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Old 07-13-2017, 07:16 AM   #1
jmvar
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Default Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

We searched for a house for months and had given up and decided to wait a couple of years to save up more money for our expensive area. Out of the blue we found an affordable house with almost everything we wanted on our wishlist. In a rush to get our house on the market during the hot selling months of the summer we put about $15k into our current home (still not sold). This was all work I had planned to do myself over the next year but due to our tight timeline to get our house on the market we hired the work out.

We went through the loan approval, offer, negotiation, inspection process, more negotiation, contract signing, processes under the idea that the neighborhood had no HOA as listed by the seller's agent.

Now we are due to close on July 31st and all of a sudden we are told there is an HOA. I just received the Covenant and Restrictions doc and there is an architectural committee that can deny any changes for any number of vague reasons. Additionally, the house has a very nice 24'x32' detached garage (has a single garage door). These are the exact words from the document:

Prohibited Structures
No structure other than a detached dwelling, a private garage or carport (designed for use by not more than (2) automobiles), a swimming pool, patios, walkways, customary household television antenna, and fences and such other structures as may be appurtenant to said specified structures, shall be erected, placed, or maintained on any Lot, without the express written authorization of the Architectural Committee, which shall not be unreasonably withheld.

My concerns:
- of course #1 is the garage, it's large enough to where someone could say it can fit more than 2 cars despite the single door. It sits barely visible behind a nice 6 ft. fence (also probably not approved by the Architectural Committee) but I am still nervous some busybody can come at any point in the future and tell us to tear it all down.

- We want to make future external changes to the house. Change in siding (color and material, cheap vinyl to something nicer), completely new entrance with front door, enclose an outside mudroom in the front of the house, put in a bay window. In our opinion these changes would improve the neighborhood and would be in "aesthetic harmony with structures existing on the other areas of the property and in conformity with the overall development scheme of the property" but that is all so vague that it could get denied for any reason.

My confusion:
- who screwed up here? My thought is that it is the seller's agent
- why are there tear down and complete new builds in the neighborhood? These in no way match the current style of houses in the neighborhood.
- what should I do next? Ask sellers to confirm that the garage is legit with the HOA? They did not build the garage, it was built by the original owner with permits from the county
- run?

My thought is to have a local real estate lawyer read through the HOA documents and explain my risk in the situation of the garage and fence and have the current owner foot the bill. Am I being unreasonable?
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Old 07-13-2017, 07:21 AM   #2
chris142
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

If you included no hoa in your request then tbe realiter screwed up. Me personally would not even consider a house with a hoa.
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Old 07-13-2017, 07:22 AM   #3
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Contact the HOA itself and ask all your questions via email, get answers in writing. If the answers are what you want to hear that you are good to go (IMO)

I live in a very nice upscale neighborhood with a ferociously strict HOA and never had an issue with any upgrades on my house. They are there more to tell you to not put your trash out ahead of time, or cut your grass, or blah blah blah.

They love me cause I bought the crappy house on the block and fixed it up haha.
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Old 07-13-2017, 07:28 AM   #4
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Much of HOA law depends on your state. The real answers will come from a local real estate attorney, but I would rather find a different house than start off by paying one to unravel all of this.

Can the existing owner provide proof of HOA approval of the existing garage? That is the only question, not if they would approve it retro-actively. If they can't prove the HOA allowed it, then you are correct the HOA could decide at any point to crack down on all the neighborhood rebels and their unapproved garages. There are cases where people have lost their homes because of an unapproved flag pole, this is nothing to take lightly.

You didn't screw up, the HOA is a required notice in the sellers disclosure statement and their realtor is an idiot.

Unless this was my absolute dream home, I would walk.
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Old 07-13-2017, 07:36 AM   #5
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I agree with chris142. If none of the documents you signed mentioned the HOA, or specifically stated no HOA, then you can get out of the contract. Even if you have no proof they failed to mention the HOA they can't force you to come to closing. You might loose your earnest money, but that would be better than having someone else manage your home.

Closest I've come to a HOA was a small neighborhood where the two builders represented the "neighborhood committee". We all just ignored them & when all the lots were sold they went away.

Look into the "HOA" closely to see how active it is & opt out if possible. Otherwise, pass on the house, their still building them.
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Old 07-13-2017, 07:37 AM   #6
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I would walk away. No chance i'd move into a neighborhood with an HOA.
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Old 07-13-2017, 07:49 AM   #7
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I'm in Australia .. I find this HOA stuff is an impost on your own personal space. We have "covenants" in some developments which are totally irrelevant .. The house owners tell the developers to F off . I feel you .. ie .. all american people should stand up against this sort of people control. Its ridiculous and contradicts your right to live "free" .
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Old 07-13-2017, 07:54 AM   #8
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I'm with ChaseDE, and live in an extremely tight HoA. Typically the "Board of Directors" and "Architectural Committees" are other homeowners in the neighborhood. As long as your requests are reasonable, and your request is in writing...there should be no issues.

The goals of HoA:
- No wild paint colors
- Clean siding/roof
- Cut grass
- Trash cans in/out on-time
- No cars on jackstands in driveways visible from thoroughfare
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Old 07-13-2017, 07:57 AM   #9
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Like said above, the agent made a mistake and you should ask all of these questions to the current HOA before you purchase the property. If they have written approval of all the stuff you mentioned you should be fine but , an HOA is like a babysitter I wouldn't want watching my every move and improvement around the house.

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Old 07-13-2017, 07:59 AM   #10
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I'd leave it. And demand any money put down to be returned.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:00 AM   #11
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Also, keep in mind, any HOA can vote to change the rules at any time. So for example they could fine you $100 a day anytime you keep your garage door up for longer than it takes to drive a car in or out. Or prohibit any form of hobby work in your garage as a part of noise abatement. Etc.

People who participate in Garage Journal are likely never going to get along with an HOA, why put yourself through all that?
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:03 AM   #12
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Is the HOA active? As others have said find out, then you'll know if this is an issue or not.

That being said, even if it is inactive, it could be reinstated.

Our current home was built in 1978. The original owners of the land that the houses were built on were the HOA. They've all died.. there is nobody left to enforce the rules.

In many cases HOA's are paper tigers. A lot of rules that aren't followed and the HOA doesn't have the cahones to fight violators.. or perhaps the money to fight them in court.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:06 AM   #13
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

The document says
Designed to.
It in no way prohibits how many cars you park in it.
It doesn't say it. It doesn't allude to it. It doesn't say anything g but design.

The rest is up to you.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:08 AM   #14
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Quote:
Originally Posted by alexb2000 View Post
Also, keep in mind, any HOA can vote to change the rules at any time. So for example they could fine you $100 a day anytime you keep your garage door up for longer than it takes to drive a car in or out.
I believe that, but that is crazy to me, as stated I live in a deed restricted and well policed HOA neighborhood and leave my garage open at least 5 hours a day lol.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:08 AM   #15
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Originally Posted by idriveahonda View Post
I'm with ChaseDE, and live in an extremely tight HoA. Typically the "Board of Directors" and "Architectural Committees" are other homeowners in the neighborhood. As long as your requests are reasonable, and your request is in writing...there should be no issues.

The goals of HoA:
- No wild paint colors
- Clean siding/roof
- Cut grass
- Trash cans in/out on-time
- No cars on jackstands in driveways visible from thoroughfare
I agree as well, a HOA is not necessarily a bad thing. I don't have a HOA where I live, but at times I wish I did. I do know several people who live in an area where they have a HOA and none of them are upset that they live there. In fact, where they live is a much nicer area and I tend to think their homes are worth more because of it.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:09 AM   #16
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

^^^^^^^^^. As for post 7
Covenants and HOA rules are often the same thing in the US. Property can also have zoning restrictions by some or all the govt like city, village, county or state.

The fact the OP potenial property already has buildings on it makes it pretty sure there is not an current issue of them being a problem. A few quick checks can confirm if the HOA is still in tact and operational. Often older properties the HOA is still on the books or docs but not functioning. If it is not functioning and restarts all current structures are grandfathered in compliance.

Also some HOA are just crazy and should be avoided .............while others just limit structures like pole barns on a small suburban lot that are just plain ugly. Or stop a red neck from moving three old semi trailers or old school buses in for storage on that same suburban lot.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:10 AM   #17
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I would walk away. The HOA could be nice and accommodating today, but you have no idea who will be voted in later...
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:20 AM   #18
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Oh hell no!

There's nothing more petty than having a rulemaking organization tell you when you can take out your trash and what color to paint your house. Its great for training compliant humans, but not much else.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:21 AM   #19
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Whether you asked about it or not, I would think this would fall under failure to disclose by the realtor.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:34 AM   #20
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I think everyone has a bad taste about HoA's regarding "freedom" and "it's my house I'll do what I like".

That is fine, don't buy a house in an HoA.

People who do buy in an HoA do so, so that they don't have to worry about their neighbors forgetting to do "regular maintenance" to their home. One bad house on a row of nice houses...makes the entire row look bad.

If my neighbor is thirty feet from me, I don't want them painting their house bright pink, or leaving their 88 Cutlass on jackstands and having the front yard filled with trash and childrens toys.

Let's be real, if we all had neighbors like the members on here...we wouldn't need an HoA. Fact is, people suck...and without an HoA many times...would let their house go to crap.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:35 AM   #21
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Quote:
Originally Posted by alexb2000 View Post
Unless this was my absolute dream home, I would walk.
man... I agree with alexb.

Although this could possibly be leverage to renegotiate the contract and get the house cheaper...
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:37 AM   #22
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Lots of great responses, and difficult choices for us to make. The house is very close to being our dream home, it will be our dream home once we make the changes we want to make.

The HOA is active, my realtor emailed them and they replied back very quickly. They say the membership fee is voluntary but the lawyer I am working with tells me the rules are absolutely enforceable. The membership fee is $50 per year.

The plan of action is to require the sellers to get an estoppel certificate from the HOA stating that:

1. There are no dues or assessments current due from the seller(s) or assessed against the property through the date of closing.
2. That the HOA has either a) approved all changes to structures or installations as they presently exist on the property or b) waived compliance with the HOA covenant for all such structures/installations as of closing.

I will be speaking to my lawyer tonight to see what my risks are assuming all goes well with the estoppel certificate.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:42 AM   #23
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Having rented townhomes and single family homes in HOA's for over 15 years, I made sure to buy a house this spring without an HOA.

I get it, when they work, they work well. When the HOA gets taken over by Mrs. Nosey empty nester, shit starts to go down and quick. Never mind that fact that your PAYING the HOA for this! WTF.

Absolutely beyond me why anyone would allow such control over your own residence FOREVER.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:42 AM   #24
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I would wonder what else the realtor failed to disclose.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:54 AM   #25
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Originally Posted by eddieK View Post
I would walk away. The HOA could be nice and accommodating today, but you have no idea who will be voted in later...
Bingo. And then add in if you have a managing company for the HOA as well. So now you have board and a managing company to deal with. I regret buying my condo 7 years ago as the HOA rates have almost doubled since then, and the BOD are a bunch of idiots. And the kicker is now the President of the board (her husband is a member also) are pushing to set a percentage limit on how many units can be rentals, yet they dont live at their property and rent theirs out

Im glad we bought a house and moved out of the condo, but still owning it, I have an uphill battle to fight to keep it rentable.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:54 AM   #26
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I have lived with two HOAs. One of their sole purpose was to maintain the private road. No architectural committees, no other rules other than a minimum of 1200 SF and no manufactured housing. The other has responsibility to maintain the lake, the gate, and the roads and common areas. Again nothing to do with your private property. We did get them to raise the minimum house size from 800 SF to 1500 SF at the last meeting. This is an old lake and a lot of the cabins will likely be torn down and replaced in a few years. Our main home has no HOA, just deed restrictions. They are generally followed but not policed. All of the homes are nice and well maintained, and virtually all have a detached shop. I generally say no HOAs, but I really mean no architectural committees (what do they know anyway) and no arbitrary day to day rules about grass, trash cans, etc.

See what the rules say about changing the rules. One of my HOAs tried to change the rules and I refused to sign it. They eventually withdrew it.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:56 AM   #27
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmvar View Post
I am still nervous some busybody can come at any point in the future and tell us to tear it all down.
They can try, but won't get anywhere. The time for them to have objected to it was during or shortly after construction. I wouldn't be concerned about that. It's even possible that it was built before the HOA formed in which case it was grandfathered in. If they haven't done anything about it yet, they aren't going to and would be laughed out of court if they tried.


Quote:
but that is all so vague that it could get denied for any reason.
You should go around and interview neighbors. Make sure they're neighbors who are not on the HOA board. Ask them how much of a pain in the ass the HOA is. A lot of HOAs are fine - they write the rules tight so that when the meth head moves in and starts building cook sheds out of pallets he stole from Home Depot they have an air tight case to make him stop.

HOAs get a bad rap because a few of them are run by little dictators who like messing with people, and someone in the neighborhood tells the internet about it, but the majority of them are not like that.

And even the ones that are tend to be chickenshit about it. If you go to them asking for permission to do something they'll put you through the wringer because they think it's fun. If you just build it they'll say nothing because they're afraid of confrontation and know that they're on shaky legal ground if their charter isn't written air-tight, which most of them aren't.

Quote:
- who screwed up here? My thought is that it is the seller's agent
HOA should have been in the listing, especially if it collects dues (some do in order to maintain community property like wells and snow plowing).

Quote:
My thought is to have a local real estate lawyer read through the HOA documents and explain my risk in the situation of the garage and fence and have the current owner foot the bill. Am I being unreasonable?
I think so, yes. You can certainly have a lawyer look at it if it makes you feel better, but expecting him to pay for it is out of line. You don't buy a used car and expect the seller to pay for the pre-purchase inspection either.

I personally am a fan of well-run HOAs. The alternative is that your neighbor might turn his property into a junk yard, and I know that the prevailing attitude is "let people do what they want with their own property," but when it comes time for me to sell mine, if the 13 rusty cars growing weeds in your front yard get in the way of my sale, I'm not going to be happy.

The trick is that you need to attend the HOA meetings, be active, and if necessary get yourself on the board. A lot of abusive HOAs get away with it because no one pays any attention to what they're doing until it's too late.
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:14 AM   #28
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

HOA's are good to have in a neighborhood. They keep things orderly and prevent people from trashing the neighborhood. I have multiple properties in HOA communities and I am director of one HOA.

A $50 per year fee is very low which indicates this is not a very involved association. Still, they have rules and regulations which can be enforced. You need to understand what involvement they have in your community.

First, draft an email to the president of the HOA explaining you are considering buying this house. Ask your questions in a short direct format. This is a volunteer position and the president doesn't have time to read your two page long letter of questions. Explain you are new to HOA living and want to understand certain aspects of the rules. Provide examples and ask if this is allowed.

I would delay closing until this issue is cleared away.

