One year later: Recovery of condos & HOAs after Hurricane Harvey (TX)

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities One year after Hurricane Harvey devastated entire neighborhoods in the Houston area, several association-governed, common interest communities are struggling to recover. A slow, uncertain recovery for The Pines Condominium At the Pines Condominium, ground floor units were flooded with several feet of water contaminated by raw sewage. According to reports, the black water inundated the established condo community for 10 days. Unfortunately, the condo association had no flood insurance. Continue ReadingOne year later: Recovery of condos & HOAs after Hurricane Harvey (TX)

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HOA blames deed restrictions for delays in reconstruction following Hurricane Harvey

Meyerland Community Improvement Association seeks to amend its restrictions. But will that benefit property owners? By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Last autumn, Hurricane Harvey hit homes in Meyerland, Texas, hard. Some properties took on several feet of water, and were damaged beyond repair. (See these photos from the Houston Chronicle to see flooding in Meyerland.) And, according to a report from KHOU11 News, six months have gone by since the 1950s-era homes have Continue ReadingHOA blames deed restrictions for delays in reconstruction following Hurricane Harvey

Cinco Ranch community faces post-Harvey challenge

How to navigate its complex governance hierarchy to address sewer plant failure In the past 20-30 years, local governance for communities has become a complicated hot mess. That is abundantly apparent following devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey in southeast Texas. Cinco Ranch, a Fort Bend County association governed community of 8,700 homes for 12,000 households serves as a troubling case study of unnecessary bureaucracy and poor developement planning. According to a recent investigative report written Continue ReadingCinco Ranch community faces post-Harvey challenge

Timarron Lakes HOA seeks FEMA flood relief, storm drainage improvements

In the aftermath of Harvey, Woodlands Township, Counties, and MUD will each play a role In previous blog posts, I explained that, in general, association governed communities are not eligible for cash assistance from Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for post-disaster clean up and repairs. FEMA does not provide taxpayer funding for mandatory community associations, because, by law and for tax purposes, they are private organizations, not government entities. An exception might be made for Continue ReadingTimarron Lakes HOA seeks FEMA flood relief, storm drainage improvements