Is this normal for an HOA?

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Info_Hound
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Location: Fort Collins, Colorado

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by Info_Hound » Wed Dec 05, 2018 12:51 pm

jimmo wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 9:44 am
Name and emergency contact information is reasonable. The rest of it I'd view as none of their business. Comply with what you feel is reasonable and leave the rest blank. The onus is on the HOA to follow-up if they still want more information and can justify it.

I'm in an HOA neighborhood and they've asked me for nothing (besides a check once a year) and I've provided nothing more than what transferred at the time of my home purchase.
+1
I live in a small (116 house) HOA single family neighborhood, no pool or recreation facilities, just a bill for mowing some grass strips and watering them in the summer. None of the info the OP was requested has been asked for by my HOA. In fact I would consider it an invasion of privacy if asked with no context as to its need or use. The ownership information is available on the county's real estate tax and assessment web site. HOA's are not going to call you at work to tell you your house is on fire or that your front door was kicked in. More likely it will be a neighbor.

In this county any new neighborhood development mandates (by the county government) that an HOA be established so the county does not get stuck with common property maintenance. Beyond the fact that the HOA makes the homeowners take care of common grounds, any other 'rules' are allowed as the HOA sees fit to enact. Here it's very hard to not buy into a community that doesn't have an HOA in some form, I tried.

texasdiver
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by texasdiver » Wed Dec 05, 2018 1:11 pm

This is not normal in my experience.

I'm in my 3rd HOA and none of them have asked for anything more than basic contact information. The current one has a management company with a web site that you use to log into in order to set up your account for auto-pay of monthly fees, just like any utility. So that is convenient. I remember filling out basic contact information online but nothing about pets or kids or anthing like that.

I think I actually filled out some of these forms in the past during the closing on the house along with the other giant stack of closing documents at the title company.

If it were me, I'd just fill out the information you think they are entitled to know (basic contact information), leave the rest blank, and send it in.

Nowizard
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by Nowizard » Wed Dec 05, 2018 3:10 pm

Your HOA guidelines you received when you purchased will answer this question.

Tim

DetroitRick
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by DetroitRick » Wed Dec 05, 2018 3:13 pm

SevenBridgesRoad wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 10:06 am
DetroitRick wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 9:28 am
SevenBridgesRoad wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 12:54 am
SoAnyway wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 12:44 am
DetroitRick wrote:
Tue Dec 04, 2018 5:53 pm
As will satisfy most bureaucrats, I filled out entire form neatly and completely. But only the relevant, needed info was accurate.....Even though we're a small association (79 units), nobody questioned my Lambo or my wife's DeLorean.
Priceless, DetroitRick! (and thanks for the belly laugh you just provided me)

OP, I don't know that I'd have the stones or willingness to spend the time to do what DetroitRick did, but I do admire it. Personally, like others upthread, I'd just ignore the request.
What a bunch of sissy complainers. Have “the stones” to ‘spend the time’ and actually get involved with the HOA. The board are neighbors not bureaucrats. Have the stones to step up, man.
Just to clarify, I have served on the board as president, definitely not a sissy (seriously?), never complained (I'm answering the OP's question, isn't that the purpose of this board, or should I check in with you first?) - but rather just got this "done". This form took all of 60 seconds to complete anyway. Some boards are very bureaucratic (ours is a mix), most of us have seen examples, and that comment was mostly directed toward the management company anyway (clerks with forms). I learned long ago that blanks on a form will often generate further interaction, but completely filled out forms seldom do. Too bad, but tough. It works. My goal was simply to get them the info they needed, call them off on the rest, and move on.
Hey Rick, I withdraw the sissy complainer card. You have served on the HOA board. My comment was out of line. Please accept my apology.

Our HOA had swung to the bureaucratic, control-freak side, as suggested by other contributors here. Three of us homeowners decided we needed to step up, volunteer, get elected and help swing things back to being reasonable neighbors. We as new board members had the votes and made changes, including changing management companies as they were part of the problem.

As Jerry Garcia who said, “Somebody has to do something, and it’s just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us.” Reasonable people need to get involved.
Thanks, no problemo. And thanks for that Jerry Garcia quote. Actually I could have really used that when I was on the board, but it will definitely come in handy. A really good one. :sharebeer

worthit
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by worthit » Wed Dec 05, 2018 4:04 pm

Our HOA does require us to provide them information about the occupants annually. As I understand, they collect it to make sure they have all the critical information needed should something happen to the dwelling (fire), or should they need to share information to law enforcement immediately as a result of the occupants unable to respond. The information about the cars (color, make, model etc) I believe is to prohibit unwanted and unwelcome guests driving by and using our parking lots by the pool/tennis court etc. We have also had some burglary happen in the neighborhood. So they are keeping a close watch. But frankly, I don't feel like sharing but to an extent understand where they are coming from.

6Pack
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Location: Rural Maryland

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by 6Pack » Wed Dec 05, 2018 7:37 pm

In my experience, this is not usual information. An HOA can only restrict the outward house, not its inner workings. In other words, they can’t say unmarried people can’t live together, multi-race families are prohibited (which is where HOAs actually have their roots), etc...

I would tell them you aren’t providing the information. I’d like to know what their recourse is for failing to provide the information. In Maryland we have the Contract Lien Act, but I doubt that would apply if the HOA bylaws and amendments don’t specify this information.

This is also why I avoid HOAs properties like the plague (except taking them on as clients).

iamlucky13
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by iamlucky13 » Thu Dec 06, 2018 1:48 am

SevenBridgesRoad wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 12:54 am
The board are neighbors not bureaucrats.
Those are not mutually exclusive. But regarding your other point about staying involved, at least by occasionally attending meetings, I do agree that would be worthwhile for anyone who wants to ensure their HOA stays on a path acceptable to them.
OnTrack2020 wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 8:36 am
goodlifer wrote:
Tue Dec 04, 2018 4:08 pm
Unless the covenants have been changed and no one was informed
Regarding the bolded above, how would they be able to contact you if they don't have your information?
....
For liability reasons, if nothing other, maybe their insurance is requesting it.
Contacting them at their address would be one option.

