future sale of yours. HOAs were intended to be mediators in domestic issues between neighbors. They made sure that someone didn’t decide to start a used car lot at their house.

As time went on HOAs created play areas for children. Parks and Pools and places that kids could play safely in their neighborhood. Fees went to the upkeep and maintenance of these neighborhoods. However at the time, the laws were put into place protecting the HOAs, it was the homeowners themselves running and managing these organizations.

The actual people that owned the homes got together and voted on things; they elected board members. It was a community effort that was designed to work together making sure that our homes and families were kept safe.

Like all things that involve big money companies have come in to manage HOAs, to take the stress off the homeowners, but they don’t care about you.

HOAs
Enter at your own risk

They don’t care about your home.

They don’t have any personal interest in your community, but somehow they seem to think they are God over you and the law completely protects this corruption. I cannot think of another organization that can demand money for services they have not rendered, refuse to follow their own rules, fail to do anything they are being paid for and still have the ultimate power over you.

If you think this is an exaggeration, then try being behind on your fees.

They can file a lawsuit in court against you; if you do not seek legal counsel, they will likely win. If they win, they can foreclose on your home.

They can force you out of the property you purchased.

Judges hate them, but their hands are tied because the law has given them power. There have been cases where people sued their HOA and had a trial by jury.

They win. The Jury awards them a sum of money.

The HOAs appeal and the Appeal’s Court throw it out because as the law is written they can do whatever they want and they don’t have to do what they are paid to do?

Does any of this make sense? Most of us do our civic duty, and we pay our bills even if we disagree with why. How much longer is this fraud going to go on?

The Common Sense of it All

How many lawmakers gladly accept HOA money then give them your rights?

New homes are popping up all across this country and unless you build your own home 100% of these new homes/communities will be under MOB rule.

When does it stop? When is enough enough? HOA laws affect all of us, and it affects our children.

If they do sue you, they ask personal questions like last ten years of addresses, ten years of work history, criminal history going back ten years, if you have been sued before.

Personal questions that they should not be entitled to ask.

So ask yourself do you own your home? Do you get to decide what you do in your home to the fullest extent? Probably not but you are given the burden and responsibility that comes with owning a home.

Then ask yourself if your state or federal representative sold your private property rights.

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7 Comments

  1. Typo in your title. Shouldn’t that by “private” instead of “provate”?

    1. Great eye! Both the overworked editor and the overpriced editing software missed it! MKC

  2. I am a homeowner in an HOA community. I too have had trouble with minor violations or lawn maintenance. I understand the “keep the houses looking nice for property value purposes.” We used to live in a non-mandatory-HOA community and there were houses that were keeping our property values down in comparison with other nearby subdivisions. In our current HOA, the community elected a board that ousted the management company we had because they weren’t performing well. It is possible to fire them, but you have to be able to convince enough of your neighbors to agree and then convince them to attend the annual meeting and vote. We quite often can’t get enough homeowners to show up to make a quorum. My advice, similar to Federal/State/County/Municipal elections, is to get out and communicate with your neighbors and get them to participate in voting. With an HOA, they don’t even have to be registered to vote as long as they are the owner of the house. They don’t really even have to show up, they can give you a proxy to vote.

    1. I am a homeowner and a member of a HOA. In localities with no deed restrictions or city ordinance that protect your qualify of life, an HOA is the only means of protecting your property values, public nuisances, annoyances, maintenance and building standards of properties in the subdivision. There are many who believe that they can do whatever they chose with their property and careless about the affects it has on their neighbors. Our HOA holds meeting monthly to give homeowners an opportunity to discuss neighborhood issues. The problem are most homeowners purchase property without ever reading deed restrictions before purchasing the property, don’t attend HOA meetings, pay HOA dues or care about what goes in the neighborhood. Homeowners can impact who serves on the Board by getting involved and voting. Yes, we want homeowners to show up, vote in person or give a proxy to the Board indicating their vote at the annual meeting. All meetings are open to homeowners.

      1. That works for HOAs properly established. Some HOAs just decide to contract out to 3rd party management agencies. Once entrenched, they are next to impossible to remove. Even jury trials ordering them out have been overturned on appeal. In Texas, the HOA does not become run by the residents until the developer states that the development is complete (usually all lots sold and built on). Until then the HOA is managed by an agency picked by the developer. There are lend developments that are over a decade old that are still considered “under development.”

        It is one of those things that when they work, they are amazing. But when corrupted, they are a nightmare

        1. Author

          Douglas this is a standard response from someone who sits on a board. The purpose of an HOA isn’t the problem. The exchange of power from the actual home owner themselves to a “management company” is. The laws were implemented to protect the home owners rights but have been manipulated by the management companies to simply take money and collect dues for their job creation while often times doing nothing. Typically board members and their friends follow their own versions of the rules. This isn’t about the people that move in and think because they own a home they don’t have to be respectful of the other neighborhoods. This is about bad management companies being given control over the home owners that they should not have. The home owners in most communities did not hire the management companies, a builder did. So that leaves the people who own the homes with little to say about how the management company operates. Would you pay a lawn man to mow your lawn if he never showed up? Do you pay the trash man if he never picks up your trash? So if your management company fails to comply with the RRC of the HOA, fails to provide services that were promised by the builder when the fees where established, yet you are expected to pay and if you don’t they will retaliate against you. Unless you and your rep are good buddies, than the rules don’t apply to you.

  3. I have lived in several communities with HOAs. The homeowners run it with guidance from a management company.? They protect my property values and negotiated cheaper rates for cable and utilities.

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