Some people here state HOA's are horrible and would never live in one. The feeling works both ways. I would not want to live next to some of the people who write on this board.
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:17 AM   #29
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

HA! $50 a year is great, ours runs about $280 a year but they are really good about just about everything. Snow removal is super fast, all the common areas and parks are always landscaped, roads are county property and maintained by DOT but the HOA will HOUND THEM until potholes get fixed, new signs, paint, street lights fixed fast, etc. They also pay to have green-lawn or whoever come and spray fertilizer on everyone's yards at the beginning of the season one time each year....er I think that is what it is....haha
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:27 AM   #30
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Hell mine is $600 per year, and there are absolutely ZERO amenities...NONE.
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:35 AM   #31
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Hell mine is $600 per year, and there are absolutely ZERO amenities...NONE.
Mines $300 per month, and all we get is water, but it is a condo building so there is exterior maintenance and roof. $300 is still to damn much for that but Im in the process of trying to get on their financial planning committee and working my way in from there
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:37 AM   #32
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Hell mine is $600 per year, and there are absolutely ZERO amenities...NONE.
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Originally Posted by ThatSickRip View Post
Mines $300 per month, and all we get is water, but it is a condo building so there is exterior maintenance and roof. $300 is still to damn much for that but Im in the process of trying to get on their financial planning committee and working my way in from there

Good lawd thats-alotta-money. Where you guys live? the Hamptons?
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:38 AM   #33
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Originally Posted by NUTTSGT View Post
Whether you asked about it or not, I would think this would fall under failure to disclose by the realtor.
^^^^
My thoughts as well.

I'd be getting out of any signed contract. And getting any Ernest money refunded.

Time for a new real estate agent as well



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Old 07-13-2017, 09:44 AM   #34
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Mines $300 per month, and all we get is water, but it is a condo building so there is exterior maintenance and roof. $300 is still to damn much for that but Im in the process of trying to get on their financial planning committee and working my way in from there
Condo's are different.

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Good lawd thats-alotta-money. Where you guys live? the Hamptons?
VB, VA

Gotta get to the meetings and bluntly ask "what am I getting for all this money, because I don't see it".
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:50 AM   #35
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Just throwing this out there, but the BDK killer, I forgot his name, was a big HOA guy, always going around measuring grass and shit like that. Just saying
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Old 07-13-2017, 10:02 AM   #36
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

There's a lot of truth in most of these posts. You can get your earnest money back, that shouldn't be a problem once you tell the listing agent about their mistake and how it was a fundamental decision in purchasing the house. Then it's between the seller and listing agent if the sellers get the same amount to keep. It will will likely be covered by the listing agents insurance. Depending on state, the listing agent might have to appear before the state licensing board.

But the earnest money can't make you whole again, as you sold your house in order to purchase this one and are now homeless. Take the listing agent to court, you'll likely be compensated for not being whole.

If you're concerned about the HOA at all...walk. You'll grumble about it for the rest of your time there.
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Old 07-13-2017, 10:25 AM   #37
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Real estate listings are notoriously wrong, inaccurate, incomplete, etc. They claim they are so busy and they have an assistant or intern working on these mundane admin tasks. Well..they're important.
We looked at a house a few years ago that was clearly listed as having a heat pump. In reality, it had gas heat and a separate air conditioning unit. It didn't matter to me because that's actually what I preferred, but who knows how many potential buyers they fended off because someone said "my house MUST have gas heat."

HOAs are not a bad thing for several reason, many already mentioned here. Yes, I think it's stupid to get a nastygram beacuse my trash can sat on the street for an extra day, but I also don't want to look at my neighbor's trash can setting on the street all week.

Subdivisions (and their cooresponding HOAs) can be established anywhere. If I own 10 acres, I might decide I want to sell off five 1 acre lots. You can bet your butt I'm going to set up an HOA to have some control over who moves in next door to me and around me. In fact, we bought into a subdivision about 15 years ago that was exactly the case. We didn't know until we came to closing that it was in an HOA. There were about 5 lots. Once we saw the covenants, we were quite satisfied with them. House colors had to be muted, but color changes did not require approval. Couldn't remove more than 50% of trees over a certain size. Any auxllary structures had to meet the overall design and appearance of the main dwelling. It was all stuff like that.

My advice -look at the covenants and see if you can live with them. get something in writing from the HOA that grants approval (either a record of approval or a retro-active approval) of the garage.
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Old 07-13-2017, 10:25 AM   #38
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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There's a lot of truth in most of these posts. You can get your earnest money back, that shouldn't be a problem once you tell the listing agent about their mistake and how it was a fundamental decision in purchasing the house. Then it's between the seller and listing agent if the sellers get the same amount to keep. It will will likely be covered by the listing agents insurance. Depending on state, the listing agent might have to appear before the state licensing board.

But the earnest money can't make you whole again, as you sold your house in order to purchase this one and are now homeless. Take the listing agent to court, you'll likely be compensated for not being whole.

If you're concerned about the HOA at all...walk. You'll grumble about it for the rest of your time there.
He said his house hasn't sold yet.
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Old 07-13-2017, 10:44 AM   #39
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

7/13/17, 08:37 AM #22
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Originally Posted by jmvar View Post
Lots of great responses, and difficult choices for us to make. The house is very close to being our dream home, it will be our dream home once we make the changes we want to make.

The HOA is active, my realtor emailed them and they replied back very quickly. They say the membership fee is voluntary but the lawyer I am working with tells me the rules are absolutely enforceable. The membership fee is $50 per year.

The plan of action is to require the sellers to get an estoppel certificate from the HOA stating that:

1. There are no dues or assessments current due from the seller(s) or assessed against the property through the date of closing.

2. That the HOA has either a) approved all changes to structures or installations as they presently exist on the property or b) waived compliance with the HOA covenant for all such structures/installations as of closing.

I will be speaking to my lawyer tonight to see what my risks are assuming all goes well with the estoppel certificate.
Good luck moving forward, Now would be the time to inquire as to your future exterior upgrades as well.
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Old 07-13-2017, 11:06 AM   #40
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Hmmm.

I've lived in a rural, high end subdivision for 23years with CC&Rs and an HOA. The HOA is active, I am the president. So let me give you some advice.

If it is in the C&Rs it CAN be used against you.

Reading the OPs first post, the section on ACC approval is VERY lenient- it states a bunch of stuff you can bud WITHOUT explicit ACC approval. It appears that only if you EXCEED THE DESCRIBED CONSTRUCTION ALLOOWANCES you must then get ACC approval.

To protect yourself you MUST get a clearance letter from the HOA. "All structures on Lot XYZ are approved and there are no CC&R violations as of [date]". Alternatively, the current owners could indemnify you. (This would mean they agree to accept financial responsibility if there are violations.). This latter would never happen.

Edit: if they did get an ACC approval for the current garage, just get a copy of that letter.

The real bind is if the HOA is basically defunct, and not really operational...this can be very dangerous. Why? Becuase stuff may have been sliding by, no real approvals- then someone decides to reconstitute the Board, start throwing their weight around, and next thing you know, stuff that was fine for years is on the chopping block. Yes, in a legal challenge youi might win, but that might be many tens of thousands of dollars later.

So, OP- you need to find out if there is a function HOA and you MUST interact with them (or your realtor and the current owner must).... Your need to know that that current garage is either (a) approved as a secondary structure, or (b) considered a "2 car garage" under the CC7R allowance. DO NOT TAKE ANYONES WORD ON THIS- not the realtor, not the current owner- this must be from the HOA.

If there isn't a functioning HOA, it is more of a challenge. You should get a legal opinion- demand that the two realtors pay for YOUR attorney our their cut- they F'd this up- and it should not be their buddy either.

I am a big believer in a reasonable HOA. Many are not.
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Old 07-13-2017, 11:33 AM   #41
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Oh hell no!

There's nothing more petty than having a rulemaking organization tell you when you can take out your trash and what color to paint your house. Its great for training compliant humans, but not much else.
Amen, I keep very clean yard house etc. No way I'm paying somebody to police my yard etc. I live near a small town in the country. I won't live in a subdivision where the neighbors house is 20 ft away and they can smell me fart In my yard. My one neighbor is family and the rest of our land is rented to a farmer. The corn is a good neighbor the beans are too. Plus were helping feed America To the OP I would drop it and go futrther.

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Old 07-13-2017, 11:42 AM   #42
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I'm fortunate to live in a nice community with no HOA. All zoning and architectural compliance is handled by the township, as it should be. My cousin lives in a townhouse community where the HOA does not allow him to have a BBQ grill on his back deck. F that. I'm happy, I can grill.
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Old 07-13-2017, 11:43 AM   #43
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

If I were in the OP's position and encountered this revelation, I would think:

1. Why are the sellers selling the house in the first place? Maybe because they're tired of living with a bad HOA?
2. Why was the HOA not disclosed from the start? Maybe it's a bad HOA and they're trying to pull a fast one so you don't find out it's a bad HOA until after you bought the house.

I mean the realtors should have figured this out from day one. It's not like they're trying to figure out if George Washington actually stayed overnight in the house on his way to Valley Forge.
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Old 07-13-2017, 11:52 AM   #44
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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I think everyone has a bad taste about HoA's regarding "freedom" and "it's my house I'll do what I like".

That is fine, don't buy a house in an HoA.

People who do buy in an HoA do so, so that they don't have to worry about their neighbors forgetting to do "regular maintenance" to their home. One bad house on a row of nice houses...makes the entire row look bad.

If my neighbor is thirty feet from me, I don't want them painting their house bright pink, or leaving their 88 Cutlass on jackstands and having the front yard filled with trash and childrens toys.

Let's be real, if we all had neighbors like the members on here...we wouldn't need an HoA. Fact is, people suck...and without an HoA many times...would let their house go to crap.
If we all had neighbors like the members on here, we'd all need a HOA.
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Old 07-13-2017, 11:52 AM   #45
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Run away, don't close - cancel the listing on your existing house so you don't get caught with no where to live.
Also, go after your agent or the agent that didn't disclose the HOA & / or his broker.
They carry errors and omissions insurance - figure out what this has cost you and put in a claim.

HOA= you never own it, they just let you use it as long as you pay them. Don't pay= forclosure

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Old 07-13-2017, 11:53 AM   #46
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

The two times I have been under the thumb of an HOA were a nightmare. I would comb the paperwork for any reference of one or a lack of one.
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Old 07-13-2017, 11:54 AM   #47
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Personally I would walk away. Our primary residence has no HOA. Our winter house in FL does have an HOA. I don't mind it there because they mow the lawn, do landscaping and maintain our pool. Being a part time home, I am not there to do or coordinate the work most of the year. I don't do stuff in the garage there, either. At home, I don't want a bunch of neighborhood busy bodies bitching at me about everything I do.
If you really want the house, delay closing until you get written documentation from the HOA that the outbuilding and whatever you want to do will be permitted. If they won't do it, walk away.
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Old 07-13-2017, 11:55 AM   #48
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

You not only should walk away, you might want to consider filing a lawsuit against the seller (or the real estate agency if you can prove they listed it wrong intentionally) for intentionally misrepresenting the house as "no HOA" on the disclosure statement and thus incurring loss of time & legal cost damages. Your attorney, mortgage company, title company, inspector and agent all should have found it out LONG before the closing...

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Old 07-13-2017, 12:02 PM   #49
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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If you included no hoa in your request then tbe realiter screwed up. Me personally would not even consider a house with a hoa.

Ditto and that's a deal breaker....... I'd walk over that mistake (I call BS) that was known from the get go...

Only an idiot would live in a home they pay for, and have their life regulated by an HOA.

They are never ending bullshit with a smile.

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Old 07-13-2017, 12:04 PM   #50
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

No HOA for me. I'd rather be free to make my own choices without seeking committee approval, and deal with the possibility of a neighbor making a poor decision if need be.


Oh, and fire your agent for not figuring this out earlier.

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Old 07-13-2017, 12:21 PM   #51
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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No HOA for me. I'd rather be free to make my own choices without seeking committee approval and deal with the possibility of a neighbor making a poor decision if need be.
Like my neighbor who moved a "mother-in-law" trailer onto his 12 acre property; 10' from my 6-acre property line...right outside my kitchen window. (he wanted her to have " privacy", so he put it 1000' from his house... she died within a year, 20 years later the trailer is still there- quintessential white trash rental. ...took me almost two years to sell that house, took a huge loss on it.

I moved from there into an HOA governed community; 4 moves later all have been into HOA's. I ended up serving on the Board of one for 6 years, pretty eye-opening. If people would maintain their property and care about the effects of their actions on their neighbors, there would be no need for an HOA.

Reading a lot of posts here on the GJ reinforces my decision to live in a community with reasonable restrictions. I remember one post from a GJ'er bragging about how no HOA meant he could have 4 broken down cars in his driveway and 3 in the front yard. I'll take a well-run HOA over that anytime.

YMMV.
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Old 07-13-2017, 12:25 PM   #52
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Having lived in an older part of town for 10 years (house built in 1952), I looked in areas for my new home that did have some regulations on purpose. You can't even buy a new home in Las Vegas anymore in any sort of housing tract that does not have some form of governing body. I got tired of the dirt front yards and my neighbors parking in their front yards. I remodeled my house over the years and had the nicest house in my block when I sold it. When I agreed to purchase my new house I read through all the rules very carefully first. I had no issues that I couldn't work with and after 15 years here am now finishing my new 1200 sq. ft garage addition that they approved. It matches the design and style of my house and does not look out of place at all. I only gave them details of the outside structure since anything inside is not their concern. I am over the 1 year build they approved but they have not had an issue. It will be completed soon. None of my neighbors have had any issue either. The association had a few picky issues at first but has calmed down a lot over the years. I work on cars a lot but inside and I really like the fact that I don't have to live next to a junk yard.
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Old 07-13-2017, 12:27 PM   #53
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

We're definitely beating this to death, but another point is that there are law firms all over the country taking over HOA management rights from HOA boards that are sick of listening to all the complainers. Why? Because they can push you around all they want, fine you, take you to court, and in some states TAKE YOUR HOUSE. Search HOA foreclosures.

This example was a famous local cases where a couple had a $315K house they owned free and clear. He was deployed to Iraq. The HOA foreclosed because the wife was in a deep depression and so she didn't pay the ~$1K HOA bill. They lost the house which sold at auction for ~$3K. No court was able to get their house back, it's gone.

https://www.dallasnews.com/news/fris...of-Frisco-5503
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Old 07-13-2017, 12:37 PM   #54
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

An "HOA" is not like a "RFT"...it isnt 'one thing' and it isnt always 'good' or 'bad'. People that kneejerk, based on ONLY their experiences- good and bad- dont really help.



OP- when this kind of thing happens- at closing everyone discovers there is an HOA and CC&Rs- it is almost always due to the title company doing a search and discovering there is a recorded set of CC&Rs (or a recording that notes there ARE CC&Rs, but no docs). The HOA has been defunct, the current owners never interacted with an HOA, nobody knew it was technically around. Realtors dont just spring this in the end if they can help it.

One fact: HOAs increase property value. Yes, you trade the right to 'let your unfettered flag fly"...but it protects the 99% from the 1% (when done right). Without an HOA, when a neighbor makes a 'poor decision' and decides to put in a backyard pig farm, and the county says "thats their right"- enjoy!




