HOA, condo & co-op corruption and fraud roundup (Nov 2018)

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities The November 2018 roundup includes reports of HOA corruption from embezzlement to wire transfer fraud to money laundering. Orange Sheriff’s Office investigating reported $400K embezzlement from Lake of the Woods Association (VA) By Allison Brophy Champion Culpepper Star-Exponent Nov 27, 2018 The Orange County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the …

Texans feel the strain of high property taxes plus condo HOA fees

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities As Texans debate how to rein in high property taxes, many homeowners struggle to keep up with rising condo and HOA fees as well. But several recent articles on the subject of property tax reform fail to acknowledge that the bulk of HOA and condo assessments. Association-governed community fees …

HOA asks City for Thanksgiving street parking ban, homeowners not happy

Cars street parking

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities How would you feel if your city council and police joined forces with your HOA board to create a parking ban on public streets in your neighborhood? Sounds unbelievable, right? But it’s really happening in one Texas association-governed community. NBC Dallas Fort Worth, Channel 5 news reports that the …

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, …

Will homeowners support a new special tax district?

River Place HOA supports establishment of Limited District following annexation to the City of Austin By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   Austin’s recent annexation of the River Place subdivision has temporarily shifted certain maintenance responsibilities from a Municipal Utility District (MUD) to a Limited Improvement District (LD). In River Place, the HOA and LD …

How HOA and non-HOA communities address crime problems & prevention

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   As population density increases in some of the fastest growing real estate markets, crime rates also tend to go up. In many cases, municipal, county, and state governments have not increased the number of trained law enforcement officers to correspond with additional demand for services. The result is …

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 …

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 …

Estate of deceased condo owner suing association after fire

One of the most devastating incidents that can occur in a condominium is a fire, especially if it involves personal injury or loss of life.   By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities When a fire occurs in a condominium association, owners and residents are affected on multiple levels. Initially, for some residents, there is the …

TX: Single mom threatened with HOA foreclosure for removing a tree

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities   A Texas mother of 4, and widow of an Afghanistan Veteran, has been threatened with foreclosure by Stewart Peninsula HOA in Colony, Texas. According to a report from CBSDFW.com, for the past year, Leticia Acevas has been fined $75 per month - a total of more than $5000 …