Structural Engineers Wail Warnings About HOA And Condo Design Projects

guest blog by Nila Ridings

In the same way homeowners are getting wiser and wiser to the nightmares of HOAs and condo associations so are the engineering professionals who get caught in the very early stages of this insanity. The HOA attorneys are wiping them out, too.

I love it when “insiders” open the can of worms on corruption.  This time it’s the structural engineers and their insurers sounding the alarm about working with architects and developers on condominium projects. And their insurance agents are giving them a “heads up” on how to protect themselves against the inevitable HOA lawsuit.

Reading between the lines it seems they’re saying, “Run from condo projects! HOAs and condos are a pain in the neck to deal with even in hard times when work is scarce! Don’t let the pockets of your engineering firm be the deepest ones in the courtroom” is the message I’m hearing.

It’s disgusting to see the vast numbers of people who are being harmed by this entire HOA and condo association mess. I think we should invite the structural engineers to join our activism. They can relate to the pain and suffering that homeowners are going through… and the fear of the inevitable legal battles with the HOA attorneys.

(the legal risk of working on a condo design)

(And another good link:)


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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.

4 thoughts on “Structural Engineers Wail Warnings About HOA And Condo Design Projects

  1. peggy

    Great Idea Ward. The publicity might help slow down building more, however, they are still reproducing like rabbits here in FL.

  2. Deborah Goonan

    I wish I had read these articles 2 years ago.

    There are two sides to this issue, because some of the designs ARE poor from the get-go. Other times, corners get cut during construction and the original design plan is not followed.

    Buyers need to be aware that defects can occur in roads, storm drainage, ponds and lakes, shared recreational amenities such as pools and decks, parking areas, etc. Buyers can get home inspections, but rely on local building code enforcement to ensure a decent product.

    But think about it. If the local municipality or county does not have to maintain it, they probably do not care much if it was built well.

  3. Nila Ridings

    Your insight is always right on Deborah!

    Unfortunately, there have been far too many times when the building inspectors lack knowledge or they are friends with the builders and things get passed that should not.

    For those that remember the sky walks that collapsed at the Hyatt in Kansas City on July 17, 1981. That was proof enough that design/construction/inspection mistakes happen and innocent victims paid the price.


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