PS 3 weeks ago I received a call from a good friend, a realtor- He said "Do you know anyone that lives in XYZ? Im selling a home, its in escrow- and we just found out there is an HOA and CC&RS. Im trying to find a copy of the CC&Rs" So dont assume the late notice is some master evil plan....
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Old 07-13-2017, 12:45 PM   #55
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Like my neighbor who moved a "mother-in-law" trailer onto his 12 acre property; 10' from my 6-acre property line...right outside my kitchen window. (he wanted her to have " privacy", so he put it 1000' from his house... she died within a year, 20 years later the trailer is still there- quintessential white trash rental. ...took me almost two years to sell that house, took a huge loss on it.
Pine tree's grow pretty tall in 20 years and make for good view blocks.
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Old 07-13-2017, 12:51 PM   #56
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I'm thinking the OP just can't pull his house off the market as I'm sure he had to sign a contract with the realtor. And if it was stated.....hopefully in a contract of some how provable ....that the OP did not want a HOA then maybe he can walk away....or see an atty.
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Old 07-13-2017, 01:18 PM   #57
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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I'm fortunate to live in a nice community with no HOA. All zoning and architectural compliance is handled by the township, as it should be. My cousin lives in a townhouse community where the HOA does not allow him to have a BBQ grill on his back deck. F that. I'm happy, I can grill.
That's because dumbass people burn down apartments and condos that way.
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Old 07-13-2017, 01:20 PM   #58
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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...
The plan of action is to require the sellers to get an estoppel certificate from the HOA stating that:

1. There are no dues or assessments current due from the seller(s) or assessed against the property through the date of closing.
2. That the HOA has either a) approved all changes to structures or installations as they presently exist on the property or b) waived compliance with the HOA covenant for all such structures/installations as of closing.

I will be speaking to my lawyer tonight to see what my risks are assuming all goes well with the estoppel certificate.
This sounds like the right course of action, the burden is on the seller/seller's agent.

You'll have to read up if your plans about future changes will comply. If they will, then you may be okay.

Of course you should become HOA president ASAP.
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Old 07-13-2017, 01:21 PM   #59
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Thanks for all the input. I will provide some more details and where we are.

When we started to look for a home I was not hung up on the requirement of no HOA. I knew it would be easier to get the garage I wanted without an HOA and we just happened to find this house that supposedly had no HOA.

The HOA seems to be active in that they put together community events and keep up the public areas (very few). From what I can tell, the Architectural Review Committee is not very active, there are houses in the neighborhood that definitely need a coat of paint, yard cleaned up, and general maintenance. There are also several houses that have been torn down completely and new houses built on the lot that don't match the other houses on the street. I say on the street because there are several different areas of the neighborhood that the style of house is completely different. Some ranches, some split level, some colonials. Very confusing.

When we found this house we made sure permits were pulled for the garage and we just assumed we were in the clear when we saw the permits were finaled. Now that we found that there is an HOA everything is in question per the Covenant document. Nice 6' fence completely enclosing nice back yard, driveway that goes back to the yard, and garage. If the property were to loose all of this, we would never even look at it.

If we can get the HOA to provide documentation that the house as it sits is legit, we can live with submitting proposed changes in the future. I think that the changes we want to make are positive to any rational person. Worst case scenario, we have to wait for the 3 year term limit on the ARC members that for some reason won't approve the changes.

Now the challenge is, will the ARC approve the current structure as it sits if the changes were never applied for? The house is very well taken care of, has great curb appeal, and has nothing your would ever call an eye sore, even the garage matches the house.

At this point there is nothing we can do. It is up to the sellers to get the HOA to approve the property as it sits. If they won't do it, or it doesn't get approved we walk away from the sale and go after whom ever our lawyer deems responsible for the incorrect disclosure of the HOA situation.
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Old 07-13-2017, 01:30 PM   #60
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Like my neighbor who moved a "mother-in-law" trailer onto his 12 acre property; 10' from my 6-acre property line...right outside my kitchen window. (he wanted her to have " privacy", so he put it 1000' from his house... she died within a year, 20 years later the trailer is still there- quintessential white trash rental. ...took me almost two years to sell that house, took a huge loss on it.
20 years? I would've lit the trailer on fire before then.
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Old 07-13-2017, 01:34 PM   #61
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Originally Posted by jmvar View Post

The plan of action is to require the sellers to get an estoppel certificate from the HOA stating that:

1. There are no dues or assessments current due from the seller(s) or assessed against the property through the date of closing.
2. That the HOA has either a) approved all changes to structures or installations as they presently exist on the property or b) waived compliance with the HOA covenant for all such structures/installations as of closing.

I will be speaking to my lawyer tonight to see what my risks are assuming all goes well with the estoppel certificate.
Missed this. Sounds good

There is a third option, or maybe this is in 2 as a (c) option: 'The garage as built is considered a 'two car garage', and pursuant to the CC&Rs does not require ACC approval.'

Note this is different that waiving the HOA covenant.

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Old 07-13-2017, 01:41 PM   #62
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When we found this house we made sure permits were pulled for the garage and we just assumed we were in the clear when we saw the permits were finaled. Now that we found that there is an HOA everything is in question per the Covenant document. Nice 6' fence completely enclosing nice back yard, driveway that goes back to the yard, and garage. If the property were to loose all of this, we would never even look at it.

If we can get the HOA to provide documentation that the house as it sits is legit, we can live with submitting proposed changes in the future. I think that the changes we want to make are positive to any rational person. Worst case scenario, we have to wait for the 3 year term limit on the ARC members that for some reason won't approve the changes.

Now the challenge is, will the ARC approve the current structure as it sits if the changes were never applied for? The house is very well taken care of, has great curb appeal, and has nothing your would ever call an eye sore, even the garage matches the house.

At this point there is nothing we can do. It is up to the sellers to get the HOA to approve the property as it sits. If they won't do it, or it doesn't get approved we walk away from the sale and go after whom ever our lawyer deems responsible for the incorrect disclosure of the HOA situation.
Your CC&Rs seem odd in that they only require ACC approval for items BEYOND what they outline in their text-

Because of that, stuff can be built without ACC approval. Garages (notably only 2 car) and pools and fences and gazebos can likewise be built without approval.

Quote:
Prohibited Structures
No structure [B]other than a detached dwelling, a private garage or carport (designed for use by not more than (2) automobiles), a swimming pool, patios, walkways, customary household television antenna, and fences and such other structures as may be appurtenant to said specified structures[/B], shall be erected, placed, or maintained on any Lot, without the express written authorization of the Architectural Committee, which shall not be unreasonably withheld.
Thats my read, what does your atty say?

That final statement, about 'unreasonably withheld' very greatly weakens the HOA too. If they got pissy about the garage, and you could show it is no different than others, it would be hard for them to deny

You dont give your state, which makes advice tricky. Although I am happy to give advice as IANAL.
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Old 07-13-2017, 01:55 PM   #63
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I live in a HOA neighbirhood and I still wouldn't want to have me as a neighbor.
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Old 07-13-2017, 01:59 PM   #64
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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HOA= you never own it, they just let you use it as long as you pay them. Don't pay= forclosure
you never actually own the land either way. you are renting it from the city/town/county/whoever you pay taxes to. Stop paying taxes, they take your house.

HOA is just another layer on top.
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Old 07-13-2017, 02:03 PM   #65
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

HOA is instant no go for me. It would be nice to have someone help keep the neighbors looking after their place. I'd rather deal with them than an HOA. There is one lawsuit going on right now in town over kids bouncing a basketball outside. There is another about the size of a flag. My family and friends have had many problems with HOAs. My car got towed last year when it was parked in front of my sister's house for less than an hour. Too much can't park a car in the driveway. Garage door left open for hours crap for me.
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Old 07-13-2017, 02:10 PM   #66
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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20 years? I would've lit the trailer on fire before then.
I sold it three years after the trailer went in. It was appraised at $335K before the "granny flat" aka trailer in the side yard.

Driveway was 450' long; Most potential buyers drove in, saw the eyesore next door and drove right back out.

Finally got it sold- just under $200K

So, yeah, I'm a bit biased when it comes to HOA's protecting property values.
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Old 07-13-2017, 02:15 PM   #67
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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I would walk away. No chance i'd move into a neighborhood with an HOA.
No chance I wouldn't...
Instead of painting them all with the same brush learn about them.
I don't have to see cars parked on blocks across the street from me taking money out of my pocket when it's time to sell..
I have a racecar trailer and a boat parked behind my house (an acre) and can work on my stuff if I have respect for my neighbors...That means grinder and impact gun are used after dark with the garage door closed
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Old 07-13-2017, 02:49 PM   #68
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Originally Posted by idriveahonda View Post

Let's be real, if we all had neighbors like the members on here...we wouldn't need an HoA. Fact is, people suck...and without an HoA many times...would let their house go to crap.

Think some GJ guys have the potential to be part of the problem


.........hoarding stuff, running a small junk yard, doing "side work" on cars, flipping cars at all hours of the night and day.........which is all well and good........just not in all residential neighborhoods.

Example....city up north of us recently banned tent like storage building as they are eye sore. City wide no exceptions now enforced by code. In the Past they were allowed by temporary permit for limited time periods. Guess your still allowed to store your shit outside uncovered ???? So they the city decided tent storage was worse........

In case your not sure want they are banning:

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Old 07-13-2017, 03:17 PM   #69
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I’ve worked in real estate for nearly 20 years now. RE agents lie to get sales – period. I’ve worked for and against HOA’s – they generally are not your friend and may not be your neighbor. Off the top of my head . . .

Good, honest information is what you need, but it is going to be state specific. The ones here who have said get out are about right.

- who screwed up here? The seller seems to have lied about a significant aspect of the house/area. If they knew you did not want to be in an HOA then it was likely intentional.

- what should I do next? Lawyer up, get out of the “deal”. Are you within the recission period? Contact the state real estate dept and see what the laws are. See if the agent has a disciplinary record. File a report on the deception (if it was). Get all your docs in a row, was the “no HOA” spelled out. Get an and all money back.
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Old 07-13-2017, 03:29 PM   #70
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Smile Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Another reason I don't live in subdivision is I really just don't like people. I don't see how people live in some of these neighborhoods houses literally like 20 ft apart, behind, in front everywhere! I'm a private person and don't want neighbors in my business. I'm at my home leave me alone, I won't bother you at yours either. It also erks me when people complain about noise from the local dirt tracks/drag strips after they move in around them. Tracks have been here 50+ years don't move here. I talked to a city leader once about it and he said it was here first, city grew to it so they just have to live with it, or move.
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Old 07-13-2017, 03:34 PM   #71
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Originally Posted by PugetDude View Post
I sold it three years after the trailer went in. It was appraised at $335K before the "granny flat" aka trailer in the side yard.

Driveway was 450' long; Most potential buyers drove in, saw the eyesore next door and drove right back out.

Finally got it sold- just under $200K

So, yeah, I'm a bit biased when it comes to HOA's protecting property values.
Did you try calling the landowner to see if you could pay to remove it?
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Old 07-13-2017, 03:59 PM   #72
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Think some GJ guys have the potential to be part of the problem


.........hoarding stuff, running a small junk yard, doing "side work" on cars, flipping cars at all hours of the night and day.........which is all well and good........just not in all residential
Yep I do most of the above, but on 35 acres w enough trees no one can see what I'm doing. Grinder and impact are used at all hours anytime I want 'cause there's no one around to complain.

But trust me, if people can SEE what you're doing they'll complain, even if it in no way affects them. You come home too late, you should be working, why is your kid not in school, is that your gf or your wife.....it doesn't matter, some little old lady is always looking to start shit and be nosey.

But if they can't SEE, then they have much less to bitch about. Basically ignorance is bliss.
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Old 07-13-2017, 04:04 PM   #73
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

The one thing you have to remember is THE REAL ESTATE AGENTS WORK FOR THEMSELF
not the buyer, not the seller. They don't care - it's all about the commission to them.
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Old 07-13-2017, 04:23 PM   #74
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Another reason I don't live in subdivision is I really just don't like people. I don't see how people live in some of these neighborhoods houses literally like 20 ft apart, behind, in front everywhere! I'm a private person and don't want neighbors in my business. I'm at my home leave me alone, I won't bother you at yours either. It also erks me when people complain about noise from the local dirt tracks/drag strips after they move in around them. Tracks have been here 50+ years don't move here. I talked to a city leader once about it and he said it was here first, city grew to it so they just have to live with it, or move.

Try 10' apart! Some jurisdictions near me have 5' min side yard setbacks with 10' minimum house separation!
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Old 07-13-2017, 04:28 PM   #75
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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We're definitely beating this to death, but another point is that there are law firms all over the country taking over HOA management rights from HOA boards that are sick of listening to all the complainers. Why? Because they can push you around all they want, fine you, take you to court, and in some states TAKE YOUR HOUSE. Search HOA foreclosures.

This example was a famous local cases where a couple had a $315K house they owned free and clear. He was deployed to Iraq. The HOA foreclosed because the wife was in a deep depression and so she didn't pay the ~$1K HOA bill. They lost the house which sold at auction for ~$3K. No court was able to get their house back, it's gone.

https://www.dallasnews.com/news/fris...of-Frisco-5503
As a past HOA pres I can tell you that law firms can't "take over" an HOA unless they own 51% of the homes there. All a homeowner has to do to keep his house from a forced sale (or lein) is live up to the contract he signed. Most who don't like HOAs don't know jack about them. I imagine most on this forum would be happy in an HOA that was set up by car guys and mechanics.
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Old 07-13-2017, 04:29 PM   #76
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

"Whether you asked about it or not, I would think this would fall under failure to disclose by the realtor"

This is the key.
Cancel everything.
Demand refunds of all monies.
Get a lawyer if needed.
And a new realtor.

Belive me, your rep as to what is important to you will get around real fast in the RE community.
The next person you work with will be a lot more careful of what they show you.
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Old 07-13-2017, 04:44 PM   #77
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I could never live under an HOA. When I was a kid my parents bought their first house in a neighborhood without an HOA, but a year or so later all the stay at home moms decided to start one. Our house was the first house in the neighborhood and our side yard was on a busy street. My dad had built a very nice fence along the busy road to keep me and the rest of neighborhood kids off of the busy street. It was fine for years but once the HOA was formed they decided that we shouldnt have fences and my dad was ordered to tear it down. He fought it in court but lost and tore it down. About a week later the president of the HOA was coming down that busy road about to pull in the neighborhood and a giant buck deer ran right out into the road and totaled out her month old car, our fence would have stopped that deer. Since then I have always thought of HOAs as a bunch of busy bodies trying to find something to bitch about.
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Old 07-13-2017, 04:56 PM   #78
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I'm not against a reasonable HOA that simply requires homeowners maintain their houses and not have junk piled up. The ones that have strict rules on when a garage door can be open and rules against any cars or RVs parked outside and other silly rules are what give most HOAs a bad name.

