River City Condo deconversion breeds lawsuits

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities A few weeks ago, a group of unit owners at River City Condominium in Chicago filed a lawsuit intended to halt the $90.5 million sale and condo deconversion of their iconic vintage Chicago riverfront building. River City Condominium Association includes 449 residential units. Since 2016, Marc Realty along with …

Charlestown IN eminent domain lawsuit update, implications for HOA residents?

Balance of power scales of justice with people

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities City of Charlestown officials are attempting to downplay an Appellate Court ruling in favor of the Pleasant Ridge Neighborhood Association Corporation. Since 2014, Charlestown Mayor Bob Hall has been making grand plans for redevelopment of Pleasant Ridge, a neighborhood of small homes, most of them owned or leased by …

Homeownership in HOA-ville: is there any real benefit?

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities This week, Shu Bartholomew and I sort out half-truths and illusions surrounding homeownership in the U.S. Do restrictive covenants and homeowners’ associations really protect property values? Are consumers of new homes getting a safe, high quality product? Who truly benefits from the current housing policy? Listen in on the …

Homeowners avoid forced HOA to pay for new dam at Ivy Lake (VA)

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Two years ago, Liberty University filed a lawsuit, in an attempt to convince the courts that 400 homeowners with properties near Ivy Lake should be forced to form a homeowners’ association to pay for $1 million in repairs to a dam. The HOA, if approved, would have transferred …

HOAs, condos, & co-ops: Quasi-governments or ‘contractual communities’?

HOA homes sidewalk

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   In 2012, California Attorney Tyler Berding published an article on his website, Condo Issues, making his case that an association governed community is purely ‘contractual.’ In Berding’s opinion, ‘community associations’ are not governments, because, in theory, members voluntarily agree to CC&Rs and Bylaws for the good of the …

It’s time to deregulate homeowners and restore private property rights

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Legislative sessions are winding down across the U.S. And some states, once again, considered bills that are intended to rein in abuse and corruption of a virtually unregulated industry: association-governed, common interest communities, more commonly known as homeowners’ associations or HOAs. As explained in a previous post Recipe for …

MI: Bay View Association members vote to revoke rule requiring owners to be Christians

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Good news! It appears that a federal lawsuit against Bay View Association, filed by current homeowners and potential home buyers, has generated enough public pressure to convince the association’s membership to vote to eliminate the requirement that all homeowners must be practicing Christians, actively affiliated with a church. …

It’s time to deregulate homeowners and restore private property rights

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Legislative sessions are in full swing across the U.S. And some states are, once again, considering bills that are intended to rein in abuse and corruption of a virtually unregulated industry: association-governed, common interest communities, more commonly known as homeowners’ associations or HOAs. As explained in a previous …

Proof positive that HOA priority lien does more harm than good

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities KTNV’s Darcy Spears, founder of the HOA Hall of Shame, recently investigated an outrageous case of a homeowner’s association that foreclosed on a half-million dollar property for a measly $30,000. Las Vegas woman's home goes to auction before short sale completed due to delinquent HOA dues Darcy Spears 4:23 …

Is the tide turning with respect to private property rights of HOA residents?

usa-sign-welcome-America

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities This Independence Day, IAC reflects upon recent events that indicate that the courts and real estate developers are rethinking the management industry’s decades-old attempt at restricting property rights by way of restrictive covenants. Residents of property governed by homeowners’ associations are increasingly challenging the HOA’s rights to enforce restrictive …