Atlanta HOA fighting over transparency, election

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Another day, another homeowners' association conflict. Today it's Cobblestone Community HOA, Cobb County, Georgia. Blake Kenya has been HOA President for many years. Homeowners are concerned about finances for their Association-Governed residential community. They asked to see copies of financial documents. But, according to homeowners, Kenya has been …

HOA C.U.R.S.E. No. 5: The unfunded budget

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities *C.U.R.S.E. - Consumer Unfriendly Regulatory Statute Example A few weeks ago I wrote an article about Sudden Valley homeowners association in Bellingham, WA. Like many aging HOAs and struggling golf communities in the US, Sudden Valley is showing visible signs of deferred maintenance, reportedly due to many years of …

Lawyers and HOAs

Shared by Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Ward Lucas links to an interesting USA Today article on the lack of access to affordable legal assistance. That's definitely a problem for HOA residents, because there is very little state or federal oversight of Owners' Associations. Virtually every HOA dispute ends with the homeowner giving up, rather …

Rep. Cortes files three HOA bills in FL

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Gearing up for the next Legislative session, Rep. John Cortes has filed three bills affecting Association-Governed Residential Communities in Florida. At this time, there is no sponsor for any of these bills in the FL Senate.   HB 653 would extend limited oversight of homeowners' associations by FL …

A Thanksgiving Reminder

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Normally this blog is about the many, many issues faced by homeowners and other residents of homeowner, condominium, and cooperative associations. Today I want to pause and be thankful that I and many of my readers have a safe place to live, a place to call home. Unfortunately, …

Arizona homeowner warns, “buyer beware”

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Developers and construction companies were able to push through changes to Arizona's statutes involving construction defect disputes. As of July 2015, builders have a right to cure alleged defects as claimed by homeowners. Additionally, the party who prevails in a legal suit can no longer recover legal fees. Homeowners …

FL Condo plagued by construction defects

Shared by Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities During the last real estate boom, it was difficult to find skilled construction workers, and even harder for city inspectors to do a thorough job. The result, not only in Florida, but also in other states - a lot of shoddy construction that slipped through the cracks. Condo …

HOA C.U.R.S.E. #4: FL Condo Law’s Loopholes

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities HOA C.U.R.S.E. = Consumer Unfriendly Regulatory Statute Example I have written about Condo Terminations in Florida and other states before, but today I want to highlight the portions of Florida statute that allow wealthy real estate investment firms and developers to takeover condominium associations and force remaining owners to …

Cities, HOAs Eroding Democratic Principles

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Is democracy disappearing in the US? Recently, the Institute for Justice (IJ) has filed a class action lawsuit against the city of Pagedale, Missouri. In their recent public awareness campaign on social media, IJ has posted the following video, and has written a news release that recently appeared in …

NJ Legislation aims to make HOAs more accountable

Shared by Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Here's a legislative proposal written in reaction to claims for storm damage in June of this year. Apparently, owners of association-governed property had a difficult time getting insurance claims resolved because they could not get information about their association's policies. “Association Homeowners’ Protection Act of 2015″ (S3235) seems …