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If we abolish HOA fines, how can homeowners protect property values?

Homeowner volunteers faces smiling

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Yesterday I reposted one of my previous articles, which sparked a spirited discussion  of abolishing the power of HOAs to fine their neighbors. Today’s post takes the discussion to the next level. In case you missed it, here’s the link: Here’s why HOA statutory power to fine must be …

Is an “affordable” home or condo a good investment?

Real estate investment homeownership handshake

by Deborah Goonan, Independent American Community Two hot topics in real estate these days are the current housing affordability crisis and real estate’s investment potential — or lack of it. There’s no sugar-coating the truth. The U.S. real estate market has changed dramatically in the wake of a financial meltdown ten years ago. And today’s …

Lawsuit: HabiJax, City shift blame for problems at Fairway Oaks

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Two years after Fairway Oaks HOA filed a lawsuit against the City of Jacksonville and HabiJax, there's still no relief in sight for homeowners. In yet another move to dismiss the lawsuit, the City blames several other parties for current conditions at the affordable housing complex. Those other parties …

Millennium Tower condo HOA submits $100M repair plan to City

Google satellite image of Millennium Tower San Francisco

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Millennium Tower Association and Mission Street Development have reportedly agreed to a plan to correct a noticeable lean on San Francisco's now-infamous condominium building. The $100 million, 18-month long construction plan would drive 52 concrete piles 250 into the ground to bedrock. Dubbed the 'Perimeter Pile Upgrade,' all of …

PA Act 84 legislation regulates homeowners not HOAs

Pennsylvania PA state seal

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Quietly, and with little fanfare, Pennsylvania Legislature enacted new legislation, PA ACT 84, which becomes effective Dec 2018. The amended laws will regulate homeowners, not their HOAs. On October 19, 2018, Governor Tom Wolf approved HB 1499. The bill is now officially recorded as PA Act 84, amendments to Chapter 68, …

Time to improve fire safety for condo residents

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities With multiple households living in close proximity, fire safety is more important than ever. But for more than a decade, the real estate industry has delayed action to improve fire safety for condo residents. Here it is, just halfway through the month of December, with  a half dozen reports …

Leisure World MD owners seek democratic elections

Democracy must begin at home

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Activist group Just Us ( www.justus.group ) continues its fight for democratic election procedures in Leisure World Community Corporation (LWCC). The long-running dispute, spearheaded by Just Us President, Sheryl Katzman, fights for the right of LW owners and mutual share holders to directly elect members of the sprawling community’s umbrella/master association …

Privacy not guaranteed to HOA residents

Private Investigator PI magnifying glass faces

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities How much privacy are you willing to give up, in exchange for better security or more open access to HOA records? It’s an important question facing millions of residents of association-governed common interest communities. Today’s posts includes several important points for concerned homeowners and residents to consider. HOAs fighting …

Condo, HOA boards stuck with big problems, no help

Problems and solutions sign blackboard

Some IAC readers are HOA board members with the best of intentions for their communities. But they lack impartial guidance and support following a crisis. By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities I know some IAC readers are current or former members of their homeowners, condo, or co-op association boards. And many of them have the …

FL homeowner says HOA should respect her religious freedom

Catholic Virgin Mary Lady Guadalupe

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Community Millie Francis, a homeowner in Bradenton Tropical Palm, says she isn’t going to take down a painting of Our Lady of Guadalupe (also known as the Virgin Mary) that adorns her mobile home, despite her HOA’s objections. The property manager of the trailer park, Janet Nowakowski of Vanguard Property …