If they have a legitimate reason for asking for any of that information, it would have been appropriate and helpful to have stated those reasons, preferably while clarifying where their authority is established to make any of the requested disclosures mandatory.
Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 7:21 am
Everyone has a choice. You can live in a commune and let the almighty HOA make decisions for you and the rest of the sheep or you can actually be free, like an American and live where there is no HOA.
This is increasingly becoming a problem because it seems a high and ever-growing percentage of homes in many regions are encumbered by HOA's. There is not necessarily choice in practical terms.

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8foot7
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by 8foot7 » Thu Dec 06, 2018 6:13 am

iamlucky13 wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 1:48 am

OnTrack2020 wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 8:36 am
goodlifer wrote:
Tue Dec 04, 2018 4:08 pm
Unless the covenants have been changed and no one was informed
Regarding the bolded above, how would they be able to contact you if they don't have your information?
....
For liability reasons, if nothing other, maybe their insurance is requesting it.
Contacting them at their address would be one option.

We also seem to be ignoring the fact the HOA sent him this form already along with his dues bill so they obviously already have his information

goodlifer
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by goodlifer » Thu Dec 06, 2018 2:52 pm

Thank you all for the advice. Just to clarify some things: there are no condos or town homes in our HOA. There is no assigned parking. I would guess that 90% of the homes have at least 3 car garages. There are very few that have 2 car spots. I would also guess that I have the junkiest car in the subdivision considering it is a few years old and not a luxury vehicle. We don't have city stickers or any registration outside of the state license plate sticker, so they wouldn't need to check our cars. I am a woman :happy . It did not specifically ask for all emails but wanted our home, work, and alternate emails along with an emergency contact email, which happens to be all the email addresses we have. Even I don't get to email my husband at work, so they will not be getting that. The HOA does not have a directory. We had one years ago and people complained about a sudden surge of prank phone calls soon after its release, so now we can't have nice things. There isn't a rule against renting or how many people can be in the home (except for city laws), but homes are very rarely rented here. I have never seen a "For Rent" sign and all the data I looked up suggests that there was one rental in 2013. We do have a pool, but it is separate from the HOA. We have to buy a membership plus additional yearly fees and we don't have to live in the HOA to buy the membership.

The only state laws I could find regarding personal information say that in 2017, a law passed that required the HOA to show a voter's name, address, email, and how we voted, if asked. I would think this would be an invasion of privacy but it is required, so there isn't much I can do. We have to write all of that information on the proxy vote anyway, so they already have it.

To reiterate, nothing I signed when I moved in said anything about this. We moved in 10 years ago and the covenants consisted of a few pages. Our last update was in 2015 and did not cover something that passed in 2017, obviously. If it said that I had to release so much personal information and make the HOA a beneficiary to my homeowners insurance, I would not have moved here. Yes, I do realize that I live in an HOA and have to abide by the rules, which is why I specifically asked if this was normal for an HOA and not if I had to abide by the rules.

The Board uses their personal email addresses and phones. The last time I contacted a board member via email, her computer became infected a month later and I had pages of spam emails every day. It is part of the reason why I am hesitant to give them any information. I don't have a problem with giving information that they need for a certain reason. They already have my email, phone #, and obviously my address. The club house requires a copy of our homeowners insurance when we rent it out in case someone gets hurt, so they technically already have that info. I don't know if they keep it on file or not. The pool knows my daughter's DOB because they only allow kids 13 and up to enter without a parent. If my daughter signed up for the community job board, she would have to give her DOB so someone didn't accidentally hire a 10 year old to babysit. But since the pool is separate and she isn't on the job board, they have no need to know her DOB. I'm going to have trouble coming up with an emergency contact. My family does not want their information given out. My husband's family travels often.

I was busy with appointments most of yesterday so my husband was supposed to call and ask about this, which he didn't do. If he doesn't bother to do it today, I think I will just fill in the information they already have on file and be done with it. Thanks again!

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goingup
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by goingup » Thu Dec 06, 2018 3:09 pm

I have been thinking about the HOA's request to you. It seems intrusive and bureaucratic. I had a thought that maybe this was paternalism with good intentions. The recent wildfires in Northern California ravaged communities so quickly that it's taken a long time to even figure out who is missing.

Maybe your HOA is just working on a disaster preparedness scenario. In which case, lots of contact information is helpful. It's an angle to consider, especially if you live in an area prone to natural disasters.

ResearchMed
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by ResearchMed » Thu Dec 06, 2018 3:50 pm

goodlifer wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 2:52 pm

<snip>

The only state laws I could find regarding personal information say that in 2017, a law passed that required the HOA to show a voter's name, address, email, and how we voted, if asked. I would think this would be an invasion of privacy but it is required, so there isn't much I can do. We have to write all of that information on the proxy vote anyway, so they already have it.

<snip>
HOW you voted? A *state* law that requires you to disclose to the HOA (or to *anyone*) HOW you voted?
Is there some other way to interpret "how you voted" other than meaning to disclose the actual choices on the ballot?

And then for the HOA somehow to SHOW (display? where?) this information about members' voting choices?

:shock:

Can this really be accurate?

RM
This signature is a placebo. You are in the control group.

michaeljc70
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by michaeljc70 » Thu Dec 06, 2018 3:53 pm

goingup wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 3:09 pm
I have been thinking about the HOA's request to you. It seems intrusive and bureaucratic. I had a thought that maybe this was paternalism with good intentions. The recent wildfires in Northern California ravaged communities so quickly that it's taken a long time to even figure out who is missing.

