Living in close proximity in a condo building or sharing amenities year after year in more spread out planned communities can throw together members with different points of view—some of them controversial. The past year has created divisiveness in political conversations and discussions about recent exposes regarding sexual harassment. But some states had reported a rise in hostility and aggressive behavior among community association members even before national events brought up these issues to argue over.
Because the decisions that a board makes very rarely please everyone, you could find yourself having to prevent unacceptable behavior toward board members. A board may have just approved a large special assessment to finance an improvement, and some owners may not be pleased with how the association’s finances are being handled. Most displeased owners may focus their energies on building consensus and replacing current board members.
The draw to residential communities for most owners is that there are rules that keep homes looking nice, and when their neighbors neglect their properties, it can not only conflict with the community’s aesthetic, but also cause damage. For example, an unresolved plumbing leak can cause damage to adjoining units. The good news is that, typically, associations’ governing documents require members to maintain their properties, and authorize the association to compel compliance.
FACTS: A couple filed a fair housing case, alleging discrimination based on familial status at the condominium community where they lived with their two minor children. The couple claimed that the condo association and its management company created an “atmosphere of hostility” against families with children.
Facts: A woman moved into a condominium with her mother, who was handicapped, to help with her daily activities. The woman asked the condominium association to provide an unobstructed path between the member’s front door and driveway.
The decisions that a board makes very rarely please everyone. A board may have just approved a large special assessment to finance the replacement of the roof, and some owners may not be pleased with how the association's finances are being handled. Most displeased owners may focus their energies on building consensus and replacing current board members. But there are some members who will handle their displeasure with the board in completely inappropriate ways.