Ahh, HOA’s. You either love ‘em or you hate ‘em. And those who hate ‘em usually have a good reason. Maybe the HOA is on their case about a fence needing repair. Maybe it’s that dues haven’t been paid on time and the HOA is threatening foreclosure (yes, strange as it may seem, most HOA’s have the authority to take your home if you do not pay). Maybe it’s a fine that was imposed because you went on vacation and forgot to have someone cut the grass. No infraction is too small for some HOAs.
I’ve represented homeowners in disputes with their HOAs, and let me tell you, nothing surprises me anymore. Sure, there are some good HOAs out there. But there are also a lot of bad ones, ones that will spare no expense in “ensuring a homeowner’s compliance.” That often means legal action, with the homeowner viewed as easy prey.
It doesn’t have to be that way. Fortunately the laws governing homeowners associations are beginning to change, with more protections built in for homeowners. But a lot more work is left to be done. I will be attending a conference in a couple of weeks where some of these changes will be discussed. I’ll make another blog entry upon my return.
In the meantime, check out Jacquielynn Floyd’s editorial in Dallas Morning News about how living is easy IF you bow to your HOA.