I live in a city on the edge of a major metro area that has one acre lot minimums and no city water or sewer. Basically every new development since about 1990 has deed restrictions and covenants if not an actual HOA. Many of the deed restrictions don't allow RVs to be parked on the property and no out buildings. Pretty much the only thing that can be on the lot is a house with garage. A big part of the reason people move to large lots is so they can park RVs and build an extra garage!

I wanted to build new, but I couldn't find a decent lot without restrictions. I found two or three lots without restrictions, but they were all wet and one was unbuildable due to wetlands. I ended up buying a 1980 house that needed total renovation with no deed restrictions or HOA. I wanted to be in this city because the city allows a 3,000 square foot garage up to 45 feet tall.
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Old 07-13-2017, 05:08 PM   #79
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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I could never live under an HOA. When I was a kid my parents bought their first house in a neighborhood without an HOA, but a year or so later all the stay at home moms decided to start one. Our house was the first house in the neighborhood and our side yard was on a busy street. My dad had built a very nice fence along the busy road to keep me and the rest of neighborhood kids off of the busy street. It was fine for years but once the HOA was formed they decided that we shouldnt have fences and my dad was ordered to tear it down. He fought it in court but lost and tore it down. About a week later the president of the HOA was coming down that busy road about to pull in the neighborhood and a giant buck deer ran right out into the road and totaled out her month old car, our fence would have stopped that deer. Since then I have always thought of HOAs as a bunch of busy bodies trying to find something to bitch about.
This makes no sense to me. If you have no HOA and you want to form one, don't you need to have the approval of EVERYONE in that neighborhood? What if half a dozen people living there don't want to start one? Besides that, when the HOA forms, anything that is currently there at the time the HOA starts, should be grandfathered in. So that fence should be just fine the way it is.
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Old 07-13-2017, 05:09 PM   #80
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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I could never live under an HOA... Since then I have always thought of HOAs as a bunch of busy bodies trying to find something to bitch about.
really depends on the HOA. i live in one, but they're pretty relaxed as far as hoa's go - no chainlink fences, no boats/rv's/trailers parked in the driveways for >2 weeks/year, no odd colored houses, etc. dues are $25/year.

i've seen some hoa's where you can't have your garage door open unless your leaving/returning from home, can't park cars in the driveway, architectural reviews for vegetable gardens, "block captains" who inspect your property for covenant violations, etc. i couldn't imagine doing that.
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Old 07-13-2017, 05:12 PM   #81
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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This makes no sense to me. If you have no HOA and you want to form one, don't you need to have the approval of EVERYONE in that neighborhood? What if half a dozen people living there don't want to start one? Besides that, when the HOA forms, anything that is currently there at the time the HOA starts, should be grandfathered in. So that fence should be just fine the way it is.


I'll have to ask my dad but I think only one other house in the neighborhood voted against it so they claimed the majority of the people wanted it. The whole thing was ugly and probably not legal.


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Old 07-13-2017, 05:12 PM   #82
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Lawyer up!


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Old 07-13-2017, 05:13 PM   #83
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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I could never live under an HOA. When I was a kid my parents bought their first house in a neighborhood without an HOA, but a year or so later all the stay at home moms decided to start one. Our
I thought owners of existing properties couldn't be forced into an HOA after the fact? HOA requirements are usually made part of the deed when land is initially subdivided into lots for sale.
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Old 07-13-2017, 05:13 PM   #84
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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"Whether you asked about it or not, I would think this would fall under failure to disclose by the realtor"

This is the key.
Cancel everything.
Demand refunds of all monies.
Get a lawyer if needed.
And a new realtor.

Belive me, your rep as to what is important to you will get around real fast in the RE community.
The next person you work with will be a lot more careful of what they show you.
I already said that. The disclosure statement is from the seller, NOT the listing agent. You only go after the listing agent if you can prove they knew it was an HOA and intentionally listed it as not being one.
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Old 07-13-2017, 05:50 PM   #85
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I keep checking in to see if the HOA vs no-HOA question on GJ has been settled yet....


Apparently not.


Oh, the story about getting forced into an HOA? More likely 'there was an old HOA, it had never been used, when we bought they told us there was nobody running it- so we built the fence.' AND THEN they fired it back up
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Old 07-13-2017, 06:13 PM   #86
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

My friend bought a house and it said the house had city sewer. Come to find out it had a septic system that is way too close to the house. I told him he could've gone after the seller or is there some sort of insurance/bond that covers owner omissions?

He farted around and then had to pay $10k out of pocket to address the septic issues. I guess the statute of limitations has ran out.

Full disclosure by the seller is always best.
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Old 07-13-2017, 06:14 PM   #87
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I'm shocked that a realtor is just out to sell you a house and get their commission! Really? Who would have ever thought?!
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Old 07-13-2017, 06:17 PM   #88
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Call your attorney... tell them to cancel the sale for fraud... demand your deposit back. You will regret a HOA
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Old 07-13-2017, 06:18 PM   #89
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Originally Posted by Casey69 View Post
really depends on the HOA. i live in one, but they're pretty relaxed as far as hoa's go - no chainlink fences, no boats/rv's/trailers parked in the driveways for >2 weeks/year, no odd colored houses, etc. dues are $25/year.

i've seen some hoa's where you can't have your garage door open unless your leaving/returning from home, can't park cars in the driveway, architectural reviews for vegetable gardens, "block captains" who inspect your property for covenant violations, etc. i couldn't imagine doing that.
I couldn't even do that. Chain link is one of the most practical, durable, longest lasting and maintenance free options there is. I'll always choose chain link over any wood fence which will look like ass in 2 years and be peeling w twisted boards and boards popping off. Wood is such a shit show, you're signing up for a lifetime of regular maintenance.

Granted, some of the steel-cored vinyl products have gotten a lot better. But me being me would weld up a rectangular tube frame w Corten....assuming said HOA would allow "rusty metal" and that scary practice of welding which throws sparks
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Old 07-13-2017, 06:25 PM   #90
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Oh and I think the biggest thing that no one has clearly articulated here is that you're not signing up for the current rules. That's irrelevant.

You're agreeing to let the HOA have absolute control over you in the future for ANYTHING related to your property.. You are literally, willingly signing away your freedom. It's kinda like joining the Army - for the duration of your contract they own your ass. You HOPE they're reasonable and give you 3 hots & a cot but if your CO says you gotta sleep outside in the rain and you only eat once a day, you have no choice and no recourse - you agreed to this on the front end.
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Old 07-13-2017, 06:33 PM   #91
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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20 years? I would've lit the trailer on fire before then.
Naw he rather sell his home, lose money and become the president of an HOA ...... great logic, dumb move .....

I'm still laughing


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Old 07-13-2017, 06:43 PM   #92
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

HOA= An association of people who think they own your home


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Old 07-13-2017, 06:54 PM   #93
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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I keep checking in to see if the HOA vs no-HOA question on GJ has been settled yet....


Apparently not.


Oh, the story about getting forced into an HOA? More likely 'there was an old HOA, it had never been used, when we bought they told us there was nobody running it- so we built the fence.' AND THEN they fired it back up


I called my dad and that was exactly it. It was there but there wasn't a board and no dues had been collected in years.


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Old 07-13-2017, 06:55 PM   #94
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Mark me down for "walk away".
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Old 07-13-2017, 07:42 PM   #95
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Originally Posted by Ign View Post
Oh and I think the biggest thing that no one has clearly articulated here is that you're not signing up for the current rules. That's irrelevant.

You're agreeing to let the HOA have absolute control over you in the future for ANYTHING related to your property.. You are literally, willingly signing away your freedom. It's kinda like joining the Army - for the duration of your contract they own your ass. You HOPE they're reasonable and give you 3 hots & a cot but if your CO says you gotta sleep outside in the rain and you only eat once a day, you have no choice and no recourse - you agreed to this on the front end.
You actually do not know what you are talking about.

I can go into a legal discussion of the interrelationship between state law, recorded CC&Rs and how HOA 'rules' and 'policies' come from those. They are NOT 'absolute' nor 'total' as your hyperbole seeks to establish.


As can be seen from reading this thread, there is a broad spectrum of HOAs- some are malignant, but many establish a reasonable set of community norms to prevent one or two bad apples from making life miserable AND driving down property value.

I will also say that GJ tends to be rabidly anti-HOA. It is good, however, to see the occasional supporter. Adds some balance.



I will say that when I first drove into this development in 93, as I drove in the gate, I thought "who the F would want to live in a gated rural community with an HOA?!?!?". Turns out, me.

Our HOA collects $150 a month per lot, about $100k a year total budget. We spend 50-60k on roads (7 miles) and another 10k on gate upkeep and maintenance. Lake work, mowing and weeds accounts for about 20. The rest goes to future stuff. (Mailboxes, a riding arena, picnic area, etc) Legal? Under $1000 a year. Some years zero. We have not taken any homes nor have we eaten any children.
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Old 07-13-2017, 07:55 PM   #96
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I moved into a subdivision with a very weak HOA. Basically there to keep the entrances in nice shape. A year back a real estate agent got voted in as president. First thing he did was raise dues from $35 a year to $110 a year. Since HOA membership is voluntary, I told them to pound sand. Several members showed up to protest and they were shamed for not wanting to pay the increase.
It wasn't the money, it was the way they went about it. Screw em.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:20 PM   #97
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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You're agreeing to let the HOA have absolute control over you in the future for ANYTHING related to your property..
You clearly have no knowledge of this subject matter.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:27 PM   #98
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Run Gomer, run.

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Old 07-13-2017, 08:27 PM   #99
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Originally Posted by Ign View Post
Oh and I think the biggest thing that no one has clearly articulated here is that you're not signing up for the current rules. That's irrelevant.

You're agreeing to let the HOA have absolute control over you in the future for ANYTHING related to your property.. You are literally, willingly signing away your freedom. It's kinda like joining the Army - for the duration of your contract they own your ass. You HOPE they're reasonable and give you 3 hots & a cot but if your CO says you gotta sleep outside in the rain and you only eat once a day, you have no choice and no recourse - you agreed to this on the front end.
This is not true. You agree to reasonable future restrictions and those restrictions are based upon a democratic process that a super majority of homeowners all agree on.

Unless you are in a really rural location, most cities and towns have codes and ordinances which are usually created by bureaucrats and which you have no say in. If you violate those ordinances, not only will you get fined, but you could also be thrown in jail for repeated infractions.

There are a lot of benefits to a well run HOA and many pitfalls to a poorly run HOA. But even in a poorly run HOA, you can have a direct impact to change it for the better, try that with city code enforcement.
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:27 PM   #100
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Try 10' apart! Some jurisdictions near me have 5' min side yard setbacks with 10' minimum house separation!
I would be in a constant state of anxiety
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Old 07-13-2017, 08:48 PM   #101
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Default Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

As someone who currently owns a main residence not in a HOA, and several RE investments in two different HOA's, I can confidently say there are pro's and con's to all the situations.

Your HOA experience will almost certainly be dependent on the competency of the people running the HOA.

I'm a member of one that is professional, clear in their direction and well funded.

I'm also a member of another that is short sighted, divided and under funded.


One is a god send and the other has been a nightmare that ended up in with me vs them in front of a judge . I won. They hate me now.
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:39 PM   #102
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I agree with everyone else - stay away from HOA. Why take the risk of dealing with another "complexity" if you don't have to? You want the house, right? But you probably don't NEED it. Walk.
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:39 PM   #103
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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I'm in Australia .. I find this HOA stuff is an impost on your own personal space. We have "covenants" in some developments which are totally irrelevant .. The house owners tell the developers to F off . I feel you .. ie .. all american people should stand up against this sort of people control. Its ridiculous and contradicts your right to live "free" .
Why can people freely agree to form an HOA? Or, put another way, you are always free not buy an HOA home.
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:44 PM   #104
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Is the HOA active? As others have said find out, then you'll know if this is an issue or not.

That being said, even if it is inactive, it could be reinstated.

Our current home was built in 1978. The original owners of the land that the houses were built on were the HOA. They've all died.. there is nobody left to enforce the rules.

In many cases HOA's are paper tigers. A lot of rules that aren't followed and the HOA doesn't have the cahones to fight violators.. or perhaps the money to fight them in court.
After an HOA is inactive for a certain period of time it cannot be revived without approval of everyone that would be under its rules

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Old 07-13-2017, 09:45 PM   #105
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I would find out the status and position of the HOA. If it is inactive then that's great. Just be sure of the status and all before hand.
I would be looking at this very skeptical, and be having a talk with the agent.

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Old 07-13-2017, 09:53 PM   #106
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Thanks for all of the comments guys, I appreciate everyone's point of view. I am not walking away strictly based on the fact that an HOA exists. I should have probably chosen a better tittle for my initial post. I have lived in HOA communities my whole life and I feel like I know how to deal with them. My biggest issue was when I was informed there is an HOA is that I am pretty sure that all of the things I love about this house were not approved by the architectural review committee.

I spoke with my lawyer and he reassured me that there is an easy fix to this. If the seller can't provide an estoppel certificate stating that there are no dues owed, and that the entire property as it sits today has no violations and is given a thumbs up by the ARC, I walk away from the deal. Lawyer says that he is 95% sure HOA will provide what I need and that this document will protect me if for any reason the ARC gets an itch to poke around and start asking questions about the garage, fence, or driveway at any point in the future. The house was built in 1974, the garage has been there since 1995 so he says he seriously doubts the ARC will have an issue with providing a certificate stating everything is fine.

Reading the covenant document, this is the most lax HOA I have ever seen. I have no issues with the current rules. In fact, I like the current rules. If I have issues with future rules then I need to exercise my right to speak up or run for office and change them.
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:54 PM   #107
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

"You're agreeing to let the HOA have absolute control over you in the future for ANYTHING related to your property.."

That is not true. You have no idea what it is you are talking about. HOA's are governed by state laws and board members normally make decisions that in the best interest of the property in general. If you don't like the board members decisions, vote them out of the position.
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:56 PM   #108
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

HOA's .... Don't get me started, I am in Pennsylvania, Had the same property since 1972. They finally enforced the HOA, and demanded that the residents of the said area, pay back dues etc.... Long Story short, I took them to court spent a bunch of money to argue with ARSES, and still LOST... They are the devil and a god all in one... While mine was mainly after fixing roads and very limited maintenance, they finally conceded it was too much and turned it over to the local township at a pretty price to everyone.... They have building restrictions within reason, and I was not challenged on my garage, but they sure got in a tizzy over it....

They can get a group of residents, form a committee, take a vote, start and incorporation and then you are now part of it... Total double standard but our laws... Long story short. IF there are ANY at all WHAT IF's RUN RUN RUN... they will say ok until you own it... The realtor is responsible for their error, error and omissions insurance to be exact. They cannot penalize you for their error. IF they try, have your documents, get an attorney go to court and you will be awarded any losses, damages and expenses.... Realtors are snakes in well cut grass. They are after their bottom dollar... Perhaps worse than a used car salesman....
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Old 07-13-2017, 09:58 PM   #109
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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"You're agreeing to let the HOA have absolute control over you in the future for ANYTHING related to your property.."

