In this Texas HOA, working class residents feel unwelcome

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities This is another crazy HOA with #StupidRules. According to a report from ABC 13 Eyewitness News, Summerwood HOA in Houston has a rule against parking any work or commercial use vehicles in the driveway of a home. That’s a huge deal for Joey Albritton, a very busy plumber by …

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Decoding HOA industry talking points

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities In the past few weeks, several HOA articles have been circulating on social media that just beg a response. Every one of these articles conveys the usual HOA industry talking points. They've been repeated many times, and in so many ways. After following the industry for more than 6 …

FL Developer ordered to turn over control of HOA to homeowners

Benderson Development Company has controlled Kings Gate HOA for nearly 20 years.   By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) recently ruled that the developer of Kings Gate subdivision, Victoria Estates Ltd. (Declarant), must hand off control of the homeowners' association to members. Victoria Estates Limited is …

Investigative journalists confirm abusive nature of HOAs, common interest communities

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American communities   Nearly eight years ago, when my husband and I purchased and moved into a nearly-new home in a master planned community, we had only a vague understanding of what it means to own and reside in an association-governed common interest community. Like most first-time residents of homeowners, condominium, …

HOA, Condo, Co-op litigation and case law quarterly highlights (March 2018)

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Carl Thompson v. Lamplight Village Homeowners Association, docket number A-14-697688-C. Latest update on Lamplight Village HOA liability for $20 million verdict: Very little information is being released by the HOA to the general public. However, the following letter from attorney Michael W. McKelleb, independent counsel for Lamplight Village …

Political influence of real estate developers: the heart of the HOA beast

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Real estate developers figured out a long time ago how to exert political influence over government officials and housing policy makers, from the local to the federal levels. For the past three years, IAC has provided more than 1,000 posts citing thousands of references to prove a point: …

NC homeowners: many unanswered questions about HOA insurance claims

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Do you have a clear understanding of how your homeowners, condominium, or cooperative association is spending the money collected from you and your neighboring homeowners? For many homeowners, the answer to that question is a definitive NO. For example, according to a Fox 46 (WJZY) report from Charlotte, …

HOA, Condo, & Co-op Legislative Highlights (Feb. 2018, MA,MD, MI, NH)

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities MARYLAND Senate Bill 258 and House Bill 77 (MD) It’s no secret that real estate developers prefer to limit and avoid construction defect warranty claims. In Maryland, some developers add provisions to association governing documents or sales contracts that are intended to get around state law by effectively reducing …

HOA, condo, co-op Legislative highlights (Feb 2018, AZ, IN, KS, WA)

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Arizona HB2540 (AZ) A few weeks ago, State Rep. Kelly Townsend proposed regulation of radar gun usage in Arizona HOAs. The bill proposed that the radar gun be calibrated, and that no fines be issued unless the driver’s speed was at least ten miles over the posted speed …

MI House bill would nullify condo bylaws with respect to membership vote to commence lawsuits

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Should a condo board have sole authority to initiate lawsuits on behalf of co-owners of the association? Specifically, should a condo board be required to obtain a vote of co-owners in the association prior to either: suing a member for covenant violations or commencing litigation against a developer …