Maybe your HOA is just working on a disaster preparedness scenario. In which case, lots of contact information is helpful. It's an angle to consider, especially if you live in an area prone to natural disasters.

The rules can be intrusive and bureaucratic. It is best to avoid an HOA, accept how they are or be involved in it to counteract that. In our HOA, we cannot have any work done on weekends or after 6pm. It is a silly rule. I cannot have a painter on a Saturday? Or a painter working at 7pm? It is crazy, but these are humans passing rules trying to take a worse case scenario into account (someone jack hammering on a Saturday morning or something). I really don't think the information they are asking for is top secret. They can get your plate and vehicle info by watching you drive home. Are you sure there are no limitations on renting? People can AirBNB their home out for a night? That might be why they want to know the occupants.

My Uncle lived in an SFH HOA community in Atlanta. To paint his house he had paint a 6x6 foot sample on the side of the house for the board to approve. They rejected several colors (none were crazy). They wanted the colors to complement, yet not duplicate neighbors colors. He also, as a hobby, made stained glass. He hung a stained glass piece in his front window (not replacing a window) and was told it was against the rules.

goodlifer
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by goodlifer » Thu Dec 06, 2018 4:17 pm

ResearchMed wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 3:50 pm
goodlifer wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 2:52 pm

<snip>

The only state laws I could find regarding personal information say that in 2017, a law passed that required the HOA to show a voter's name, address, email, and how we voted, if asked. I would think this would be an invasion of privacy but it is required, so there isn't much I can do. We have to write all of that information on the proxy vote anyway, so they already have it.

<snip>
HOW you voted? A *state* law that requires you to disclose to the HOA (or to *anyone*) HOW you voted?
Is there some other way to interpret "how you voted" other than meaning to disclose the actual choices on the ballot?

And then for the HOA somehow to SHOW (display? where?) this information about members' voting choices?

:shock:

Can this really be accurate?

RM
I found a post about someone complaining about the ability of neighbors looking up the poster's name and vote, so I googled and found this from Sect 19, cut to paragraph seven since the rest is about keeping other records:

"Sec. 19. Records of the association; availability for examination.
(a) The board of managers of every association shall keep and maintain the following records, or true and complete copies of these records, at the association's principal office:

(7) a current listing of the names, addresses, email

addresses, telephone numbers, and weighted vote of all members entitled to vote;
(8) ballots and proxies related to ballots for all

matters voted on by the members of the association during the immediately preceding 12 months, including, but not limited to, the election of members of the board of managers; and
(9) the books and records for the association's

current and 10 immediately preceding fiscal years, including, but not limited to, itemized and detailed records of all receipts, expenditures, and accounts."

It states that members must submit the request in writing, and not use the information for commercial purposes. Any association member can request the information "for a purpose that relates to the association". I read it to mean that if my neighbor asked me if I voted for her and I said yes, she could request my voting information to find out that I did not vote for her and never speak to me again. Am I assuming correctly? TBH, I'm not up on legalese and I'm on pain medication, so I'm a little fuzzy.

wilked
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by wilked » Thu Dec 06, 2018 4:51 pm

If anyone thinks in the case of a fire that someone is going to run to the office, open files, figure out how many people were written on the paper, run back to the firefighters and then tell them 3 people are on the paper so get someone back in the burning building until 3 people are found.... you are not facing reality

People are contorting themselves trying to find ways to justify collecting all this private info.

michaeljc70
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by michaeljc70 » Thu Dec 06, 2018 5:10 pm

wilked wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 4:51 pm
If anyone thinks in the case of a fire that someone is going to run to the office, open files, figure out how many people were written on the paper, run back to the firefighters and then tell them 3 people are on the paper so get someone back in the burning building until 3 people are found.... you are not facing reality

People are contorting themselves trying to find ways to justify collecting all this private info.
They don't need to justify it. They can pass any rules they want within the confines of the covenant, declarations and state law. You elect a board. They make rules. You don't like them, elect a new board. If it is the mgmt company, complain to board members. Most people don't want to bother being involved. They just want to complain.

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8foot7
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by 8foot7 » Thu Dec 06, 2018 5:16 pm

michaeljc70 wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 5:10 pm
wilked wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 4:51 pm
If anyone thinks in the case of a fire that someone is going to run to the office, open files, figure out how many people were written on the paper, run back to the firefighters and then tell them 3 people are on the paper so get someone back in the burning building until 3 people are found.... you are not facing reality

People are contorting themselves trying to find ways to justify collecting all this private info.
They don't need to justify it. They can pass any rules they want within the confines of the covenant, declarations and state law. You elect a board. They make rules. You don't like them, elect a new board. If it is the mgmt company, complain to board members. Most people don't want to bother being involved. They just want to complain.
I think the point is that there is no evidence that there is any rule that allows them to collect this information or any rule that mandates the homeowner provide the info. Most likely this is a form designer gone wild and there is no actual authority to either ask for the information or to mandate that the information be supplied.

alex_686
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by alex_686 » Thu Dec 06, 2018 5:18 pm

wilked wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 4:51 pm
People are contorting themselves trying to find ways to justify collecting all this private info.
I will modestly take the other side. I am on my condo board and we have a couple of issues each year involving gas lines (some units still have stoves with pilot lights), clogged sewer lines, and water damage from neighboring units.

And while this does not fall into the OP's situation, I doubt that state law would be nuanced enough when it comes to shared walls or shared sewer lines.

