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Are you apart of an HOA (Home Owner's Association)? Have you ever received a "courtesy" notice from it?”

5 replies so far...

  • I'm lucky that we don't have a HOA in my neighborhood so I've never gotten a letter like that. However, my parents live in a neighborhood that has a HOA and when one person is in violation of a rule, everyone gets a generic letter about it. One of their rules is that cars are not to be parked on the street overnight. This rule has been violated many times and whenever "they" decide it is getting out of hand they send a letter addressed, "Dear Neighborhood Resident" something describing the problem and a reminder of the neighborhood rules then it is signed The Homeowner's Association.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Jenni on 24th March 2008

  • We received a notice in error last year that was meant to go to the family 2 houses down for their "playground equipment violation." It was pretty annoying for us, but easily cleared up as they had just sent to the wrong email address. But, I was disappointed to find out that the person who complained about the equipment being too large for the backyard was only doing so because his teenage son had hit this family's parked car and they made him pay the damages. So he basically was just complaining because of this personal crap, or maybe because he hates to see children playing? Either way, it was pretty ridiculous.

    The unfortunate thing about many HOAs is that they are typically run by the older folks in the neighborhood who don't have kids and have time on their hands to worry about things that shouldn't really matter that much, so they often aren't very family friendly.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by BrendaG on 24th March 2008

  • I guess I have some sympathy for HOA's, in part b/c I've served on the board of our townhouse development's assn. I do sympathize with the "fiefdom/dicatorship" stories I see here, too. Yikes; that really stinks. Nobody likes getting those letters. The times letters have been sent out to residents where I live are when they break the assn rules or compromise safety. There is also something in the docs about the "aesthetics" in the place, which prevents people from doing things like painting their units crazy colors or whatever. It's really unfortunate the kind of cr*p that people dump on our board, who are not paid and have to make do with limited funds. E.g. people don't realize how much the snow removal contract really adds up, but God forbid we get a dusting and no one's there at 5 am to remove it. Or if they are, then that's too early and wakes people up. Ya can't win. And people forget that there are ongoing major capital expenses b/c like it or not, housing ages: roofs have to be replaced, asphalt has to be relaid. I got off the board b/c I couldn't take it anymore. Surprise surprise: getting people to serve on our board is like pulling teeth; nobody wants to do it. Anyway, enuf kvetching; back to the letters: I do feel that if letters must be sent to residents, they better be backed up by whatever the assn rules say. - Paula.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by tkd_mama on 24th March 2008

  • We lived in a towhouse for 22 years before we moved to an unattached home. Therefore, we had to deal with a HOA. The first half of those 22 were pretty good. However, the last 4-5 years that we lived there were a total nightmare. HOA are only as good or bad as those who make up the board. And there are those who do so that run it as their own fifedoms. I received a so-called "courtsey letter" when I had my daughter's Sesame Street playhouse out on our OWN back yard (we owned the property in front and back of our townhouse). They said I couldn't leave it out there. Since the community playground was quite a distance away AND had been built next to the main road (some really brillant planning there - NOT), I refused and left it. When the president showed up and told me I had to move it, I looked at him and told him to move the playground to a safer place and I would. Since it was on MY property, it would stay there until they moved theirs. Now, I also knew that my HOA wasn't about to get into a pissing match with a mother over something that was NOT on common property and that would be likely gone withing a year or so anyway. Needless to say, they left me alone.

    When we were moving out was the worst, tho. The president was a total and absolute jerk and made it very difficult for us to move out of our own house. I loved our townhouse, but the HOA had become a dictatorship. And don't even get me started on the fees and how they were appropriated. My husband ran for the board the last year or so we were there, but got beat out by 2 old biddies who had nothing else to do with their time but get in everybody else's business.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by JKLD on 23rd March 2008

  • Okay ... this question stems from (recent) personal experience. My husband and I received a "courtesy" notice today requesting that we mow our grass. My temper flared immediately because it's been freak'n WINTER and the grass hasn't grown. I was just about to call the HOA and politely inquire when after the winter should the grass be mown and how many inches above baseline BROWN grass should be my measure as to when mow the lawn, when my hubby stopped me and told me that it wasn't worth it and that I'd only create more problems for myself. The final irritation is that the letter was address "Dear So and So' but then signed "The HOA Group." A bit cowardly ...

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by KC on 22nd March 2008