HOA Syndrome survey: YES, it exists!

The CBS TV Phoenix affiliate, KPHO reporter asked in its HOA Syndrome coverage, What could someone do to escape the HOA Syndrome? The only answer provided as to “move out”.

That was a completely unsatisfactory solution! In a hearing on HOA reform bills in this past session, a legislator stated that 94% of all new homes was in an HOA. A completely unsound solution not based on the facts.

Furthermore, it rewards the guilty parties. The government was not called upon to do something to stop this disgraceful condition in what the government continues to tout as “the next best thing to Mom’s apple pie.” There was no call for the immediate adoption of a consumer advisory like a Truth in HOAs Disclosure Agreement. There was no call for ADRE, the real estate department, to enforce its rule on material disclosure, R4-28-1101. There was no call for the Legislature to enforce HOA laws and to hold the HOA accountable under the laws, so homeowners can feel that there was someone on their side. That there was a viable method to ease the pain. KPHO offered no such call except to “move out.”

HOA SYndrome survey

KPHO’s internet survey, “Question of the Day,” asking whether the Syndrome does really exist has received, after 24 hours, a steady 67% YES replies from respondents. Perhaps this will be an awakening call that the legitimate grievances of homeowner rights advocates over the years are valid! And the only reply from the national pro-HOA trade lobbying group, CAI was a faint, “But, it’s not officially recognized.” Not even a word that something has to be done to make its claims of happiness and harmony a reality. Not a word!

As I wrote about not moving to Arizona, “You are on your own!”

New HOA billboard warning — health hazard

HOA  Syndrome

Billboard sign Dr. Gary Solomon has put up on Boulder Highway, NV


Dr. Solomon has diagnosed symptoms of stress from living in an HOA.  See Psychologist defines the HOA Syndrome caused by oppressive HOAs,

Hear discussion of HOA Syndrome on OnTheCommons talk radio

Hear discussion of HOA Syndrome on OnTheCommons talk radio

I congratulate Shu Bartholomew, Host and Producer, and Dr. Gary Solomon on this week’s internet radio segment on the Real Living in HOAs.  A must hear segment!

Dr. Solomon has diagnosed a condition found among many residents living in an HOA — the HOA Syndrome. 


FL attorney ridicules HOA Syndrome and homeowner sufferings

Shame on Ryan Poliakoff, a Florida attorney, and HOA activist and supporter.
He ridicules the suffering, and emotional and physical stress caused by unconscionable CC&R adhesion contracts, defended by the Poliakoffs and other CAI attorneys, and supported by pro-HOA statutes.  (Photo from Poliakoff article).

“So, let’s get this straight.  A kooky psychology professor famous for “cinematherapy,” a chiropractor and a politically-aware anti-HOA lawyer walk into a bar…

“In any event, if any of the maladies in the links above seem familiar to you, maybe you too are suffering from the dreaded HOA Syndrome.  I recommend you call your doctor.  But don’t get upset with me if she can’t stop laughing.  Maybe this post should be under comedy, after all.”

Note the failure to address statements made before various state legislative committees, among them Arizona, California, Texas and Florida’s own Rep. Robaina Hearings.  He should also read the comments to my Commentary,   
Psychologist defines the HOA Syndrome caused by oppressive HOAs

Shame on Poliakoff and those legislators who also see no evil, hear no evil and speak no evil — those who are active participants in the Unspoken Alliance of No negatives About HOAs.

Shame on Ryan Poliakoff!   He should be disbarred!

HOA Syndrome reaction: you knew what you were getting into

Professor Gary Solomon held his seminar describing a collection of physical and emotional disorders collective named, the HOA Syndrome.i In the Las Vegas FOX5 News coverage of the eventii, Solomon said “dealing with a homeowners association is enough to cause physical and emotional harm, including stress, anger, fear and paranoia.” He added, “Harass the neighbors enough, keep them in line and set them up with fine after fine after fine.”

It may be a surprie to some, but this is not new stuff. Viewing these same symptoms from a legal standpoint, Donie Vanitizian, JD, wrote about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in her 2002 book, Villa Appalling!iii Part II of this 519 page book is devoted to these issues and the causes of these issues. Examples include:

“Toxic Turmoil – “Because there is no viable means for homeowners to express their frustrations with the conditions under which they are forced to live, they are plagued with acute stress. . . . With no government agency interested in their plight or the problems created by these developments in general, homeowners are left to their own devices.” (p. 225).

 Vanitizian goes on to say that, Homeowners very foolishly trust that board members automatically have a ‘conscience.’ They don’t. Homeowners blindly look to the association as a ‘figurehead’ that somehow oversees that justice and truth prevail. It doesn’t.” (p. 233).

As expected, denials came from association managers who are at the heart of the HOA Syndrome, as HOA boards defer the operation of the HOA to these persons. In a statement by one manager, speaking about the homeowners, we see the truth of the matter when the manager states, “Homeowners shouldn’t complain because they knew what they were buying into. You know what the expectations are.”  This a frank admission of the oppression and intimidation caused by HOAs that produce anxiety, fear, emotional stress, and the obvious loss of one’s home and financial conditions. Does this person really believe that Americans are demented and masochistic, relishing injuries to be inflicted upon them? And freely, openly, and willing accept these conditions while giving their home as collateral to the survival of the HOA, and forgoing any semblance of due process protections for the greater glory of the HOA? Really!

I ask this manager and all managers, especially those trained by the national HOA “educator” Community Associations Institute, CAI, “How come you by this falsehood?” This attitude reflects a “You’re damn right we consider the harsh, unjust strict enforcement of arbitrary rules as the way of life in an HOA.” Most of these so-called professionals do not understand the origins and intentions of the profit-seeking individuals who created this legal scheme, where these authoritarian and draconian methods were necessary for the survival of this new, untried approach to housing in 1964. And is still carried forward today where state legislators see no evils with authoritarian, private governments protected by state legislation — no enforcement by means of penalties for HOA board violations, but the homeowner can lose everything — and operating outside constitutional protections. The HOA, for some unstated government interest, must survive and the Constitution can be denied when necessary!

So, what do HOA boards and managers have to fear if they are unethical, violate state laws, and are grossly unjust and arbitrary in their dealings with their members? A slap on the wrist, maybe, if the homeowner is principled enough to spend his time and money just to get the HOA to do what it’s supposed to do. Apparently, our government doesn’t think that the compliance by private government HOAs with their statutory and contractual obligations is not a matter of general public concern. Apparently, they, too, believe in a masochistic and demented American population who cherish living under such conditions and need no protections.

Welcome to the New America of HOA-Lands.iv


 i  See “Psychologist defines the HOA Syndrome caused by oppressive HOAs”, HOA Constitutional Government, October 7, 2010.

ii  See “Professor: Homeowners Get Ill From HOAs”, Fox5 News, Las Vegas, October 1, 2010.

iii  Villa Appalling! – Destroying the Myth of Affordable Community Living, Donie Vanitizian and Stephen Glassman (Villa Appalling Publishing, Inc 2002).

iv  See Understanding the New America of HOA-Land, George K. Staropoli (StarMan Publishing 2010).