That is not true. You have no idea what it is you are talking about. HOA's are governed by state laws and board members normally make decisions that in the best interest of the property in general. If you don't like the board members decisions, vote them out of the position.
The board members are usually a CLOSE group of friends with a swayed vote, if you don't play nice. They get their way, yes a majority vote but is the meeting when you can attend? Is it a stacked vote...

I love where my current house is, dad built as a summer home in 1972 I moved in full time when I bought the property in 2001.... If it wasn't for his hard work I would have sold A LONG LONG TIME ago.
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Old 07-13-2017, 10:12 PM   #110
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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I'm in Australia .. I find this HOA stuff is an impost on your own personal space. We have "covenants" in some developments which are totally irrelevant .. The house owners tell the developers to F off . I feel you .. ie .. all american people should stand up against this sort of people control. Its ridiculous and contradicts your right to live "free" .
x2 I bought a house and 7 years later was "introduced" to the the HOA president who informed me it was against the rules to park a commercial vehicle on the street in front of my house or in the driveway. I needed to be inside a garage. At the time he was talking about a 1 ton tow truck. I asked where he had been for all these years and this is news to me.

It upset me so much I brought home the Tandem axle Pete tow truck stopped by his his house and told him I was planning on building a bigger garage.

This went on for over a year of remarks of how I can't do this or that. That ended when I wrote a number on piece of paper and handed it to him. Told him his problem would go away as soon as he wrote me a check for that amount.

Lived there another 5 years in peace.
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Old 07-13-2017, 11:47 PM   #111
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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HOA's are good to have in a neighborhood. They keep things orderly and prevent people from trashing the neighborhood. I have multiple properties in HOA communities and I am director of one HOA.

A $50 per year fee is very low which indicates this is not a very involved association. Still, they have rules and regulations which can be enforced. You need to understand what involvement they have in your community.

First, draft an email to the president of the HOA explaining you are considering buying this house. Ask your questions in a short direct format. This is a volunteer position and the president doesn't have time to read your two page long letter of questions. Explain you are new to HOA living and want to understand certain aspects of the rules. Provide examples and ask if this is allowed.

I would delay closing until this issue is cleared away.

Some people here state HOA's are horrible and would never live in one. The feeling works both ways. I would not want to live next to some of the people who write on this board.
The problem is...a fine HOA today does not mean you may not have a nightmare HOA in the future...Sorry, but I treasure my freedom enough to be willing to allow other idiots to be idiots...at least those idiots will NEVER have any control over MY home and my choices, liberties and freedoms.
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Old 07-14-2017, 12:23 AM   #112
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Maybe CA is different. Here the listing agent will send the HOA docs to any interested buyers realtor before offers are written. Or it is sent very early on after offer is accepted
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Old 07-14-2017, 12:40 AM   #113
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Arrow Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I hate HOA's. Most of the time they are pretty bad. That being said the home we are in has an HOA. It's pretty chill for the most part. Certain things people get their panties in a bunch and then bitch... but usually nothing happens after a few days/weeks alter...lol

Completely agree about the swayed votes. I was actually just nominated to be on the HOA and now I'm the VP because the person stepping down didn't want the other member to nominate his friend and then have the balance of power swayed in the wrong direction...lol I'm pretty easy going. I will never fault someone for trying to improve their home. I have a very common sense approach with things and how to be efficient.

It seems like some people in the past on the HOA did not act like that. If you wanted to improve your home they would deny the request. I think this was for a couple reasons. Either being jealous that their future improvements that would stand out. Or they just didn't have said funds that the other person improving their house did and denied it on the fact that it would start making the other nice homes on the block look not as nice in comparison. This actually happened to me several times. I wanted to improve certain things. I replaced the standard crappy cement walk way going to the front door to a beautiful paver entrance, and added flagstone to the porch, along with a new windowed front door to replace the shitty standard builder door, added a front/side retaining wall. Re-did the deck/balusters and added a rear patio (none of which was cheap as far as looks or $$$) I got a lot of flax for it and I didn't realize why, until other people on other blocks would come up and compliment our house when they were walking their dogs or out to get some air. It made the other people's homes look worse because now mine looked better and it was very obvious that our house looked nicer. Honestly, I could care less about impressing other people I don't know. I did the upgrades because I like to come home to a house that I am proud of and enjoy putting things into it to show our personalities (It's like one never ending mod project that actually builds your equity/money instead of leeching money when you mod cars).

If ALL the homes look the same then they can ALL look mediocre and no one complains. You won't have people complaining UNITL two things start to happen. The neighbor/person starts letting shit go down the drain and the house looks worse. OR, you have a neighbor that is doing things to their house that ultimately make the homes beside them look just "OK" and no longer stand out. People get jealous AF anymore of the stupidest things. I find it quite amusing that the previous owner that lived in our house completely neglected outside maintenance as far as landscaping/grass...etc. I still find it comical that I had neighbors come up to me saying "wow, it's so weird to see your house with nice green grass" They were so used to the previous owner and the brown/no grass in the front of the yard. Yet I kept getting shit for improvements because I kept finding loopholes in the by-laws and that our rules didn't explicitly state certain things (sorry that's not my fault said rules are not 100% clear).

The only thing I like about the HOA is that I won't see some neighbor have his car on cinder blocks for weeks at a time or some stupid shit like that...

My wife's HOA in her townhouse that we rent is much more strict. If you leave your garbage can out side ANYWHERE visible after pickup you will get fined. Her HOA is much larger mind you.. several hundred homes/town houses. The community that we are at now is only 29, so that's why I think it's more lack..

OP: If you are OK with the rules of the HOA then you are fine. Double check on the garage and get it in writing. A LOT of people on here shit on a lot of stuff, but then you find out where or how they live and what might be acceptable to one person is completely NOT acceptable to another. Neither is right/wrong it's ultimately what fits YOUR lifestyle.

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Old 07-14-2017, 08:04 AM   #114
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Nigel, I agree with you.

Some HoA's have very jealous people on the BoD.

I am one of those people who gets quite upset when our trash pickup is Tuesday morning, and there is still a trashcan on the curb on Friday. Seriously folks, it takes less than a minute to walk up your 30ft driveway and put in your garage or backyard.

You let your grass grow wild, or don't upkeep edging...looks bad on the entire block. You don't clean your siding/roof and algae growing all over it...looks bad on the entire block (and bad for your house). Have cars on jackstands in your driveway (for days/weeks at a time), looks bad on the entire block.

HoA's are there to keep unreasonable people, within reason...and those who can't understand that...out.

Again, let me reiterate...I hate mine...solely based on the amount spent, and the benefit (none, other than above). Our balance sheet is FILLED with legal fees, which myself and some other homeowners are having a discussion with the property management company. It's either do something about delinquent homeowners, or don't. Don't incur all these costs without repurcussions...because it only affects the other homeowners.
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Old 07-14-2017, 08:18 AM   #115
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Originally Posted by jmvar View Post
Thanks for all of the comments guys, I appreciate everyone's point of view. I am not walking away strictly based on the fact that an HOA exists. I should have probably chosen a better tittle for my initial post. I have lived in HOA communities my whole life and I feel like I know how to deal with them. My biggest issue was when I was informed there is an HOA is that I am pretty sure that all of the things I love about this house were not approved by the architectural review committee.

I spoke with my lawyer and he reassured me that there is an easy fix to this. If the seller can't provide an estoppel certificate stating that there are no dues owed, and that the entire property as it sits today has no violations and is given a thumbs up by the ARC, I walk away from the deal. Lawyer says that he is 95% sure HOA will provide what I need and that this document will protect me if for any reason the ARC gets an itch to poke around and start asking questions about the garage, fence, or driveway at any point in the future. The house was built in 1974, the garage has been there since 1995 so he says he seriously doubts the ARC will have an issue with providing a certificate stating everything is fine.

Reading the covenant document, this is the most lax HOA I have ever seen. I have no issues with the current rules. In fact, I like the current rules. If I have issues with future rules then I need to exercise my right to speak up or run for office and change them.
Hope things work out for you - Close, move in and previous residence sells.

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Old 07-14-2017, 08:29 AM   #116
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Which is worse:

1. Someone putting their trash can out the night before or leaving it a day after and the odd lawn that isn't manicured.

Or...

2. Being flipped off every time you drive through the neighborhood, any conversation between neighbors includes a treat of lawsuits, and people that are obsessed with pointing out any possible violation by their neighbors to the board.

Enforce 1 and you will get 2, always happens, it's just a matter of time. HOA's devolve into a vicious back stabbing power struggle where those in power take care of their friends and use their "authority" to try and chase the people they don't like out of the neighborhood. "Violations" are never treated equally, they are always influenced by the boards bias.

Kind of like a popularity contest back in 8th grade, except with attorneys.
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Old 07-14-2017, 08:38 AM   #117
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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That is not true. You have no idea what it is you are talking about. HOA's are governed by state laws and board members normally make decisions that in the best interest of the property in general. If you don't like the board members decisions, vote them out of the position.
This is where I politely tell you to fuck off. HOA's can and DO go above and beyond state laws. Want to put a vent on the side of your garage for a heater. Nope, no front facing vents.
Hell, do you even remember the time when HOA's could block you from putting up a dish for satellite TV. People had to fight for the right to do so and created legislation just to have the right to do so.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AJ1978 View Post
The board members are usually a CLOSE group of friends with a swayed vote, if you don't play nice. They get their way, yes a majority vote but is the meeting when you can attend? Is it a stacked vote...
Couldn't have said it better.
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Old 07-14-2017, 08:47 AM   #118
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Luckily HOA's are not that popular in MA, although we have our problems.
I'm amazed by the amount of comments like...
"You don't clean your siding/roof and algea growing all over it...looks bad on the entire block (and bad for your house)."
Algea? Really? This is what concerns us? My house is well cared for, my lawn is lush, but my trash and recycling bins live outside and visible from the street. Oh my! I don't have a rusting hulk up on blocks in my yard, but I've got a few neighbors with boats in the yard. Wonder what is going on there? Something sinister I bet.
Unless buying is a sea of cheap rental properties, is this really an issue.
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Old 07-14-2017, 09:11 AM   #119
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Luckily HOA's are not that popular in MA, although we have our problems.
I'm amazed by the amount of comments like...
"You don't clean your siding/roof and algea growing all over it...looks bad on the entire block (and bad for your house)."
Algea? Really? This is what concerns us? My house is well cared for, my lawn is lush, but my trash and recycling bins live outside and visible from the street. Oh my! I don't have a rusting hulk up on blocks in my yard, but I've got a few neighbors with boats in the yard. Wonder what is going on there? Something sinister I bet.
Unless buying is a sea of cheap rental properties, is this really an issue.
Yes, this is what concerns me in particular (edited).

When you are in a neighborhood of expensive houses, and all are maintained meticulously...those things I mentioned are "mentionables".

Walk down a street of houses with light-colored siding. You come across one with algae buildup and now looks green. It stands out, VERY clearly.

Walk down that same street, and a neighbor still hasn't brought in their trashcan...it stands out, VERY clearly.

Yes, if you have a car parked in your front yard, and not on the driveway/curb...that is a problem.

Again, if you don't live in an HoA for those reasons...that is your choice. For the reasons I have mentioned above, is why I will pay some from my pocket to live in a neighborhood with reasonable HoA bylaws.
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Old 07-14-2017, 09:41 AM   #120
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Originally Posted by alexb2000 View Post
Which is worse:

1. Someone putting their trash can out the night before or leaving it a day after and the odd lawn that isn't manicured.

Or...

2. Being flipped off every time you drive through the neighborhood, any conversation between neighbors includes a treat of lawsuits, and people that are obsessed with pointing out any possible violation by their neighbors to the board.

Enforce 1 and you will get 2, always happens, it's just a matter of time. HOA's devolve into a vicious back stabbing power struggle where those in power take care of their friends and use their "authority" to try and chase the people they don't like out of the neighborhood. "Violations" are never treated equally, they are always influenced by the boards bias.

Kind of like a popularity contest back in 8th grade, except with attorneys.
IDK man, my neighborhood was developed in 1980 and HOA established. It is still one of the best kept and FRIENDLY neighborhoods in the area. Our HOA is very active, as an example when I moved in we were throwing away a ton of stuff that we had brought and I left both roller trashcans just in front of the garage a night or two instead of on the side of the house. I got a letter in a day saying they couldn't be there on a non-trash day.

I laughed it off, then put my trashcans away, no big deal.

We hang out with our neighbors at least 2 times a week, we were over their house last night actually.
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Old 07-14-2017, 09:58 AM   #121
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IDK man, my neighborhood was developed in 1980 and HOA established. It is still one of the best kept and FRIENDLY neighborhoods in the area. Our HOA is very active, as an example when I moved in we were throwing away a ton of stuff that we had brought and I left both roller trashcans just in front of the garage a night or two instead of on the side of the house. I got a letter in a day saying they couldn't be there on a non-trash day.

I laughed it off, then put my trashcans away, no big deal.

We hang out with our neighbors at least 2 times a week, we were over their house last night actually.
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Old 07-14-2017, 10:06 AM   #122
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

So much randomness in this thread with people's experiences with HOA's. I do not live in one now, but did at my last house.

You cannot compare one association to another without reading the by-laws to see what they will control. Each association will vary.

My association was $120 a year, and handled snow clean up and maintaining the common grounds. They left everyone alone, and we didn't have any issues. They work in the right situations...
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Old 07-14-2017, 10:23 AM   #123
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Just to recap all of the comments in this thread - a HOA can be a mixed bag and sometimes it's good and sometimes it's not. The point is to make sure you know what you're getting into before you buy a house within a HOA.
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Old 07-14-2017, 10:39 AM   #124
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

"... or carport (designed for use by not more than (2) automobiles)..."

I read this as limiting a carport to "not more than (2) automobiles)" not the structures preceding the 'or'. But then I'm a bit like my dad who had been accused on more than one occasion or 'picking fly shit out of pepper.'

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Old 07-14-2017, 10:42 AM   #125
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Just to recap all of the comments in this thread - a HOA can be a mixed bag and sometimes it's good and sometimes it's not. The point is to make sure you know what you're getting into before you buy a house within a HOA.
Having lived in an HOA, that's a pretty decent summary. Talk to the neighbors and such before you buy in. Might be all right. I can show you plenty of pics of areas where that highly touted "freedom of expression" has been practiced. By and large, it's not pretty. In a smaller community with limited or no code enforcement resources it can get pretty bad.
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Old 07-14-2017, 11:14 AM   #126
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My in-laws live in an HOA community in AZ that has RV, solar screen and trash can rules in addition to others. One of the RV rules state that you can't store or park your RV onsite or in front of your home. It can only be parked there 24-hrs prior to and after any trip (load/unload time.) One trip I remember, they got home on a Wednesday afternoon/evening so they had Thursday to unload. But, they were leaving again on Saturday, so they could load on Friday. Trailer was in front of the home from Wednesday evening to Saturday morning when they left. Yep, got another letter. They are active RV'ers, at least once a month or more. They keep getting letters from the "HOA Nazis" (my MIL's term) about their trailer.