FYI, in my state the board has a wide latitude in collecting this information. We would not need to modify the by-laws, just pass a board resolution.

michaeljc70
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by michaeljc70 » Thu Dec 06, 2018 6:36 pm

8foot7 wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 5:16 pm
michaeljc70 wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 5:10 pm
wilked wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 4:51 pm
If anyone thinks in the case of a fire that someone is going to run to the office, open files, figure out how many people were written on the paper, run back to the firefighters and then tell them 3 people are on the paper so get someone back in the burning building until 3 people are found.... you are not facing reality

People are contorting themselves trying to find ways to justify collecting all this private info.
They don't need to justify it. They can pass any rules they want within the confines of the covenant, declarations and state law. You elect a board. They make rules. You don't like them, elect a new board. If it is the mgmt company, complain to board members. Most people don't want to bother being involved. They just want to complain.
I think the point is that there is no evidence that there is any rule that allows them to collect this information or any rule that mandates the homeowner provide the info. Most likely this is a form designer gone wild and there is no actual authority to either ask for the information or to mandate that the information be supplied.
The OP said she only saw 3 pages. I've never seen a declaration/covenant of only 3 pages. Then there are rules. There are meeting minutes, though those aren't binding rules. For my association of townhomes, there are probably over 50 pages. They break out who gets how much of a vote. This is typically based on sq ft in a townhome or condo, but can vary. That alone takes pages. The legalese involved takes pages. The rules don't specify every specific piece of information they can ask you for. They don't detail every minutia. That is a management discretion issue most likely. Again, I don't see it as a big issue. If they asked for your SSN and you could get into an identity theft situation, that would be different.

ResearchMed
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by ResearchMed » Thu Dec 06, 2018 7:53 pm

goodlifer wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 4:17 pm
ResearchMed wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 3:50 pm
goodlifer wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 2:52 pm

<snip>

The only state laws I could find regarding personal information say that in 2017, a law passed that required the HOA to show a voter's name, address, email, and how we voted, if asked. I would think this would be an invasion of privacy but it is required, so there isn't much I can do. We have to write all of that information on the proxy vote anyway, so they already have it.

<snip>
HOW you voted? A *state* law that requires you to disclose to the HOA (or to *anyone*) HOW you voted?
Is there some other way to interpret "how you voted" other than meaning to disclose the actual choices on the ballot?

And then for the HOA somehow to SHOW (display? where?) this information about members' voting choices?

:shock:

Can this really be accurate?

RM
I found a post about someone complaining about the ability of neighbors looking up the poster's name and vote, so I googled and found this from Sect 19, cut to paragraph seven since the rest is about keeping other records:

"Sec. 19. Records of the association; availability for examination.
(a) The board of managers of every association shall keep and maintain the following records, or true and complete copies of these records, at the association's principal office:

(7) a current listing of the names, addresses, email

addresses, telephone numbers, and weighted vote of all members entitled to vote;
(8) ballots and proxies related to ballots for all

matters voted on by the members of the association during the immediately preceding 12 months, including, but not limited to, the election of members of the board of managers; and
(9) the books and records for the association's

current and 10 immediately preceding fiscal years, including, but not limited to, itemized and detailed records of all receipts, expenditures, and accounts."

It states that members must submit the request in writing, and not use the information for commercial purposes. Any association member can request the information "for a purpose that relates to the association". I read it to mean that if my neighbor asked me if I voted for her and I said yes, she could request my voting information to find out that I did not vote for her and never speak to me again. Am I assuming correctly? TBH, I'm not up on legalese and I'm on pain medication, so I'm a little fuzzy.
VERY sorry... I was thinking this was about "regular" voting (as in "politics"), and I was stunned.
So at least that's not it!!

But even so, to have the HOA votes made public, well, I guess as long as that is upfront, the HOA can make such "rules".
Still doesn't quite seem right, but OTOH, how else to ensure that the final tally is, er, accurate...?

RM
This signature is a placebo. You are in the control group.

iamlucky13
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by iamlucky13 » Thu Dec 06, 2018 8:04 pm

ResearchMed wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 3:50 pm
goodlifer wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 2:52 pm

The only state laws I could find regarding personal information say that in 2017, a law passed that required the HOA to show a voter's name, address, email, and how we voted, if asked. I would think this would be an invasion of privacy but it is required, so there isn't much I can do. We have to write all of that information on the proxy vote anyway, so they already have it.
HOW you voted? A *state* law that requires you to disclose to the HOA (or to *anyone*) HOW you voted?
Is there some other way to interpret "how you voted" other than meaning to disclose the actual choices on the ballot?

And then for the HOA somehow to SHOW (display? where?) this information about members' voting choices?

Can this really be accurate?
Unfortunately, I can believe it. That's only disclosing votes, and on matters internal to the HOA. In my area, an HOA recently made the news for a provision in their covenant allowing the HOA to effectively override the votes of members on a matter above the level of the HOA issue: in this case, specifically whether to be annexed by the adjacent city.

The HOA apparently delegated that alleged authority to the city mayor, who personally signed the petition to be annexed 29 times in order to get enough signatures to meet a threshold that does not require an election on the matter. Despite admitting the wording construed by the city and HOA to allow pre-emption of members' political rights was unclear, the state review board concluded it was not their competency to determine the lawfulness of the provision, and that it was otherwise valid for the HOA to, for all intents and purposes, steal its members' right to vote on that specific issue. I presume this case will be going to court if the owners are able to pool enough money to lawyer up against the legal resources of the city.

Saving$
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by Saving$ » Thu Dec 06, 2018 8:38 pm

I'm going to offer another explanation:
All of the information requested could be needed by a HOA depending upon the specific situation (condo association needing to know number of units rented for required FHA reporting; condo association needing to know number of occupants for required local fire marshal reporting, etc.). Your HOA has hired a management company, and the management company has one standard form they use to collect data from all the residents in all the communities they manage. Because each community has different needs, the form covers the combined data fields of all properties they manage - the only thing they change is the header with the name of the association.

If you live in an HOA, it is your responsibility to know the bylaws. Read them and fill out the data on the form you think pertains to what your bylaws cover. If they need more info they will send a follow up form which will probably include an explanation of why they need the data.

criticalmass
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by criticalmass » Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:40 am

goodlifer wrote:
Tue Dec 04, 2018 4:08 pm
I received a form included with our 2019 dues asking for a lot of personal information, and no letter stating why they need it or what they will do with it. I have tried calling the management company and it rings until it goes to a mailbox that is full, so I don't know if they are already gone for the day or people are calling en masse to complain.

