Unaccountable developers create big problems for condo, homeowner associations

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Let’s talk about one of the most glaring unintended consequences of enabling real estate developers to control residential communities large and small: no accountability to housing consumers. Allow me to explain. Prior to the 1980s and 1990s, a buyer could purchase a new home from a builder without …

Advertisements

Can less than 20% of your neighbors force you to join a new HOA?

Photo: Morguefile.com free image of an unidentified stormwater retention lake in a subdivision. By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities UPDATED, November 7, 2017 Can your neighbors impose an HOA membership on you, after the fact? In Illinois, Apparently, the answer is YES. The News-Gazette reports the results of Monday’s meeting to vote on whether or not …

Oregon lawsuit pits tenants against condo association, management

Families seeking $1.7 M in damages stemming from mold contamination By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   I have found that small news journals can be a rich source of information and in-depth coverage of local politics, community disputes, and lawsuits that evolve from dysfunction in association-governed housing. The following article from The Register-Guard highlights …

Texas media, Legislators tackle developer control of HOA communities

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   A Texas news station, KXAN, is investigating a very common disadvantage of HOA living - the Developer/Home Builder or “Declarant” controlled community. It’s about time! Current and former owners and residents of homes in association-governed communities have been complaining for many years that they have no vote and …

Is solution on the horizon for Sinking Millennium Tower Condo?

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities     According to a recent report in Business Insider, homeowners are in mediation with developer Millennium Partners and “other parties,” discussing a possible fix to correct a noticeable tilt in San Francisco’s Millennium Tower Condominium. That proposed fix involves driving dozens of structural piles through the tower’s foundation …

When is a flood zone not a flood zone? Riverstone owners sue HOA developer

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Hurricane Harvey recovery efforts continue in southeastern Texas. Now that waters have receded, clean up and damage assessment is well underway. Homeowners and residents wonder what went wrong. Yesterday, I wrote about widespread flooding in Cinco Ranch, which caused failure of a sewage treatment plant. Today's report from KTRK …

Florida HOAs dealing with hardship and damage following Hurricane Irma

Homeowners and residents are picking up the pieces after Irma barreled through the entire state of Florida. Damage is widespread throughout the Sunshine State. By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities After Hurricane Irma: Singer Island condo condemned; people scramble Julius Whigham II Palm Beach Post Staff Writer 6:16 p.m Friday, Sept. 15, 2017 A wall …

Koller Pointe HOA threatens lawsuit against developer

Homeowners frustrated with unfinished public improvements By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Koller Pointe is a 140-unit planned community of new construction single family homes selling for around $350,000. The first custom built homes were sold in 2006. But since the real estate market crashed in 2007-2008, remaining lots have been slow to sell. Bobby Jackson, …

IL condo owner board alleges fraud, failure to disclose construction defects

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities I have said it before, and I will say it again. Modern association-governed communities are created by and for real estate developers and their affiliated investor stakeholders. Not only are the governing documents written to the clear legal and economic advantage of the Declarant, but state laws also enable …

City, home inspectors fail to identify defects in condo and HOA construction

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   If you are in the market for a new or recently renovated home or condo, view the following reports first. Word is beginning to spread across the country, with an epidemic of poor design and shoddy construction, especially prevalent in condominium projects and all types of planned communities …