They got a letter ordering them to replace the window screens because the sun had faded them to a grey color from the original black.

Trash cans-have to be out the morning on pick up and put away, out of sight within 2-hrs of pick up. WHAT? Ok, not to bad for a retired couple but what about a working couple? "Hey, Boss...I have to go home every 2-hrs so I can check to see if the trash has been emptied so I can put the bins away." Yeah, like that will work....

Now, they do like the clean, well maintained houses, landscaping etc. but there are some petty rules with their HOA but at least they can park in the driveway.

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Old 07-14-2017, 11:21 AM   #127
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My in-laws live in an HOA community in AZ that has RV, solar screen and trash can rules in addition to others. One of the RV rules state that you can't store or park your RV onsite or in front of your home. It can only be parked there 24-hrs prior to and after any trip (load/unload time.) One trip I remember, they got home on a Wednesday afternoon/evening so they had Thursday to unload. But, they were leaving again on Saturday, so they could load on Friday. Trailer was in front of the home from Wednesday evening to Saturday morning when they left. Yep, got another letter. They are active RV'ers, at least once a month or more. They keep getting letters from the "HOA Nazis" (my MIL's term) about their trailer.

They got a letter ordering them to replace the window screens because the sun had faded them to a grey color from the original black.

Trash cans-have to be out the morning on pick up and put away, out of sight within 2-hrs of pick up. WHAT? Ok, not to bad for a retired couple but what about a working couple? "Hey, Boss...I have to go home every 2-hrs so I can check to see in the trash has been emptied so I can put the bins away." Yeah, like that will work....

Ray
I think you'll find most newer neighborhoods with HOA's in the Phoenix metro area are like this, with the exception of the strict trash can regulation you stated. In my hood, we can take them out the night before and collect them them on the evening of the pick up day. Two hours pick up seems a bit over the top.

But, we reviewed the HOA regs. and still signed on the dotted line when we bought our home in this HOA hood. Some regs are nit-picking silly. Overall though, it does keep the DIY car repair rat and home based business slugs out of here.
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Old 07-14-2017, 11:32 AM   #128
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I'm in Australia .. I find this HOA stuff is an impost on your own personal space. We have "covenants" in some developments which are totally irrelevant .. The house owners tell the developers to F off . I feel you .. ie .. all american people should stand up against this sort of people control. Its ridiculous and contradicts your right to live "free" .
Like anything, it's an option. If you don't like the rules of a HOA, don't purchase a house in a HOA. I see a lot of neighbors with trash outside and shitty-maintained properties with junk everywhere, and I totally understand why some people wish to live in a HOA. It's just not for me.

But I don't get why people complain about them existing, or move in to a house in one and then complain about it.
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Old 07-14-2017, 11:39 AM   #129
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Like anything, it's an option. If you don't like the rules of a HOA, don't purchase a house in a HOA. I see a lot of neighbors with trash outside and shitty-maintained properties with junk everywhere, and I totally understand why some people wish to live in a HOA. It's just not for me.

But I don't get why people complain about them existing, or move in to a house in one and then complain about it.
I have a family member who lives in a fairly nice high end neighborhood, all the residents have a couple of acres.

But, to get to his neighborhood, you'd think you were driving through the poorest part of Louisiana to get to it. Surrounded by old, run down, trailer trash, or build it yourself "homes", all in non-HOA neighborhoods.
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Old 07-14-2017, 11:50 AM   #130
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Our one experience with HOAs has been nothing but negative and for that, we will never live in a neighborhood run by an HOA again, period.
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Old 07-14-2017, 01:29 PM   #131
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You let your grass grow wild, or don't upkeep edging...looks bad on the entire block. You don't clean your siding/roof and algae growing all over it...looks bad on the entire block (and bad for your house). Have cars on jackstands in your driveway (for days/weeks at a time), looks bad on the entire block.
You would hate my neighborhood then. I have never edged my lawn and don't ever plan to do so. My lawn will never have the golf course look as I don't use fertilizer or weed killer and don't irrigate. I don't think any of my neighbors regularly use fertilizer or weed killer because the lawn sizes are between two and five acres.

I don't have the best lawn in the neighborhood, but neither do I have the worst lawn in the neighborhood either. Some neighbors only cut about every four weeks and it looks terrible when they do cut. One neighbor only cut along the road this week for the first time this year and the grass/weeds was three feet tall!

One neighbor has all kinds of junk in his driveway. I could probably call the city, but why? It isn't bothering me. My house was an eyesore when I bought it, but it has been completely renovated. I'm still working on cleaning up the landscaping three years later.
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Old 07-14-2017, 01:31 PM   #132
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But I don't get why people complain about them existing, or move in to a house in one and then complain about it.
In some areas it is unfortunately harder and harder to find non HOA subdivisions. In my area a very high percentage of the homes available are HOA, and basically 100% of the newer subdivisions are HOA. This seems to be a growing trend with developers I guess.
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Old 07-14-2017, 01:35 PM   #133
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I think the main reason most people on this forum dislike HOAs is because HOAs often don't allow them to enjoy their hobbies at home.

It is common for HOAs in my area to not allow any additional buildings so someone could not build an additional garage for their hobby. HOAs also commonly do not allow storage of RVs except in a building. The problem is the HOA won't allow building of a garage large enough to store an RV.
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Old 07-14-2017, 02:10 PM   #134
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In some areas it is unfortunately harder and harder to find non HOA subdivisions. In my area a very high percentage of the homes available are HOA, and basically 100% of the newer subdivisions are HOA. This seems to be a growing trend with developers I guess.
It's done almost 100% in Harris County (Houston area) because there are no controls outside the city. And not much inside. Developers do it primarily in an attempt to prop up the values by locking out - they hope - the riff raff. Riff raff can come with deep pockets, so LOL sometimes. Makes it harder to sell a house or even a neighborhood when one of the $250K properties has grass up to your knees and the portico painted pink.

If you sift a lot of the horror stories, a sorta common theme comes in - retirement communities and higher end properties. Apparently certain groups of older folks want only green grass and golf carts forever, and everyone better toe the line because we got nothing better to do than putt around and make sure every blade of your grass is at the prescribed height and color.

Some of the higher end communities just get down right snooty and we don't want your kind around here. I'd be the Caddyshack Rodney Dangerfield in a $500K neighborhood if we had the bucks. Unload the dragster in the street and park the 34' trailer in the drive, you betcha. Have a friend that lives in a high buck rather exclusive (mostly by price) golf community and owns a very nice hot rod Camaro. He respects the peace but still gets the "look" from some of the neighbors.

In between there are many that are run by reasonable folks just trying to keep the place clean and nice for general family living.
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Old 07-14-2017, 02:26 PM   #135
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Find out if all neighbors are actual owners and not renters.
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Old 07-14-2017, 02:27 PM   #136
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It's done almost 100% in Harris County (Houston area) because there are no controls outside the city. And not much inside. Developers do it primarily in an attempt to prop up the values by locking out - they hope - the riff raff. Riff raff can come with deep pockets, so LOL sometimes. Makes it harder to sell a house or even a neighborhood when one of the $250K properties has grass up to your knees and the portico painted pink.
I know this all too well. The house behind me sold for $220k last year (probably nearly double the average home cost in my area) and there seems to be like 10 people living there at times. Always hearing old junky cars rev the engine, several boats in the yard constantly being worked on, old hot tub sitting in the middle of the yard, etc. Luckily the area adjoining my property is the wooded half of their property so 9 months of the year I can't see their crap. I feel bad for our shared neighbors who house is 20 feet from the trash, and theirs is one of the nicest houses on the block at around $250k. But this is to be expected as "shorebillys" are the norm around here.
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Old 07-14-2017, 03:07 PM   #137
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This makes no sense to me. If you have no HOA and you want to form one, don't you need to have the approval of EVERYONE in that neighborhood? What if half a dozen people living there don't want to start one? Besides that, when the HOA forms, anything that is currently there at the time the HOA starts, should be grandfathered in. So that fence should be just fine the way it is.
Here in Florida nobody can form a NEW HOA and annex someones property without the property owners consent. I doubt it happens in other states either. There is no grandfathering unless the HOA says so. What can be formed is a Homeowners Association without individual owners consent and it has zero legal authority. HOAs rules are changed by majority vote. Otherwise, read the HOA rules before deciding you don't like it. There are some I won't live in and others that are fine. A buyer should get a full disclosure of the HOA documents and financials before signing a contract.
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Old 07-14-2017, 03:18 PM   #138
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The problem with HOAs is they are run by people, and people can be emotional fools and make knee-jerk decisions. The HOA at my MIL's turned off the landscape water to save money and killed everyone's yards. I don't think that did much to prop up property values.....
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Old 07-14-2017, 03:30 PM   #139
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The house was built in 1974, the garage has been there since 1995 so he says he seriously doubts the ARC will have an issue with providing a certificate stating everything is fine.

Reading the covenant document, this is the most lax HOA I have ever seen. I have no issues with the current rules. In fact, I like the current rules. If I have issues with future rules then I need to exercise my right to speak up or run for office and change them.
Read the CC&Rs inside and out, over and over. A well drafted CC&R will give a time limit for action by any comittee, most often the ACC (architectural comittee). Clearly though, a garage in existance since 1995 has passed all statutory limits and it is in no danger of demolition by the HOA.
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Old 07-14-2017, 03:42 PM   #140
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I'd be the Caddyshack Rodney Dangerfield in a $500K neighborhood if we had the bucks. Unload the dragster in the street and park the 34' trailer in the drive, you betcha. Have a friend that lives in a high buck rather exclusive (mostly by price) golf community and owns a very nice hot rod Camaro. He respects the peace but still gets the "look" from some of the neighbors.
This is 100% going to be me. Many 4 car garages in the subdivision (including our upcoming build), quite nice houses (I joke with my wife we are buying a McMasion), pretty straighforward HOA that just covers RV/trailer/junk car parking(a 4 car garage is a build option for those with stuff like me), outbuildings other than sheds, architectural design, and upkeep on the neighborhood monument. Not much else. I read through the HOA rules as well as the city rules and it looks like I can ride my snowmobile right from the garage to the farm field a half block down and be on the trails. They are going to love that! But overall, I like the idea of the HOA and I like nice, kept things and will fit right in. I just happen to like motorsports. Yesterday I rode to the pre-construction meeting on my supermoto and the subdivision's realtor said no-one had ever ridden their motorcylce to a meeting, much less a dirtbike haha. I'd hazard a guess most are coming in their Lexus or BMW. I did get a wave from a ~7 year old playing in the driveway across the street from the model.

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Old 07-14-2017, 03:53 PM   #141
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We're definitely beating this to death, but another point is that there are law firms all over the country taking over HOA management rights from HOA boards that are sick of listening to all the complainers. Why? Because they can push you around all they want, fine you, take you to court, and in some states TAKE YOUR HOUSE. Search HOA foreclosures.

This example was a famous local cases where a couple had a $315K house they owned free and clear. He was deployed to Iraq. The HOA foreclosed because the wife was in a deep depression and so she didn't pay the ~$1K HOA bill. They lost the house which sold at auction for ~$3K. No court was able to get their house back, it's gone.

https://www.dallasnews.com/news/fris...of-Frisco-5503


As a past HOA pres I can tell you that law firms can't "take over" an HOA unless they own 51% of the homes there.
Absolutely correct. The post by alexb is full of incorrect information. Furthermore, any management company works for the BOD, who can fire the MC at any time, within contractural limits. The linked Dallas News article is a red herring. Cities and other jurisdictions can also foreclose, and all of this could have been avoided by opening some mail. Too bad, so sad. People need to be responsible for them selves. Too bad they got their house back in court.
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Old 07-14-2017, 05:25 PM   #142
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I've never had a bad experience with an HOA but I have had a bad experience several years ago with a trashy neighbor and wished that area had an HOA. He parked his nice cars in front of his house and his work truck in front of mine. he remodeled apartments for a living and had his truck full of trash with a toilet on top, so I would look out my front door to a view of a toilet. After calling the city and having his truck towed twice he finally emptied it. Now as I close in on retirement I bought 2 acres 50 miles outside of town, no HOA no neighbors, people think I am crazy for driving over 100 miles to work and back everyday but I don't have to deal with anyone else and I only have 229 more days to make that drive. I have one guy that lives close but he isn't there much, my closest full time neighbor is a little more than 1/4 mile away. I could care less what he does. I just have to be careful I don't become the trashy one of the area.
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Old 07-14-2017, 06:23 PM   #143
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I would run as far and fast as I could from HOA. Why would anyone want someone to be able to tell you what you can and can't do in YOUR property. It's bad enough we have county zoning with BS rules.

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Old 07-14-2017, 06:37 PM   #144
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So glad I'm moving to northern Maine.
Next door feller is a farmer with a backhoe in his driveway, my kind of neighbor.
No certificate of occupancy, you can build or do almost anything you want, and they do.
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Old 07-14-2017, 06:48 PM   #145
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Absolutely correct. The post by alexb is full of incorrect information. Furthermore, any management company works for the BOD, who can fire the MC at any time, within contractural limits. The linked Dallas News article is a red herring. Cities and other jurisdictions can also foreclose, and all of this could have been avoided by opening some mail. Too bad, so sad. People need to be responsible for them selves. Too bad they got their house back in court.
What part is incorrect, law firms are very involved in HOA management? Just google that.

Yes the management company works for the BOD, they do the drive throughs for violations, issue the letters, issue and collect the fines, collect the dues, manage the foreclosure for lack of due payments, updates and distributes the CCR's, attends the board meetings, keeps the books, runs the elections, etc., but yes there is tacit approval by the BOD generally once a year when they sign a contract authorizing them to do all of the above on their behalf. They can be fired during the contract term for cause, not a low hurdle, especially when the management company is full of lawyers. So it rarely happens. Law firms do this because there is a lot of legal work involved and it pays very well. More and more BODs are advocating all this work to these management companies because its an unpaid position that is only interesting because of the power to direct the neighborhood and sure isn't worth all of a persons free time and the constant hassles. The above tasks sound like they are taking over the HOA functions doesn't it?

Are all HOAs run that way? No, but a large percentage are, so what is untrue about the above? BTW I'm not just some tourist posting this, I have investment real estate in HOA developments and I deal with it everyday. Someone that owns a house in an HOA as a single point of experience and maybe a couple of past experiences in a different house, that does not give a broad perspective of how nasty these things can get.

Regardless, it's a free country if someone wants to live in an HOA neighborhood all I can say is get your lawyer involved before you sign a contract, do your homework, and know what you are signing up for. Most people don't even read the CCR's until closing day when they sign a receipt of acknowledgement and compliance and take them home to find out what they say.

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Old 07-14-2017, 07:41 PM   #146
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Find out if all neighbors are actual owners and not renters.
This. I have the Neighbors app and a local subdivision is exploding with anger because the HOA is not enforcing any rules on the renters but coming down hard on the owners for silly shit.