They want to know who the homeowner is, who all of the occupants are, a list of all children's names and DOB, all pets and descriptions, all emails and phone numbers (including work #'s, emergency contact information, and the make, model, color, year, and license plate numbers for all cars, and homeowner insurance information. They also want a signed affidavit stating that all of my information is correct.

Do other HOA's do this? I'm concerned about what they will do if I refuse to give them this information. We do not live in a private, gated community. Any cars can come and go as the streets are public and there is a city owned park in the middle of our subdivision. If we saw what we thought was a suspicious car, we would call the police and not the HOA. Any parking rule violations and animal complaints would go to the police and not the HOA. Unless the covenants have been changed and no one was informed, there are no rules about renting, occupancy, or number of pets allowed in the homes. Those are all covered under city regulations.

If you live in an HOA and have come across this form, were you fined if you did not offer the information? I'm concerned that they think they are entitled to know this as it is titled as an annual census form.
Associations and Management companies don't exist in a vacuum. Doesn't yours have open meetings so that all members may attend and find out what's going on in your neighborhood and what decisions are made to do things like collect your information? I would treat the info requested as need-to-know, but it is reasonable to ask and receive contact information for homeowners and tenants.

Why would police care about private property parking rules and violations thereof? They enforce criminal violations / real laws, not association business.

goodlifer
Posts: 452
Joined: Sun Aug 16, 2015 9:50 pm

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by goodlifer » Fri Dec 07, 2018 2:00 am

criticalmass wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:40 am
goodlifer wrote:
Tue Dec 04, 2018 4:08 pm
I received a form included with our 2019 dues asking for a lot of personal information, and no letter stating why they need it or what they will do with it. I have tried calling the management company and it rings until it goes to a mailbox that is full, so I don't know if they are already gone for the day or people are calling en masse to complain.

They want to know who the homeowner is, who all of the occupants are, a list of all children's names and DOB, all pets and descriptions, all emails and phone numbers (including work #'s, emergency contact information, and the make, model, color, year, and license plate numbers for all cars, and homeowner insurance information. They also want a signed affidavit stating that all of my information is correct.

Do other HOA's do this? I'm concerned about what they will do if I refuse to give them this information. We do not live in a private, gated community. Any cars can come and go as the streets are public and there is a city owned park in the middle of our subdivision. If we saw what we thought was a suspicious car, we would call the police and not the HOA. Any parking rule violations and animal complaints would go to the police and not the HOA. Unless the covenants have been changed and no one was informed, there are no rules about renting, occupancy, or number of pets allowed in the homes. Those are all covered under city regulations.

If you live in an HOA and have come across this form, were you fined if you did not offer the information? I'm concerned that they think they are entitled to know this as it is titled as an annual census form.
Associations and Management companies don't exist in a vacuum. Doesn't yours have open meetings so that all members may attend and find out what's going on in your neighborhood and what decisions are made to do things like collect your information? I would treat the info requested as need-to-know, but it is reasonable to ask and receive contact information for homeowners and tenants.

Why would police care about private property parking rules and violations thereof? They enforce criminal violations / real laws, not association business.
Since our city has decided to pass laws that state where and how people can park, I'm assuming that they consider them "real" laws. The HOA does not own the streets or sidewalks and can't enforce anything.

criticalmass
Posts: 703
Joined: Wed Feb 12, 2014 10:58 pm

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by criticalmass » Fri Dec 07, 2018 2:06 am

goodlifer wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 2:00 am
criticalmass wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:40 am
goodlifer wrote:
Tue Dec 04, 2018 4:08 pm
I received a form included with our 2019 dues asking for a lot of personal information, and no letter stating why they need it or what they will do with it. I have tried calling the management company and it rings until it goes to a mailbox that is full, so I don't know if they are already gone for the day or people are calling en masse to complain.

They want to know who the homeowner is, who all of the occupants are, a list of all children's names and DOB, all pets and descriptions, all emails and phone numbers (including work #'s, emergency contact information, and the make, model, color, year, and license plate numbers for all cars, and homeowner insurance information. They also want a signed affidavit stating that all of my information is correct.

Do other HOA's do this? I'm concerned about what they will do if I refuse to give them this information. We do not live in a private, gated community. Any cars can come and go as the streets are public and there is a city owned park in the middle of our subdivision. If we saw what we thought was a suspicious car, we would call the police and not the HOA. Any parking rule violations and animal complaints would go to the police and not the HOA. Unless the covenants have been changed and no one was informed, there are no rules about renting, occupancy, or number of pets allowed in the homes. Those are all covered under city regulations.

If you live in an HOA and have come across this form, were you fined if you did not offer the information? I'm concerned that they think they are entitled to know this as it is titled as an annual census form.
Associations and Management companies don't exist in a vacuum. Doesn't yours have open meetings so that all members may attend and find out what's going on in your neighborhood and what decisions are made to do things like collect your information? I would treat the info requested as need-to-know, but it is reasonable to ask and receive contact information for homeowners and tenants.

Why would police care about private property parking rules and violations thereof? They enforce criminal violations / real laws, not association business.
Since our city has decided to pass laws that state where and how people can park, I'm assuming that they consider them "real" laws. The HOA does not own the streets or sidewalks and can't enforce anything.
If the location is a public way, then yes law enforcement can enforce actual LAWS. But if it is an association RULE, the word used above then it is likely not a police matter (certain ADA and fire codes are laws not HOA rules.)

If an HOA isn't maintaining streets and sidewalks and common area, I'm not sure it's worth the bother. I've lived in a home with a friendly civic association and like that much better than the stories I hear about HOAs.

