In the News

Feds Halt HOA Foreclosure Fraud Scheme

A homeowners association foreclosure home-buying scheme has come to an end, after a nearly three-year investigation. Federal authorities seized gold, cash, and other property from a Raleigh, N.C., man accused of fraudulently scooping up homes in foreclosure. He was charged with multiple counts of bank fraud and engaging in monetary transactions involving criminally derived property, among other crimes.

Court Cases Challenge HOA Developer

A pair of state senators expressed their support for residents of a Florida homeowners association at a recent town hall meeting primarily concerned with gaining control of their community.

Homeowners Ask HOA to Show Them the Money

Homeowners in an Alabama community claim they've been paying hundreds of dollars every year but have no idea where the money is going because there are no meetings, no detailed budgets, and no communication from their association. They are blaming the developer.

The head executive of the developer and his daughter sit on the board of directors, which comports with laws governing associations in that area; however, homeowners haven’t spoken with him in a decade. Meanwhile, the board collects about $60,000 in dues annually.

Arizona HOA Bristles at Artificial Turf

Many people are switching from real grass landscapes to artificial turf because of lower water usage and less maintenance. Residents of one Arizona homeowners association who switched to artificial turf cited the climate—specifically scorching sun and temperatures—as making it nearly impossible to grow green, healthy grass year-round; others were concerned about water bills. Homeowners at this association are required to have 50 percent of the front yard and 50 percent of the backyard covered by grass, and two trees, which can use large amounts of water.

Flag Mailbox Puts Spotlight on HOA’s Violation Notification Process

A mailbox decorated like an American flag is causing two kinds of controversy within a Florida homeowners association. The 82-year-old owner of the mailbox—a retired Navy veteran—was upset when the association sent him a letter apprising him that the mailbox violated a covenant and was allegedly reducing property values. The homeowner is gearing up for a fight with the association, which he has accused of bullying him.

Amicus Curiae Brief Aims to Help Protect Associations’ Financial Stability

Virginia-based Community Associations Institute (CAI) has endorsed a new amicus curiae brief supporting community association priority lien rights. CAI, an international authority in community association governance, management, and education, announced that Jaime Fraser Carr, Esq., and Marvin J. Nodiff, attorneys with The Community Association Lawyers in Missouri, filed the first amicus curiae brief on behalf of CAI with the Supreme Court of the United States in the case Bourne Valley Court Trust v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.

Highest Industry Credential Awarded to Community Association Professionals

Community Associations Institute (CAI), the leading authority for community association education, governance, and management, has awarded the most prestigious and respected designation—Professional Community Association Manager (PCAM)—to 86 community association professionals. The PCAM designations were earned between July 1 and Dec. 31, 2016, and the recipients joined the more than 2,800 total managers who have earned the prestigious PCAM designation. For the first time, the PCAM case study was administered outside the United States—in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

Study: HOA Satisfaction Lower Than Expected

The Coalition for Community Housing Policy in the Public Interests most recent national survey has uncovered higher dissatisfaction with associations from their members. A whopping 81 percent of community association residents cited a lack of transparency and poor communication as the top concerns among those who live in planned communities and condominiums.

HOA Bookkeeper Diverted $95K for Personal Use

A Florida homeowners association manager called police after discovering that the community’s bookkeeper allegedly used nearly $95,000 of the association’s money for personal expenses, including a diamond engagement ring and luxury handbags. The employee was arrested for larceny and fraud. The missing money was discovered after the association’s property manager reviewed the association’s credit card bills and saw charges for personal types of products and services.

Class Action Lawsuit Alleges Excessive Charges in Florida Associations

A Miami condominium association is faced with a class-action lawsuit that claims that Sunshine State associations routinely overcharge consumers far more than the legally capped amount. The association member who initiated the lawsuit claimed that he was charged fees that violated the Florida Condominium Act, passed in 1990. The act prohibits more than $100 in fees “in connection with the sale, mortgage, lease, sublease, or other transfer of a unit.” Covered fees include registration, background checks, and move-in costs, among other costs.