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Old 07-14-2017, 08:12 PM   #147
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It's bad enough we have county zoning with BS rules.
Zoning helps protects property values from people who think the rules are BS.
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Old 07-14-2017, 08:19 PM   #148
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Boy am I glad that where I live there is not a HOA but we have a paper tiger of a private road maintenance association because of easements on others properties for the road. The reason I call it a paper tiger is the way the road maintenance agreement is written it is so full of loop holes that if we assess a fee you actually do not have to pay it if you do not agree with the assessment. What I am talking about is the fact that we paved the road that is considered a improvement and thus it does not have to be paid even if everyone on the road benefits.

I had one neighbor complain about the roads poor surface and I looked at him and told him do not bitch about it as he never paid for the paving that ends a block away from his property, I know as I handled the money in the escrow account for the road maintenance for ten years. If he wanted the road paved and fix to do it himself out of his pocket and I would not help nor pay for his section of road to be paved.

These are the normal things and I also got the same neighbor all pissed when I got it passed by the association to install speed bumps to slow folks down and the idiot was mad as it makes everyone slow down the big issue is the speed limit is 20 MPH on the entire road. On the paved sections of the road some folks seem to have a reading issue and are sometimes well over double the speed limit.

Since I am not in a HOA by they have a fit as I am trailer trash in a 30 year old manufactured home with 2 garages one is a 28 X 48 steel pole building that was on the property when I bought the property and the 2nd garage is 36 X 38 pole building with residential siding on it. the other issue is my fence as it is a 42" wire field fence. It is mainly to keep critter out and keep my dogs on the property where they do not go around bothering the livestock. Since this is a rural area I live in it has never had a HOA. I would never buy into the HOA, the road association I am fine with as it is easily dealt with and you always have jack asses where ever you live
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Old 07-14-2017, 09:09 PM   #149
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

My HOA is fine. Some certainly aren't. Life goes on and there are no absolutes.

Like it's been said get a statement from the HOA that everything is OK and make the call. Heck this is a good opportunity to deal with the HOA to see how good or crappy they are. The other option is the town may have some drawings with the HOA approval written on them. My garage has that on the house plans which detail the detached garage as well.
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Old 07-14-2017, 09:28 PM   #150
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This. I have the Neighbors app and a local subdivision is exploding with anger because the HOA is not enforcing any rules on the renters but coming down hard on the owners for silly shit.
I used that app for while and then found out my neighbors are a bunch of frigging morons. Never did I think a group of people could be so dumb. I had been content being ignorant of their stupidity. Now I cannot even talk or look at most of them without thinking about how idiotic they are.
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Old 07-14-2017, 11:34 PM   #151
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.....

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What part is incorrect, law firms are very involved in HOA management? Just google that. A law firm that takes on management of a HOA jepordizes their ability to act as the legal representative of that HOA. There are many HOA's with a management company running the day to day operations, but very few hire a law firm to do that. Just google that, and you'll see the falacy of your statement

Yes the management company works for the BOD, they do the drive throughs for violations, issue the letters, issue and collect the fines, collect the dues, manage the foreclosure for lack of due payments, updates and distributes the CCR's CC&Rs can only be modified , at the minimum, by the BOD. More likely it requires 60% of the HOA, if not more, attends the board meetings, keeps the books, runs the elections, etc., but yes there is tacit approval by the BOD generally once a year when they sign a contract authorizing them to do all of the above on their behalf. They can be fired during the contract term for cause, not a low hurdle, especially when the management company is full of lawyers. So it rarely happens. Law firms do this because there is a lot of legal work involved and it pays very well Most management companies are not law firms, because turning on the sprinklers and keeping the books is not the work of an attorney More and more BODs are advocating all this work to these management companies because its an unpaid position that is only interesting because of the power to direct the neighborhood and sure isn't worth all of a persons free time and the constant hassles. The above tasks sound like they are taking over the HOA functions doesn't it? You're speaking of management companies, not law firms. Your entire premise was that law firms were taking over as HOA management, remember?

Are all HOAs run that way? No, but a large percentage are, so what is untrue about the above? BTW I'm not just some tourist posting this, I have investment real estate in HOA developments and I deal with it everyday. Someone that owns a house in an HOA as a single point of experience and maybe a couple of past experiences in a different house, that does not give a broad perspective of how nasty these things can get. Good, we have similar experience
If you read about the Clauer case, you'll see that it was the HOA that foreclosed, and that they used council. It wasn't something that the "law firm that controlled the HOA" did. Just google it.
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Old 07-15-2017, 11:06 AM   #152
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

This thread has lost it's way. I reiterate, walk away & sue for false disclosure.

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Old 07-15-2017, 11:14 AM   #153
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This thread has lost it's way. I reiterate, walk away & sue for false disclosure.
You sue for damages. While he has suffered damage, they are minimal.
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Old 07-15-2017, 11:58 AM   #154
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This. I have the Neighbors app and a local subdivision is exploding with anger because the HOA is not enforcing any rules on the renters but coming down hard on the owners for silly shit.
Renters have the same rights yet don't have to follow the same guidelines.
More like bull s**t than silly s**t. I could fill this page with the nonsense from the subdivision/HOA crap we had to deal with.
Thankfully, we moved out faster than we moved in


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This thread has lost it's way. I reiterate, walk away & sue for false disclosure.

Tommy
I agree, walk away. Not sure there's enough to file a suit though.
At least get the deposit back.
Earnest and due diligence money may be handed over to the seller due to the buyer backing out.
Someone please correct me if I'm wrong.
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Old 07-15-2017, 12:11 PM   #155
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I agree, walk away. Not sure there's enough to file a suit though.
If the seller's statement of disclosure said there was no HOA it definitely calls for a lawsuit.

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Old 07-15-2017, 12:27 PM   #156
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If the seller's statement of disclosure said there was no HOA it definitely calls for a lawsuit.
Again, for what? Butt hurt is not a cause. Maybe the realtor did not know, because the seller did not inform them. Given the laxity of the HOA as per the OP, maybe the seller forgot. Maybe it didn't comeout that there was a HOA until a title search was done.

You have to have damages for a lawsuit. As of now, the only damages are a little lost time. But again as per the OP, they are continuing to consider this property, hence their own actions are negating any damages. If they buy this property, they would have no claim against the seller or the sellers realtor, and even now their only claim would be for lost time and miscellaneous costs such as a title search. The title company did what they are supposed to, so to have a viable claim in court you would have to prove that the realtor should have known or did knowingly conceal the fact that this property was in a HOA, something that may not be true or proveable.

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Old 07-15-2017, 01:09 PM   #157
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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I would walk away. No chance i'd move into a neighborhood with an HOA.
This. I'm in An hoa and NEVER EVER again. Talk to your attorney and see if you have an out. You should. Unless you're in Arizona then all bets are off.
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Old 07-15-2017, 01:26 PM   #158
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If the seller's statement of disclosure said there was no HOA it definitely calls for a lawsuit.

Tommy
There's a lot of variables in this situation, I'm sure it would be brought up as a miscommunication and both parties will either be happy new buyers/sellers or move on to the next one.

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Again, for what? Butt hurt is not a cause. Maybe the realtor did not know, because the seller did not inform them. Given the laxity of the HOA as per the OP, maybe the seller forgot. Maybe it didn't comeout that there was a HOA until a title search was done.

You have to have damages for a lawsuit. As of now, the only damages are a little lost time. But again as per the OP, they are continuing to consider this property, hence their own actions are negating any damages. If they buy this property, they would have no claim against the seller or the sellers realtor, and even now their only claim would be for lost time and miscellaneous costs such as a title search. The title company did what they are supposed to, so to have a viable claim in court you would have to prove that the realtor should have known or did knowingly conceal the fact that this property was in a HOA, something that may not be true or provable.
I agree
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Old 07-15-2017, 01:34 PM   #159
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Renters have the same rights yet don't have to follow the same guidelines.
.
.
.
Someone please correct me if I'm wrong.
Depends on the state and the CC&Rs.

Most I have seen, the renter has the same requirements as an owner. Fines go to the owner/home, but the renter is 100% responsible for complying with CC&Rs and rules.
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Old 07-15-2017, 03:16 PM   #160
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My in-laws live in an HOA community in AZ that has RV, solar screen and trash can rules in addition to others. One of the RV rules state that you can't store or park your RV onsite or in front of your home. It can only be parked there 24-hrs prior to and after any trip (load/unload time.) One trip I remember, they got home on a Wednesday afternoon/evening so they had Thursday to unload. But, they were leaving again on Saturday, so they could load on Friday. Trailer was in front of the home from Wednesday evening to Saturday morning when they left. Yep, got another letter. They are active RV'ers, at least once a month or more. They keep getting letters from the "HOA Nazis" (my MIL's term) about their trailer.

They got a letter ordering them to replace the window screens because the sun had faded them to a grey color from the original black.

Trash cans-have to be out the morning on pick up and put away, out of sight within 2-hrs of pick up. WHAT? Ok, not to bad for a retired couple but what about a working couple? "Hey, Boss...I have to go home every 2-hrs so I can check to see if the trash has been emptied so I can put the bins away." Yeah, like that will work....

Now, they do like the clean, well maintained houses, landscaping etc. but there are some petty rules with their HOA but at least they can park in the driveway.

Ray
Sounds like enlisting and bitching about PT. It wasn't forced on them
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Old 07-15-2017, 04:44 PM   #161
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

As a current president of a HOA I can say that HOAs are as good or as bad as the board is.
Stupid people act stupid. Common sense is in short supply.
I joined to fix stupidity and rose to president.
All the stupid rules are gone now. ;-)
Typically we let people pretty much do as they please as long as they keep the areas clean and don't do something really stupid.

If you want to fix a HOA you have to get involved and quit whining.
Worked for me.
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Old 07-15-2017, 05:15 PM   #162
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20 years? I would've lit the trailer on fire before then.
Those things go up like a book of matches.
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Old 07-15-2017, 08:30 PM   #163
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Absolutely correct. The post by alexb is full of incorrect information. Furthermore, any management company works for the BOD, who can fire the MC at any time, within contractural limits. The linked Dallas News article is a red herring. Cities and other jurisdictions can also foreclose, and all of this could have been avoided by opening some mail. Too bad, so sad. People need to be responsible for them selves. Too bad they got their house back in court.
Cities can also issue bench warrants if you fail to comply and fail to read your mail.

There is a disturbing trend of lawyers using Management Companies and HOA's as piggy banks. Need to make a little cash, talk to the HOA President and make up some new amendments. The lawyers get paid whether the amendments pass or not. Overall the HOA benefits outweigh the faults, but vigilance is required to keep the HOA on it's toes. As with any form of government, participation makes a difference.
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Old 07-15-2017, 08:32 PM   #164
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Some interesting reads about HOA abuses.

https://www.ccfj.net/
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Old 07-15-2017, 10:44 PM   #165
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I'm in Australia .. I find this HOA stuff is an impost on your own personal space. We have "covenants" in some developments which are totally irrelevant .. The house owners tell the developers to F off . I feel you .. ie .. all american people should stand up against this sort of people control. Its ridiculous and contradicts your right to live "free" .
Part of freedom is the freedom to enter into contracts and freely associate. HOA's allow people the freedom to live in an area with other like minded people free from who would impede that ability. You're always free to live in an area without an HOA.


As for the OP, he has already made decisions that have cost him out of pocket by paying to have work done that he could have done himself.

Personally, I would look into the HOA, talk to them, and see where things stand on the modifications you want to do. There are plenty of reasonable HOAs out there, but also some real nightmares. My HOA can only contract trash pick up, snow plowing, and maintain common areas. There are no covenants regarding architecture, and changes to the scope require 100% of the votes to be in favor. There are good ones out there. My association fees plus trash pick up are actually almost the same as the cost of the trash pick up alone if contracted by an individual. I'm essentially getting the snow removal for free due to the HOA.
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Old 07-15-2017, 11:00 PM   #166
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I don' think you understand what an HOA is.
To begin with, it's not required, and they don't "contradict your right to live free". That said, if you don't want to live by the rules of an HOA, don't move into a neighborhood with an HOA.

Some HOAs charge dues, and use the money to collectively own something, like a swimming pool. Perhaps you pay $50 a month, and you have access to the pool. Other places use the money to do landscaping, roofing, exterior painting, etc. The idea is to find a place you like, with HOA rules that you like - or find a place without an HOA, and live there.

Not everybody wants a neighbor to have a 40 x 60 shop next to their 3 car garage. That's fine, and those people should live next to each other.

As Americans, we all have the freedom to decide to buy into an HOA or not. Don't want one - don't buy a house in a neighborhood with one.

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I'm in Australia .. I find this HOA stuff is an impost on your own personal space. We have "covenants" in some developments which are totally irrelevant .. The house owners tell the developers to F off . I feel you .. ie .. all american people should stand up against this sort of people control. Its ridiculous and contradicts your right to live "free" .
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Old 07-15-2017, 11:32 PM   #167
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Get away from that place!! I lived in a HOA and couldn't get out of it fast enough. A bunch of old ladies get on that board and try to turn the place into their version of Utopia, and not only are you stuck living with the rules of their fantasy dream neighborhood, but you wind up paying for whatever they come up with as well.

The final straw was when we all got notes on our doors from the water company letting us know that the association was way behind on the water bill and our water was being shut off. At the emergency association meeting all the board members could talk about what the Gaul of the water company letting us homeowners know that our association was behind on their bills.

Get the hell away from that place!!!

Chris

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Old 07-15-2017, 11:33 PM   #168
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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I'm with ChaseDE, and live in an extremely tight HoA. Typically the "Board of Directors" and "Architectural Committees" are other homeowners in the neighborhood. As long as your requests are reasonable, and your request is in writing...there should be no issues.

The goals of HoA:
- No wild paint colors
- Clean siding/roof
- Cut grass
- Trash cans in/out on-time
- No cars on jackstands in driveways visible from thoroughfare
I didn't have that same experience, and will never live anywhere with an HOA again. I got a nasty letter from the HOA one year saying I was violating some obscure rule, and cited fines, legal fees, etc, so I read through the covenants and couldn't find any such restriction. It took half a dozen phone calls, and contentious e-mails before they said what I was doing was "discouraged" even though there was no mention of it in the covenants. I pointed out that at least half a dozen of my neighbors were doing the same thing, and had been for years.

Claiming that HOAs are normally reasonable is a joke. Yours might be now...but that can change and there's nothing you can do about it.
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Old 07-16-2017, 12:22 AM   #169
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I suspect many of the people here complaining about their HOA's are also the same ones complaining about being "forced" to shop at Walmart and Harbor Freight.

Don't like living under the rules of an HOA?
Don't like Walmart wages?
Don't like the smell of HF?
Vote with your feet, not your mouth. We are blessed to live in a country where you aren't told where to live or where to shop.

The OP has enough information to make an informed decision; I'm looking forward to his update.
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Old 07-16-2017, 12:33 AM   #170
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I suspect many of the people here complaining about their HOA's are also the same ones complaining about being "forced" to shop at Walmart and Harbor Freight.
The problem in my area if you want a new house or one built since about 1995 is you don't have any choice about having either an HOA or deed restrictions and covenants. I looked far and wide in 2014 and only found four lots without restrictions. Three of the four lots were too wet to build. The fourth was buildable, but didn't work out.

