HOA-ville news roundup (October 15, 2019)

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities

In this update: Floridian condo residents deal with water damage and mold; Veteran settles flagpole dispute with HOA; homeowners grapple with local government over stormwater management; Canadian woman with disabilities fights battle for automatic doors for her condo building.

Leaky Florida condos – 2 condo horror stories

Condominium buildings are notorious for their vulnerabilities to water intrusion from various causes. Here are two notable examples, all of them affecting Florida condo residents and owners within the past two months.

Dania Beach condominium rooftop pool floods building

First, according to several reports, 250 residents have been displaced from their homes in The Place at Dania Beach. The high-rise condo building boasts a rooftop swimming pool with sweeping views of the city. Sounds impressive, right?

Well, the enchantment of a rooftop pool wears off mighty quickly when a pipe beneath the pool bursts and 10,000 gallons of water starts pouring down into condos below. Upper floors sustained heavy water damage, but, thanks to gravity, water trickled down to the lower floors, too. Repairs could take weeks, forcing residents to stay with friends or in nearby hotels.

Rents for Dania Beach condos start at $1688 for a one-bedroom unit, up to $3688 for a 3-bedroom apartment.


It’s bad’: Dania Beach condo residents displaced after rooftop pool leaks
Franklin White | Sept. 28, 2019

6 months after mold discovered in condominium units, no solution in sight

In May of 2019, IAC posted an article about The Royal Crescent in Winter Haven, where condos are affordable to buy, but certainly not affordable to own.

Several of the condo units show obvious signs of water intrusion, from stained drywall to standing water on the floor. The condo association first had to determine the source of the leaks. Leaky windows and patio doors? Leaky siding? Leaky plumbing? More than one source is likely.

The condo association isn’t offering details, due to pending litigation.

The mold infestation is so bad, that Erica Ray, a resident fighting cancer, has been living in a motel with her children for months. After Ray’s story originally aired on WFTS in May, the condo association reportedly began paying for her temporary housing.

The condo association is still working on Ray’s condo to removed the mold and make repairs. Meanwhile, Polk County code enforcement has received several other complaints against Garrison Property Services, LLC, the management agent for Royal Crescent.

The condo association has considered dissolution in the past. But now it appears they’re moving forward with mold remediation and repairs, which could take 4 to 6 months to complete.


Polk County condo closed off for mold infestation, homeowners say more repairs are needed
Posted: 4:55 PM, Aug 09, 2019
Updated: 6:22 PM, Aug 09, 2019
By: Andrea Lyon | WFTS

New Jersey

HOA reconsiders its denial of flag pole requested by Vietnam veteran

Several months after it denied 72-year-old Mike Burtt permission to install a flagpole in his front yard, Equestra at Colts Neck Crossing HOA decided to allow one after all.

The homeowner and his HOA were headed to court, when the Association decided on a compromise in an out-of-court settlement. Burtt can now install a non-permanent flagpole, which will allow him to fly the American flag at half staff to honor fallen Veterans.

Earlier this year, the HOA denied Burtt’s application to install the flagpole, even though he submitted a petition signed by 164 homeowners along with his request. The board had instructed Burtt to submit a petition with at least 120 signatures, but then inexplicably denied his request.


Howell Vietnam vet allowed to keep flagpole that HOA initially denied
Joe Strupp, Asbury Park Press Published 12:48 p.m. ET Oct. 11, 2019 | Updated 2:35 p.m. ET Oct. 11, 2019



Town would like to take over HOA’s detention pond

Select Board members of Camden seem to be heeding the advice of Planning and Development Director Jeremy Martin. Martin advises the town board to consider taking over ownership and maintenance of a stormwater detention pond in the Pleasant Ridge development.

The pond sits near the mouth of the Megunticook River.

Martin explains that homeowners associations (HOAs) rarely keep up with maintenance on stormwater infrastructure, because they don’t know what to do, and don’t anticipate the high costs of doing the job right.

That can lead to contamination of nearby watershed areas, and possible flooding.

The town plans to open discussions with Pleasant Ridge HOA about the detention pond.


Acquisition of subdivision lot with water detention pond considered
Susan Mustapich, Knox Village Soup | October 9, 2019
(Camden, Maine)


North Carolina

Homeowners say stormwater from road project is destroying their property

Homeowners blame North Carolina Department of Transportation for diverting a torrent of stormwater onto their properties, flooding their back yards.

NCDOT isn’t admitting fault — at least not yet. Instead, they point the Pointer Place Neighborhood Homeowners Association to fix drainage issues in the community.

But homeowners Doug Moxley and Shelly Alexander say they shouldn’t have to pay for expensive repairs to their properties.

Moxley already attempted to divert storm water, by installing an open drainage ditch in his yard, at a cost of $3,000. The unsightly ditch cuts his back yard in half, but, unfortunately, it isn’t working to prevent flood damage.

Alexander says the rushing waters have damaged her fence. Her lawn is always waterlogged, and there’s so much moisture infiltrating the crawl space her front door, that mushrooms are sprouting up inside her home.

Both homeowners fear they could lose their homes unless either NCDOT or the HOA takes responsibility for correcting the problem.


Some homeowners in High Point blaming drainage issues, flooding on nearby NCDOT project
Some High Point residents are blaming a North Carolina Department of Transportation road widening project for drainage issues and the subsequent flood damage on their property.
Updated: 6:12 PM EDT Oct 4, 2019
Steve King, WXII 12


Calgary, Canada

Condo association refuses to install automatic door for Quadriplegic resident

Unlike the U.S., the majority of Provinces in Canada lack robust housing accommodation laws for people with disabilities.

Verna Marzo resides in a condominium building in Calgary. Up until two years ago, Marzo was an active young adult, fond of outdoor activities. But a sepsis infection following emergency abdominal surgery changed her life forever.

The post-operative infection left Marzo in critical condition. As her major organs shut down, doctors amputated her arms and legs to save her life. Now Marzo uses a wheelchair wherever she goes.

Several months ago, she found herself locked out of her condo building for two hours, unable to open the door due to her disabilities. Marzo requested that her condo association install an automatic door, so she can easily access her home.

But her condo association denied the accommodation, and Provincial laws don’t require housing providers to install accessible entry doors.

That makes Marzo feel like a prisoner in her own home.


If there’s a fire, I’m dead’: Quadruple amputee battles condo board for access to her own building
Governments need to ‘get with the program,’ fix building codes and laws, advocate says
Rosa Marchitelli · CBC News · Posted: Oct 13, 2019 6:00 PM MT | Last Updated: October 14

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