Are Texans Stoopid?

What’s difficult to understand about the word ‘accountability’? Texas is one of a number of states where legislation is pending which would reign in the massive power of private HOA management companies. Homeowners in Texas, and elsewhere, are tired of being ripped off by arbitrary fines, punitive social controls, predatory towing of vehicles, confiscatory debt collection practices, abusive lawsuits, and massive embezzlement from the budgets of Homeowners Associations.  This is not a hard problem to understand. Your home is your castle. Isn’t it?

But on the other side of the accountability aisle are State Representatives and Senators who’ve made hundreds of millions of dollars for supposedly ‘managing’ planned communities. They hover like birds-of-prey over the neighborhoods they supervise, and the moment any weakness is spotted they swoop down and make a kill strike on a beleaguered homeowner, liening his home and selling it at auction before the homeowner can even catch his breath.

As good as this pending bill is, it doesn’t have a ghost of a chance of passage. The powers that be rake in too much money. An accountability bill would murder their profit margins.

I used to live in Texas. I never thought Texans were stupid.

Maybe they are.


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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.

2 thoughts on “Are Texans Stoopid?

  1. Nila

    I took a closer look at this Texas Tribune article mainly to see the comments posted at the end of the story.

    A couple of current Texas HOA board members state IF this bill passes it will make it hard to find volunteers to sit on the board. I don’t understand their thinking because I’ve personally dealt with this in my HOA in Kansas. First off, having a law to govern HOAs should help board members with clear guidance in the their decision making. It should also help deter “snake oil salesmen” from wanting to be on the board. I’ve watched good board members take guidance from the rotten apples. Usually because these are the ones with the power-hungry attitudes and they can intimidate the weaker personalities into voting for anything. The “Nazi’s” keep good and honest people from wanting to be on the board. So what happens? The “Nazi’s” take total control and I’ve watched the end result of that; self-dealing, missing records, ten million dollars unaccounted for, lawsuits flying like 737’s out of Love Field, and the meeker board members becoming ever more quiet or resigning from the board. Of course, this is PRECISELY what the “Little Hitlers” want because it makes life easier for them to “operate” the HOA with their style of management.

    I’m not a supporter of laws for everything! BUT, our society has become so full of corruption and evil people we have no other choice but to pass bills into laws. Especially in HOAs where innocent people are becoming victims by the thousands every day.

    I’ve observed the “blind faith and trust” exhibited by HOA members. That just leaves the entire community “ripe for the picking” by those with evil intent.

    HOAs like mine have an annual income of well over one million dollars. That is more than many small businesses in America has to operate with. It’s tempting for the thieves and it’s far more than somebody with no business experience can fathom to manage. So, what do they do? Hire a property manager of course. In some cases they may be a good idea, in others like I have witnessed its just another layer for wasting money. The biggest problem I can see is no oversight by anybody and no accountability to anyone.

    With all this said, I would think honest board members should be delighted to have bills on the legislative tables and would contacting the legislators to encourage passage. At least, that’s the way I see it!


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