My co-worker lived in a condo which of course has an HOA. The HOA decided that the building needed new windows so they assessed every unit $8,000. He had the $8,000, but what if you didn't?
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Old 07-16-2017, 01:03 AM   #171
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The problem in my area if you want a new house or one built since about 1995 is you don't have any choice about having either an HOA or deed restrictions and covenants. I looked far and wide in 2014 and only found four lots without restrictions. Three of the four lots were too wet to build. The fourth was buildable, but didn't work out.

My co-worker lived in a condo which of course has an HOA. The HOA decided that the building needed new windows so they assessed every unit $8,000. He had the $8,000, but what if you didn't?
If everything being built since 1995 has an HOA/CCR's there must be a very high demand for these types of developments. You're probably going to have to modify your search criteria to suit what is available in your target community- probably an older home, older development, or a different area. It's unrealistic to think you're going to be able to find a new house that isn't in an HOA if you are limiting your search to areas where that is all that is being built. Besides, all your potential new neighbors have already agreed that they don't want to live next door to the unregulated property you seek.

The HOA Board is elected by the homeowners to represent their best interests. If the majority don't like what they are doing, they have to freedom to vote them out. If your friend isn't comfortable with delegating major building maintenance decisions to a duly elected HOA Board, he bought into the wrong condominium complex. If he doesn't like the way the current board is functioning he can always stand for election and effect change from the inside.
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Old 07-16-2017, 01:21 AM   #172
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Again, for what? Butt hurt is not a cause. Maybe the realtor did not know, because the seller did not inform them. Given the laxity of the HOA as per the OP, maybe the seller forgot. Maybe it didn't comeout that there was a HOA until a title search was done.

You have to have damages for a lawsuit. As of now, the only damages are a little lost time. But again as per the OP, they are continuing to consider this property, hence their own actions are negating any damages. If they buy this property, they would have no claim against the seller or the sellers realtor, and even now their only claim would be for lost time and miscellaneous costs such as a title search. The title company did what they are supposed to, so to have a viable claim in court you would have to prove that the realtor should have known or did knowingly conceal the fact that this property was in a HOA, something that may not be true or proveable.
If they don't buy the property, he is out the $15k that he paid for work to be done that he could do himself. Obviously, if they buy the house, it would change things. As it stands though, why wouldn't those expenses constitute damages?
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Old 07-16-2017, 01:34 AM   #173
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If they don't buy the property, he is out the $15k that he paid for work to be done that he could do himself. Obviously, if they buy the house, it would change things. As it stands though, why wouldn't those expenses constitute damages?
These are two legally unrelated transactions.
The seller didn't make the decision to hire subcontractors to work on his existing home; he did.
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Old 07-16-2017, 02:02 AM   #174
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These are two legally unrelated transactions.
The seller didn't make the decision to hire subcontractors to work on his existing home; he did.
But he made that decision based on the information provided (or am I mistaken in that regard?) by the homeowner or his agent in the contract to purchase they both signed. They misrepresented the home and OP made those transactions based on the contract they signed.
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Old 07-16-2017, 08:11 AM   #175
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Again, for what? Butt hurt is not a cause. Maybe the realtor did not know, because the seller did not inform them. Given the laxity of the HOA as per the OP, maybe the seller forgot. Maybe it didn't comeout that there was a HOA until a title search was done.

You have to have damages for a lawsuit. As of now, the only damages are a little lost time. But again as per the OP, they are continuing to consider this property, hence their own actions are negating any damages. If they buy this property, they would have no claim against the seller or the sellers realtor, and even now their only claim would be for lost time and miscellaneous costs such as a title search. The title company did what they are supposed to, so to have a viable claim in court you would have to prove that the realtor should have known or did knowingly conceal the fact that this property was in a HOA, something that may not be true or proveable.

I already said they could only go after the realtor if they could prove the realtor listed as "no HOA" knowing there actually was one, which is obviously very hard to do. Still, if the Real Estate agent was any good, they would have known the development. Also, the buyer's Real Estate lawyer should have done due diligence and the home inspection background investigation should have borne it out. It should have never even gotten CLOSE to a closing, let alone a deposit.

We have already established the sellers Property Disclosure Statement was falsified. There's your suit. Normally those suits are for undisclosed damage, or problems with the property itself and are designed to get the seller to rectify or fund the needed corrections.

This case is a little different as there is nothing the seller can do to change the problem, so if the buyer opts out the damages are, at a minimum, his loss of time, court and lawyer costs. He might ask to collect lost interest on the deposit money. A good lawyer MIGHT be able to convince the judge the buyer indeed lost money for the wok done on his house that he would have done himself if he didn't have a time issue. That one is very iffy.

Even if no damages are determined, there is generally a penalty the seller pays when found guilty of falsifying a Property Disclosure Statement. I've seen it happen.

I know the OP is still considering the purchase. He is his own man, only he can determine what is best for himself. The fact that the homeowner lied on the Disclosure about something as blatant as saying there was no HOA, I wouldn't trust him about the condition of the house at all. I'd walk away right there.

Tommy
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Old 07-16-2017, 08:57 AM   #176
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My co-worker lived in a condo which of course has an HOA. The HOA decided that the building needed new windows so they assessed every unit $8,000. He had the $8,000, but what if you didn't?

Stop lumping condos in with single family building and land with HOA that are owned by the individual.

Condos have commonly owned parts like the land, windows, outside walls and roof......they must be maintained by the association. So the association ( HOA) is responsible for funding those repairs and or maintenance. They either collect money each month and fund those long term items or maintenance or special assessment. If you don't have the money you take out loan just like if your roof on your house leaks and you don't have the money. In condo you don't have the option to delay or do half ass temp fix.

The opposite problem the condo does not do needed maintenance or repairs and the condo units become unsellable do to run down conditions.
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Old 07-16-2017, 09:09 AM   #177
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If everything being built since 1995 has an HOA/CCR's there must be a very high demand for these types of developments. You're probably going to have to modify your search criteria to suit what is available in your target community- probably an older home, older development, or a different area. It's unrealistic to think you're going to be able to find a new house that isn't in an HOA if you are limiting your search to areas where that is all that is being built. Besides, all your potential new neighbors have already agreed that they don't want to live next door to the unregulated property you seek.
I guess my only option if I want new is to move to a rural area. I already live on the edge of a metro area in a semi rural city that has no city water or sewer. The minimum lot size is 1 acre. There are quite a few new developments being built, but they all have restrictions of some sort. The reason I chose this city is because of the ability to build up to 3,000 square foot garage.

I ended up with an existing home in part to get away from deed restrictions and covenants. Unfortunately, I cannot build a garage here now because a year after I moved in FEMA redrew the flood maps and the parts of the property where I could build a garage are in a flood zone now.
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Old 07-16-2017, 09:15 AM   #178
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Condos have commonly owned parts like the land, windows, outside walls and roof......they must be maintained by the association. So the association ( HOA) is responsible for funding those repairs and or maintenance. They either collect money each month and fund those long term items or maintenance or special assessment. If you don't have the money you take out loan just like if your roof on your house leaks and you don't have the money. In condo you don't have the option to delay or do half ass temp fix.
What happens when you are the edge financially and can't get a loan to pay the assessment? I guess you sell or let the association foreclose.

In a house you can wait to replace deteriorated windows if you don't have the money although it might be more costly long term. The house I bought had tons of deferred maintenance which resulted in my spending over $70,000 to fix all the issues.

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Old 07-16-2017, 09:54 AM   #179
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If they don't buy the property, he is out the $15k that he paid for work to be done that he could do himself. Obviously, if they buy the house, it would change things. As it stands though, why wouldn't those expenses constitute damages?
I had to go back and read the first post again to see just what in the heck you are talking about. My response is as follows:

Because those were expenses he spent on his own house. His house has nothing to do with this seperate real estate transaction, his choices are his own, as is his "rushed" timeline.
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Old 07-16-2017, 10:06 AM   #180
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Stop lumping condos in with single family building and land with HOA that are owned by the individual.

Condos have commonly owned parts like the land, windows, outside walls and roof......they must be maintained by the association. So the association ( HOA) is responsible for funding those repairs and or maintenance. They either collect money each month and fund those long term items or maintenance or special assessment. If you don't have the money you take out loan just like if your roof on your house leaks and you don't have the money. In condo you don't have the option to delay or do half ass temp fix.

The opposite problem the condo does not do needed maintenance or repairs and the condo units become unsellable do to run down conditions.
You're only partially correct that it is unfair to lump HOAs and COAs together. Depending on the HOA, it is not uncommon for HOA members to get hit with a rather healthy assessment if the BOD has not been Johnnie on the Spot in collecting reserve funds. There are HOA's that own extensive road, member service, septic and sewage systems. If a HOA's road or sewage system goes under, "you don't have the option to delay or do half ass temp fix".

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Old 07-16-2017, 10:11 AM   #181
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Claiming that HOAs are normally reasonable is a joke. Yours might be now...but that can change and there's nothing you can do about it.
You can't get involved with your local HOA governance? Is it some kind of aristocracy that you have to be born into like medievel Europe? I thought that if a individual didn't like their HOA they were free to gather up votes and run for the BOD.

Silly me.
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Old 07-16-2017, 10:23 AM   #182
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You can't get involved with your local HOA governance? Is it some kind of aristocracy that you have to be born into like medievel Europe? I thought that if a individual didn't like their HOA they were free to gather up votes and run for the BOD.

Silly me.
Unless you in the Clique, you don't stand a chance of being elected.

Chris
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Old 07-16-2017, 10:26 AM   #183
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Unless you in the Clique, you don't stand a chance of being elected.

Chris
Normally there is a large body of defeatests and the apathetic to tap into. But your post is self explanatory
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Old 07-16-2017, 10:33 AM   #184
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Normally there is a large body of defeatests and the apathetic to tap into. But your post is self explanatory
I take it you never lived in one. Oh wait I see you were the President of one. Were you in the clique??

Chris

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Old 07-16-2017, 10:35 AM   #185
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I take it you never lived in one.

Chris
No, I served on a board.

And you?
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Old 07-16-2017, 10:36 AM   #186
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We have already established the sellers Property Disclosure Statement was falsified. There's your suit. Normally those suits are for undisclosed damage, or problems with the property itself and are designed to get the seller to rectify or fund the needed corrections.
Those suits occur after the sale has become finalized, after the true condition of the property becomes clear. None of that is applicable here.

I've stated that he does appear to have some possible damages, although minor. No court in the world would entertain his work on his own house as damages.

And the more he entertains this new house, the less he is damaged specifically because of the disclosure we are discussing. As time goes on, and the sale is further discussed, the HOA issue goes from being a flat out disqualifying issue to one akin to the bathroom color. And it takes potential for damages with it.
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Old 07-16-2017, 10:44 AM   #187
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

Almost every development has some type of HOA ... most have a common area to maintain -- others have to pay for snow/ trash pickup. Many mid size developments own the roads and drainage pipes.

Sounds like the OP got a lawyer involved -- hopefully a RE lawyer. Some transactions need a review so your don't get any surprises.

Personally -- I would never buy in a questionable area without strong town rules or an HOA. I see in with our weekend place out in PA .. some areas have almost no rules ..... same with many of the older developments. It does not take many people to screw up an area .. and the corresponding value.

The HOA's to be carefully of are those in newer tightly build retirement communities -- most are extremely strict and allow very few changes.
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Old 07-16-2017, 10:47 AM   #188
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No, I served on a board.

And you?
I noticed you were the president and updated my previous post to ask if you were in the Clique!

My experience in my HOA was hell and we couldn't get out of the place fast enough! My wife bought into the place before were were married and had nothing but problems, several required lawyers(thankfully she won). Once we got married, the for sale sign went up and we sold at a loss just to get away from that hell hole. Mine, was mostly old retired people and unless you were in the old lady Clique, you stood no chance of getting elected to anything. If you are a young person and want to run, good luck getting a bunch of old ladys to vote for you. (I was in my late 20s when we lived there)

Ever since that experience, I have a policy that I don't tell my neighbors how to live (as long as its legal) and I expect the same from them. I also bought in to the best non HOA neighborhood I could.

Chris

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Old 07-16-2017, 10:55 AM   #189
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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You can't get involved with your local HOA governance? Is it some kind of aristocracy that you have to be born into like medievel Europe? I thought that if a individual didn't like their HOA they were free to gather up votes and run for the BOD.

Silly me.
Yes, silly you for making assumptions.

My wife was on the BOD of the last HOA we lived in. It was a total mess and the people on the BOD were largely idiots. Luckily we moved, so she didn't have to deal with them for long. Oh, but she DID see selective enforcement and bias.

My wife's one vote wasn't going to change anything those folks were doing.
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Old 07-16-2017, 10:57 AM   #190
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I noticed you were the president and updated my previous post to ask if you were in the Clique!
That was another poster. I was a board member, and we had a President conduct a purge of all board members she didn't like. That lasted all of one-week, then we had a special election and threw her and her primary crony out onto their ass and we all lived happily ever after, except her crony, who died. And her, who moved away.

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Old 07-16-2017, 11:05 AM   #191
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That was another poster. I was a board member, and we had a President conduct a purge of all board members she didn't like. That lasted all of one-week, then we had a special election and threw her and her primary crony out onto their ass and we all lived happily ever after, except her crony, who died. And her, who moved away.
I'm glad your experience was better than mine.

I should probably stay away from HOA threads. I haven't lived in one in decades, and I still have strong negative emotions about that place.

Peace!

Chris
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Old 07-16-2017, 11:06 AM   #192
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

I was cured of ever living with an HOA by two of our friends. One had HOA rules that said one could not park in their driveway. One could only use the driveway to get from the street into the garage or vice-versa. If guest came by, in a car(s), there was a vacant field a couple blocks away for their cars.

The other friend had big trouble when she redecorated her living room. The HOA did not like the color of her new drapes, visible through a couple her windows. Not wild colors, I believe they were a medium green. She fought it, she lost.
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Old 07-16-2017, 11:15 AM   #193
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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Unless you in the Clique, you don't stand a chance of being elected.

Chris
I did it. I won. I moved up the ranks.
I got rid of stupid rules.
So I'm saying you can win and make a difference.
Don't whine. Get involved.
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Old 07-16-2017, 11:19 AM   #194
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Default Re: Closing on a house with no HOA...wait there is an HOA....

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I was cured of ever living with an HOA by two of our friends. One had HOA rules that said one could not park in their driveway. One could only use the driveway to get from the street into the garage or vice-versa. If guest came by, in a car(s), there was a vacant field a couple blocks away for their cars.

The other friend had big trouble when she redecorated her living room. The HOA did not like the color of her new drapes, visible through a couple her windows. Not wild colors, I believe they were a medium green. She fought it, she lost.
I'm the president of an HOA and would NEVER live in either of those HOAs. Sounds like your friends were ignorant when they shopped and reviewed their documents, eh?


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Old 07-16-2017, 11:21 AM   #195