In the News
Following on the heels of Halloween, the Community Association Institute (CAI) released the findings of a research study that addressed the issues that pop up in planned communities on that holiday. According to the survey, 93 percent of respondents said their association hasn’t made any changes to its community policies regarding Halloween. However, 86 percent of those surveyed report their association doesn’t have special rules for the spooky day, and 83 percent report their community doesn’t have a policy for neighborhood trick-or-treating.
Community Associations Institute (CAI) recommends education and training for the 2.35 million volunteer community association board and committee members nationwide.
A secret settlement between an Orange County homeowner and an association that insisted on traditional lawns in her community has disappointed Sunshine State HOA members who want a legal precedent they can follow. So-called Florida Friendly landscaping, which uses less irrigation and fertilizer than traditional green lawns, has been at the center of legal fights—despite a 2009 state law crafted to protect Floridan aquifer, river, and lake waters from overuse and pollution. The law has been called “weak” by association experts and attorneys.
A San Diego Superior Court ruling has untangled a messy dispute for a California community association, ruling in favor of the association by confirming that the board’s bylaws and covenants, conditions, restrictions, and reservations must be followed for current and future HOA elections.
Although negative or controversial items about homeowners associations tend to make their way into the news more than glowing reviews of planned community living, associations and their managers earned high marks according to recent Community Association Institute polls. The organization’s national survey has revealed that homeowners remain overwhelmingly satisfied with their communities, their homeowner leaders, and professional managers.
Four new Community Associations Institute (CAI) white papers report the findings of a year-long, comprehensive review that explored the future of community associations, professional community management, public policy trends, and external influences that could impact the nation’s almost 340,000 common-interest communities.
Homeowners can be optimistic about taxes, thanks to a measure that would create a new deduction. U.S. Representatives Anna G. Eshoo (D-CA) and Mike Thompson (D-CA) have introduced a measure that would allow homeowners in community associations who earn $115,000 or less in annual income to deduct up to $5,000 of their community association fees and assessments from their federal tax liability.
In Florida, a plane club may be grounded as a battle between a handful of homeowners and a RC plane club in Escambia County continues. The recreational club, which attracts model plane enthusiasts, has been called out as a nuisance by homeowners in a community adjacent to the field where they fly planes. Some people feel conflicted as they understand the homeowners’ concerns but think that the plane club is a local tradition and has been a great source of fun for more than 14 years.
A homeowners association and its developer are waging a battle with each other over which party is responsible for repairing major damage from a sinkhole in the community. Currently, barriers guard the spot where a creek bank eroded in 2015, a year when North Texas saw extreme storms and flooding.
Now, the community’s developer is denying that it should fix the heavily eroded creek bank—even as it gets larger with continued rainfall.
A large cooperative apartment complex in Brooklyn, N.Y., is in hot water following allegations that it refused to allow residents with disabilities to keep emotional support animals—an issue that has come to the forefront recently in national news. The Justice Department took action by filing a fair housing complaint against the 1,144-unit building.