Back to your form: Wasn't this form discussed at your open HOA meetings? If not, why not?

goodlifer
Posts: 452
Joined: Sun Aug 16, 2015 9:50 pm

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by goodlifer » Fri Dec 07, 2018 2:22 am

criticalmass wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 2:06 am
goodlifer wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 2:00 am
criticalmass wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:40 am
goodlifer wrote:
Tue Dec 04, 2018 4:08 pm
I received a form included with our 2019 dues asking for a lot of personal information, and no letter stating why they need it or what they will do with it. I have tried calling the management company and it rings until it goes to a mailbox that is full, so I don't know if they are already gone for the day or people are calling en masse to complain.

They want to know who the homeowner is, who all of the occupants are, a list of all children's names and DOB, all pets and descriptions, all emails and phone numbers (including work #'s, emergency contact information, and the make, model, color, year, and license plate numbers for all cars, and homeowner insurance information. They also want a signed affidavit stating that all of my information is correct.

Do other HOA's do this? I'm concerned about what they will do if I refuse to give them this information. We do not live in a private, gated community. Any cars can come and go as the streets are public and there is a city owned park in the middle of our subdivision. If we saw what we thought was a suspicious car, we would call the police and not the HOA. Any parking rule violations and animal complaints would go to the police and not the HOA. Unless the covenants have been changed and no one was informed, there are no rules about renting, occupancy, or number of pets allowed in the homes. Those are all covered under city regulations.

If you live in an HOA and have come across this form, were you fined if you did not offer the information? I'm concerned that they think they are entitled to know this as it is titled as an annual census form.
Associations and Management companies don't exist in a vacuum. Doesn't yours have open meetings so that all members may attend and find out what's going on in your neighborhood and what decisions are made to do things like collect your information? I would treat the info requested as need-to-know, but it is reasonable to ask and receive contact information for homeowners and tenants.

Why would police care about private property parking rules and violations thereof? They enforce criminal violations / real laws, not association business.
Since our city has decided to pass laws that state where and how people can park, I'm assuming that they consider them "real" laws. The HOA does not own the streets or sidewalks and can't enforce anything.
If the location is a public way, then yes law enforcement can enforce actual LAWS. But if it is an association RULE, the word used above then it is likely not a police matter (certain ADA and fire codes are laws not HOA rules.)

If an HOA isn't maintaining streets and sidewalks and common area, I'm not sure it's worth the bother. I've lived in a home with a friendly civic association and like that much better than the stories I hear about HOAs.

Back to your form: Wasn't this form discussed at your open HOA meetings? If not, why not?
The streets and sidewalks are owned by the city, so the city would issue fines if we didn't shovel or block the sidewalks. There isn't any common areas owned by the HOA that I can think of. The city owns the park and the pool association owns the clubhouse. I wouldn't know what was covered under the last meeting since they changed the date at the last minute and didn't post a new date. They are pretty lax about informing us about meetings but I will get 3 emails to remind me when they are having a party in the clubhouse. The only other meeting I knew about this year talked about traffic problems and a new subdivision being built.

criticalmass
Posts: 703
Joined: Wed Feb 12, 2014 10:58 pm

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by criticalmass » Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:33 am

goodlifer wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 2:22 am
criticalmass wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 2:06 am
goodlifer wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 2:00 am
criticalmass wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:40 am
goodlifer wrote:
Tue Dec 04, 2018 4:08 pm
I received a form included with our 2019 dues asking for a lot of personal information, and no letter stating why they need it or what they will do with it. I have tried calling the management company and it rings until it goes to a mailbox that is full, so I don't know if they are already gone for the day or people are calling en masse to complain.

They want to know who the homeowner is, who all of the occupants are, a list of all children's names and DOB, all pets and descriptions, all emails and phone numbers (including work #'s, emergency contact information, and the make, model, color, year, and license plate numbers for all cars, and homeowner insurance information. They also want a signed affidavit stating that all of my information is correct.

Do other HOA's do this? I'm concerned about what they will do if I refuse to give them this information. We do not live in a private, gated community. Any cars can come and go as the streets are public and there is a city owned park in the middle of our subdivision. If we saw what we thought was a suspicious car, we would call the police and not the HOA. Any parking rule violations and animal complaints would go to the police and not the HOA. Unless the covenants have been changed and no one was informed, there are no rules about renting, occupancy, or number of pets allowed in the homes. Those are all covered under city regulations.

If you live in an HOA and have come across this form, were you fined if you did not offer the information? I'm concerned that they think they are entitled to know this as it is titled as an annual census form.
Associations and Management companies don't exist in a vacuum. Doesn't yours have open meetings so that all members may attend and find out what's going on in your neighborhood and what decisions are made to do things like collect your information? I would treat the info requested as need-to-know, but it is reasonable to ask and receive contact information for homeowners and tenants.

Why would police care about private property parking rules and violations thereof? They enforce criminal violations / real laws, not association business.
Since our city has decided to pass laws that state where and how people can park, I'm assuming that they consider them "real" laws. The HOA does not own the streets or sidewalks and can't enforce anything.
If the location is a public way, then yes law enforcement can enforce actual LAWS. But if it is an association RULE, the word used above then it is likely not a police matter (certain ADA and fire codes are laws not HOA rules.)

If an HOA isn't maintaining streets and sidewalks and common area, I'm not sure it's worth the bother. I've lived in a home with a friendly civic association and like that much better than the stories I hear about HOAs.

