Your HOA Can Give You Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

I had to laugh when I read the seemingly scientific paper written by Professor Gary Solomon. It was hilarious, so tongue-in-cheek and so incredibly well delivered. Page after page was so creative, inventive and…… WTF? Was he being serious? I tracked him down at his home in Nevada to compliment him on his prize-winning work of creative fiction.

He put me straight in the first fifteen seconds. “That’s not fiction,” he said. “It’s real. It’s a real medical syndrome.”

I was absolutely stunned. Here was a well-educated, well-known Professor of Psychology saying that Homeowners Associations were actually capable of generating physical illness in some of their residents!

Professor Solomon said he had lived in a community with an HOA and he noticed that some of his neighbors were suffering from various symptoms like obsessive rumination, depression, physical health problems, and paranoia. The symptoms were similar to those often associated with PTSD or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Battle fatigue caused by life in an HOA? Seriously, Professor, you’ve got to be kidding?

Nope. He’s not. Dr. Solomon has named the anxiety disorder experienced by homeowners as HOA Syndrome.

Dr. Solomon says the cause of HOA Syndrome is the fear of harassment, and powerlessness in the face of threats of fines, fees and lawsuits. Other symptoms of this anxiety disorder include anxiousness, depression, worrying, sleeping disorder, paranoia, fear of going to one’s own mailbox, hyper-vigilance and stress.

I think I have it.

Ward Lucas

Neighbors At War: The Creepy Case Against Your Homeowners Association

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Ward Lucas is a longtime investigative journalist and television news anchor. He has won more than 70 national and regional awards for Excellence in Journalism, Creative Writing and community involvement. His new book, "Neighbors At War: the Creepy Case Against Your Homeowners Association," is now available for purchase. In it, he discusses the American homeowners association movement, from its racist origins, to its transformation into a lucrative money machine for the nation's legal industry. From scams to outright violence to foreclosures and neighborhood collapses across the country, the reader will find this book enormously compelling and a necessary read for every homeowner. Knowledge is self-defense. No homeowner contemplating life in an HOA should neglect reading this book. No HOA board officer should overlook this examination of the pitfalls in HOA management. And no lawyer representing either side in an HOA dispute should gloss over what homeowners are saying or believing about the lawsuit industry.

1 thought on “Your HOA Can Give You Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

  1. shelly

    I think I noticed this in some of my neighbors too–when our board went our of control and doubled out dues with nary a mention of it to the owners until the annual statements went out. I had excessive guilt–that was because I had helped the “resistance” so to speak and they board started going after them–in fact the board sued us!!! Because I felt so responsible, I personally took on the mounting legal fees when my neighbors on fixed incomes could not manage to donate more. It amount to $11,000 dollars and I was truly sick about it… We won, and I eventually got my money back but HOA Syndrome? Yeah, I had it! Thank you for a great post!


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