Deck Collapses At Wolf Lake Homeowners Association In Indiana

guest blog by Nila Ridings

Homeowners Associations, beware! The Wilt Family Christmas gathering, on December 22nd suddenly ended with the family photo gathering on the clubhouse deck.  Their lives were changed forever in a matter of seconds when the deck collapsed out from under them.  3 of the family members are still not able to walk.  

The deck had no center supports.  No bolts.  Just nails to support it and the weight of all who walked out onto it.  A family member has taken the time to post a video on YouTube revealing these undeniable facts.  The builder of the deck says it’s been ten years since it was constructed and he has no liability.  The president of the HOA, John Karaffa has not returned calls to the television reporter…don’t hold your breath, he never will.  But, very soon everybody will be talking under oath in the courtroom! 

If you live in an HOA with a clubhouse and balcony, I strongly encourage you to watch the video.  And then watch the videos included in the context of the article.  Insist on an inspection of your clubhouse deck.  As a homeowner in an HOA you hold liability for injuries or deaths.  The risks are too great not to demand an inspection by a professional.


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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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