Back to your form: Wasn't this form discussed at your open HOA meetings? If not, why not?
The streets and sidewalks are owned by the city, so the city would issue fines if we didn't shovel or block the sidewalks. There isn't any common areas owned by the HOA that I can think of. The city owns the park and the pool association owns the clubhouse. I wouldn't know what was covered under the last meeting since they changed the date at the last minute and didn't post a new date. They are pretty lax about informing us about meetings but I will get 3 emails to remind me when they are having a party in the clubhouse. The only other meeting I knew about this year talked about traffic problems and a new subdivision being built.
Ask for minutes and a schedule. You should be entitled to both.

wfrobinette
Posts: 726
Joined: Fri Feb 20, 2015 3:14 pm

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by wfrobinette » Fri Dec 07, 2018 4:51 pm

SevenBridgesRoad wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 12:54 am
SoAnyway wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 12:44 am
DetroitRick wrote:
Tue Dec 04, 2018 5:53 pm
As will satisfy most bureaucrats, I filled out entire form neatly and completely. But only the relevant, needed info was accurate.....Even though we're a small association (79 units), nobody questioned my Lambo or my wife's DeLorean.
Priceless, DetroitRick! (and thanks for the belly laugh you just provided me)

OP, I don't know that I'd have the stones or willingness to spend the time to do what DetroitRick did, but I do admire it. Personally, like others upthread, I'd just ignore the request.
What a bunch of sissy complainers. Have “the stones” to ‘spend the time’ and actually get involved with the HOA. The board are neighbors not bureaucrats. Have the stones to step up, man.
Are you sure they aren't bureaucrats?

My HOA (1000+ homes) is going through their first full election after the builders vacated their 3 majority seats. There are 2 competing factions and a couple of lone wolves running. One group of 5 is actually running together and claiming its all or nothing. Someone even went around the neighborhood attempting to collect proxies to vote for the group of 5.

Some people don't do well when given power and I've seen HOA boards run more like city council than a group of neighbors. The president walked around like he was the freaking mayor and expected to be treated as such.

I don't have time to spend in that kind of nonsense.

MJW
Posts: 641
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2016 7:40 pm
Location: Pacific Northwest

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by MJW » Fri Dec 07, 2018 6:38 pm

We are renters in a neighborhood with an HOA. If you have the ability to be involved to any degree with your HOA I would recommend you do it. I wish I could have a say in ours. Our landlords have intervened a couple of times on our behalf since we are not allowed access, but otherwise they are only marginally involved.

A couple of posters previously mentioned that they prefer to stay in their own lane, mind their own business and be left alone, etc. We are the same way, but I would argue that keeping an eye on the proceedings and weighing in on occasion can help protect your ability to go on in peace.

While HOA boards usually consist of volunteers that want to help, they are also an attractive platform for the neighborhood busybodies who have nothing better to do with their time than stick their nose in others’ affairs and make the most of the limited power they have been given in this life.

Our self-appointed “neighborhood captain” relishes treating our subdivision as his little fiefdom, patrolling the streets, tattling on neighbors, contributing to gossip, etc. Even though he’s a tiny pipsqueak in the grand scheme of things, he’s petty and vindictive enough to use what little power he does have to cause problems for people he decides he doesn’t like. You would be doing yourself a favor by mitigating the ability of people like that to have any influence on your home life.
Last edited by MJW on Sat Dec 08, 2018 12:58 am, edited 1 time in total.

wilked
Posts: 1352
Joined: Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:50 pm

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by wilked » Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:09 pm

If an uninterested observer were to read this thread... not the most ringing endorsement for an HOA

User avatar
SevenBridgesRoad
Posts: 78
Joined: Sat Jul 07, 2018 12:14 am

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by SevenBridgesRoad » Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:35 pm

wfrobinette wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 4:51 pm

Are you sure they aren't bureaucrats?
They might be. But they are also homeowners. And that is the main point: some here are discussing the HOA as if it’s some alien creature. Or a distant corporation. Something which they have no connection to. That’s conveniently wrong. The HOA is in fact the homeowners. You are the HOA, or at least a segment.

Like all things in life, once a group of people get together with skin in the game, there will be politics. That’s pretty much what politics means. You either get involved, or you concede to those who do so. Some will be inexperienced, some will be power drunk (how pathetic, right?), some will be bureaucratic, some will try hard to do the right thing. Get involved in some way or quietly accept the results. Otherwise you could be just a sissy complainer.
There are stars in the Southern sky | And if ever you decide you should go | There is a taste of time sweetened honey | Down the Seven Bridges Road

michaeljc70
Posts: 3870
Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2015 3:53 pm

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by michaeljc70 » Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:39 pm

wilked wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:09 pm
If an uninterested observer were to read this thread... not the most ringing endorsement for an HOA
Most people join them as a necessity. If you live in a very urban environment, condos and townhouses may be the only affordable options. SFH in sub divisions often have them as there is a pool, entry gate, clubhouse, common pond or something that needs to be handled by a HOA. I moved to a townhouse as the SFH in my area are 800k+ and way more space than I needed.

User avatar
TxAg
Posts: 1316
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by TxAg » Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:41 pm

That letter would go straight in the trash.

michaeljc70
Posts: 3870
Joined: Thu Oct 15, 2015 3:53 pm

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by michaeljc70 » Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:43 pm

SevenBridgesRoad wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:35 pm
wfrobinette wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 4:51 pm

Are you sure they aren't bureaucrats?
They might be. But they are also homeowners. And that is the main point: some here are discussing the HOA as if it’s some alien creature. Or a distant corporation. Something which they have no connection to. That’s conveniently wrong. The HOA is in fact the homeowners. You are the HOA, or at least a segment.

Like all things in life, once a group of people get together with skin in the game, there will be politics. That’s pretty much what politics means. You either get involved, or you concede to those who do so. Some will be inexperienced, some will be power drunk (how pathetic, right?), some will be bureaucratic, some will try hard to do the right thing. Get involved in some way or quietly accept the results. Otherwise you could be just a sissy complainer.
Yes, but I think a lot of people just want to live there and many that run for the board are power hungry or busybodies. It attracts them. That is my experience.

As a side note, in Chicago here we have had some crazy lawsuits against boards. Interesting reading. Threatening dogs....board conspiracies....people losing their units in disputes....and the like.

