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 …

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

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?

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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 …

HOA Common interest community real estate trends

Changes coming to HOA, condo neighborhoods The industry keeps trying to tweak the HOA, condo product. But do recent changes improve communities, or simply cause new problems? By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities Six new trends are likely to make homeownership more complicated, and less predictable than ever before. 1. Site Condominiums In Michigan, it …

Federal Housing Authority confirms investigation of Michigan HOA for religious discrimination

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   A federal lawsuit has prompted an investigation of Bay View Association, a seasonal community in Michigan, whose board recently enacted a policy requiring all of its property owners to be practicing Christians, affiliated with a church. See this AP news release: Feds investigate Michigan resort community that requires …

These Texas homeowners don’t want an HOA, but developers are trying to impose one

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   How would you feel if you went out of your way to purchase a home that is NOT governed by a homeowners’ association, only to have an HOA forced upon you a few years later? That’s exactly what may be happening in Key Largo, a subdivision in Converse, …