Have We Lost Our Minds?

guest blog by Nila Ridings
This story may serve as a mind-bending psychological trip when a prospective homeowner has to “win” over the board to be granted the right to buy into a place to live. 
Medical students stress over the LSAT, MCAT, and Step One, Two, and Three before they qualify for a medical degree. All of those tests induce stress beyond comprehension. But it’s more understandable when you realize these positions require a great deal of commitment and little room for error.
Many prospective home buyers are going through similar agony over their “interviews” with co-op boards as if acceptance into one of these places could mean life or death.  Are they really providing employment details, financial records, and having their pets “interviewed” just to be able to put a roof over their heads?
What if they get laid off, change jobs, or their company agrees to a merger that doesn’t meet the acceptance of the board?  Or their dog goes to a new groomer and the new haircut isn’t to the liking of the uppity board president?  What happens if their uncle’s cousin is convicted of bank robbery?  Could these changes push these “lucky” homeowners into homelessness?
Ridiculous.  Outrageous.  Insane.  Who would, and why would, anybody ever sign on to such nonsense…and pay for it? 

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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.

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