Florida HOA Kicked in its St. Augustine Grass!

guest blog by Nila Ridings 

The good doctor and his wife really wanted to follow their HOA’s rules and regulations. They also wanted to keep harmful fertilizers out of the Intracoastal Waterway near Jacksonville. 
They filed the necessary paperwork for a “Florida Friendly” yard. After getting no response during the customary 30 day waiting period, they started their landscaping project.
Whoa! The official “HOA Double Standard” raised its ugly head in the form of a nasty lawsuit!
Dr. and Mrs. Sidle had followed all the HOA rules, but the HOA didn’t bother to follow its own. So, off to see the judge they went. The court ordered mediation and the HOA board gave complete representation to the mediator to settle the case. Everyone agreed and the couple planted all the approved flowers. They were even presented with the first-ever Gold Certified Florida Friendly Landscape Award in Duval County.
The problem? The HOA president didn’t like the mediator’s decision and demanded a full-blown trial!
Ultimately, the judge ruled in favor of Dr. and Mrs. Sidle. Sadly, the Sidles weren’t awarded their legal fees. And all their neighbors will undoubtedly get slammed with a special assessment to pay for the board’s arrogance and ignorance of Florida law.
No mention of the current board’s status, but I hope this board president gets booted into the Intracoastal Waterway with all that soggy St. Augustine Grass draped around his neck. The Florida Friendly Landscape Award sounds like a winner but this board president has proven himself to be a real loser!

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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 “Florida HOA Kicked in its St. Augustine Grass!

  1. Dave Russell

    Another case where the HOA fails to respond and somehow, its the homeowners fault? I wonder what would happen if there was a law like this….”If the board member does not prevail, he/she has to cough-up the legal fees out of their own pocket.” You bet your bootstraps there would be a fraction of the HOA lawsuits there is now.


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