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March 2017 Archives

Do you have a valid complaint against your HOA?

If you live in a California neighborhood or community with a homeowner's association (HOA), you may find yourself in a situation at some point in which you are involved in a disagreement with your HOA. Whether it is regarding a tree in your yard or the color of paint on your house, you would be wise to know your rights and know how to effectively handle HOA-homeowner disputes.

The powers of an HOA

California residents who live in a home or condominium governed by a homeowners association may be aware that there are rules that everyone agrees to live by. However, those rules must generally be written if they are to be enforced by the association's board. In many cases the association will have rules banning any type of nuisance behavior. Nuisance behavior is often broadly defined as to encompass any type of action that may interfere with a neighbor's peaceful enjoyment of property.

Social media and homeowners associations

Social media may fuel conflict between California homeowners associations and property owners or between two different property owners who belong to a homeowners association. When this occurs, the fallout can be damaging from both a public relations and legal standpoint. There are a number of issues with social media that make it an inherently bad fit with HOAs because HOAs are tightly regulated where social media is not. The best tactic for HOAs may be to set ground rules regarding social media.

Can my homeowner's association foreclose on my home?

If you have never dealt with a homeowner’s association (HOA), you may not know that they are not the most cordial or amicable organizations; especially when it comes to the application of fees and penalties. Indeed, these assessments are not always fair, and getting them rescinded could involve a very tedious process. Even worse, if they are ignored and go unpaid for a long period of time, they can turn into liens on a property.

Disadvantages of common interest community living

While nearly 66 million people in California and across the U.S. reside in common interest communities such as condominiums, gated subdivisions, vacation timeshares and retirement communities, these types of neighborhoods that are governed by condominium or homeowners' associations may not always be as good as they look. For example, an Idaho HOA demanded that a homeowner take down his Christmas decorations because they were at odds with his non-Christian neighbors' beliefs. Another HOA in Florida auctioned a family's house because the members were behind on paying their association fees.