Don’t be fooled! HOAs are in the punishment business!

Recently, a Colorado judge awarded an HOA some $10,000 in libel damages from a homeowner who was quite forward in her criticisms of her board. The Colorado Gazette reporter quotes the homeowner association president,

“She still has rights as an owner,” [he] said. “It’s a legitimate issue. We’ll consider it, as long as she’s civil and doesn’t call people names. We’re not in the punishment business.” [emphasis added].

Say again????

HOAs are in the punishment business 

1.  When it possesses foreclosure rights that usually exceed US Supreme Court opinion on excessive penalties in insurance damage claims (State Farm v. Campbell, 538 U.S. 408 (2003) ) —  the “it’s not fair for good people to pay for deadbeats” slogan used by proponemts of HOAs and supporting state legislators; 

2.  When it issues, not uncommon, $25-$100/day fines for trivial, alleged violations;

3.  When it denies proper due process ( the ‘standard’ CC&R and statute wording only mentions “an opportunity to be heard”), by failing to include with respect to this so-called hearing, “by an impartial tribunal where the homeowner can present and question witnesses” — the recognized standard for proper due process hearings;

4.  And when it operates with homestead exemption laws that exclude homeowners living in HOAs as a special class of citizen from general exemption laws that apply to all the residents of the state.

No, it is quite clear that HOAs seek to punish as a detriment to other homeowners who may insidiously plan, as it appears HOA board thinking goes, to avoid paying HOA debts.  Never mind any factors beyond the control of the homeowner, like death of the bread-winner, loss of employment, market downturns, personal family financial obligations,   such as unexpected doctor and hosital bills, etc.  HOAs seem to ignore the fact that our society operates with a more compassionate view of  “fairness” .

No, the homeowner must pay no matter what, for as long as he lives in the HOA, because his home is collateral for HOA expenses.

Published in: on November 12, 2007 at 12:43 pm  Leave a Comment  

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