User avatar
SevenBridgesRoad
Posts: 78
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Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by SevenBridgesRoad » Fri Dec 07, 2018 10:03 pm

[/quote]
michaeljc70
Yes, but I think a lot of people just want to live there and many that run for the board are power hungry or busybodies. It attracts them. That is my experience.
[/quote]

Of course. That’s always what happens when normal reasonable people ‘just want to live their lives and be left alone’. Freedom at any level takes vigilance, takes work, takes getting involved. More motivated people will assume the various levels of power over your life. The motivations may be for bad or good. But if you choose to sit it out for any reason, you give up any power you had. Those who just want to live their lives will give up power to more motivated neighbors on the HOA, the school board, their church, their city council, and so on.

Sad to say, I sat on the sidelines until I couldn’t stand what the HOA board was doing. In talking to friends/neighbors we agreed sitting it out wasn’t going to improve things. Painfully, we decided to get involved and try to turn things back to a more neighborly HOA board. Yeah, I’d rather not do this but I decided someone had to.
There are stars in the Southern sky | And if ever you decide you should go | There is a taste of time sweetened honey | Down the Seven Bridges Road

User avatar
SevenBridgesRoad
Posts: 78
Joined: Sat Jul 07, 2018 12:14 am

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by SevenBridgesRoad » Fri Dec 07, 2018 10:45 pm

michaeljc70 wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:43 pm
SevenBridgesRoad wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:35 pm
wfrobinette wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 4:51 pm

Are you sure they aren't bureaucrats?
They might be. But they are also homeowners. And that is the main point: some here are discussing the HOA as if it’s some alien creature. Or a distant corporation. Something which they have no connection to. That’s conveniently wrong. The HOA is in fact the homeowners. You are the HOA, or at least a segment.

Like all things in life, once a group of people get together with skin in the game, there will be politics. That’s pretty much what politics means. You either get involved, or you concede to those who do so. Some will be inexperienced, some will be power drunk (how pathetic, right?), some will be bureaucratic, some will try hard to do the right thing. Get involved in some way or quietly accept the results. Otherwise you could be just a sissy complainer.
Yes, but I think a lot of people just want to live there and many that run for the board are power hungry or busybodies. It attracts them. That is my experience.

As a side note, in Chicago here we have had some crazy lawsuits against boards. Interesting reading. Threatening dogs....board conspiracies....people losing their units in disputes....and the like.
Of course. That’s always what happens when normal reasonable people ‘just want to live their lives and be left alone’. Freedom at any level takes vigilance, takes work, takes getting involved. More motivated people will assume the various levels of power over your life. The motivations may be for bad or good. But if you choose to sit it out for any reason, you give up any power you had. Those who just want to live their lives will give up power to more motivated neighbors on the HOA, the school board, their church, their city council, and so on.

Sad to say, I sat on the sidelines until I couldn’t stand what the HOA board was doing. In talking to friends/neighbors we agreed sitting it out wasn’t going to improve things. Painfully, we decided to get involved and try to turn things back to a more neighborly HOA board. Yeah, I’d rather not do this but I decided someone had to.
There are stars in the Southern sky | And if ever you decide you should go | There is a taste of time sweetened honey | Down the Seven Bridges Road

bluebolt
Posts: 562
Joined: Sat Jan 14, 2017 9:01 am

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by bluebolt » Sun Dec 09, 2018 8:42 am

SevenBridgesRoad wrote:
Fri Dec 07, 2018 10:45 pm
Of course. That’s always what happens when normal reasonable people ‘just want to live their lives and be left alone’. Freedom at any level takes vigilance, takes work, takes getting involved. More motivated people will assume the various levels of power over your life. The motivations may be for bad or good. But if you choose to sit it out for any reason, you give up any power you had. Those who just want to live their lives will give up power to more motivated neighbors on the HOA, the school board, their church, their city council, and so on.

Sad to say, I sat on the sidelines until I couldn’t stand what the HOA board was doing. In talking to friends/neighbors we agreed sitting it out wasn’t going to improve things. Painfully, we decided to get involved and try to turn things back to a more neighborly HOA board. Yeah, I’d rather not do this but I decided someone had to.
My experience with an HOA was very different. My neighbors who volunteered to be trustees were competent, thoughtful and spent the association's money like it was their own (which, of course, it was). They maintained good reserves, put vendor contracts out to bid regularly, and didn't take on major projects without putting a vote to all the unit owners.

For things that were helpful in maintaining/increasing the value of the units - painting, maintenance, landscaping, they were on top of things and spent enough to do what needed to be done, but not more than that.

During an 8 year period when energy prices nearly doubled, our HOA fee remained constant, despite the HOA being responsible for heating, cooling & lighting the common areas.

For all of that, they received no pay, had to spend a decent amount of time on HOA business and had to manage the constant complaints of a handful of never-satisfied neighbors.

Katietsu
Posts: 1647
Joined: Sun Sep 22, 2013 1:48 am

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by Katietsu » Sun Dec 09, 2018 9:47 am

I think the emergency contact and mobile phone information is important.

I have been involved in a few situations where this was needed. One neighbor had a water line break while out of town. Water was running out of the garage door and I was able to reach an adult son only because I knew his business name. In another case, a 50 year old man who lived alone had a heart attack. Having an emergency contact would have been helpful. And I would guess that an HOA’s records might be one of the places authorities would have looked in the California fires, after the fact, when they were trying to sort out missing person reports and possible deaths.

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jharkin
Posts: 1893
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Location: Boston suburbs

Re: Is this normal for an HOA?

Post by jharkin » Sun Dec 09, 2018 12:45 pm

I have no advice other than to say I’m adding his to my long list of reasons why I will NEVER live in a development with an HOA. And happy to live in New England where HOA communities are still in the minority.

Do you have to present your “papers” at the guard house too ? :oops:

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