You’d think that a prospective homeowner would be allowed to see the community financials when he’s buying a home, especially if it’s in the neighborhood covenants and ingrained in state law. But as I’ve long said, most HOA boards feel they’re above the law. And usually they’re right. Challenge them and they’ll take you to the cleaners.
That’s what’s happening in a developing story in Florida. The Village Walk of Naples has 850 homes behind its private gates. It employs eight people including the ‘town manager.’
When new homeowner Greg Chumbley asked the board of directors to show him the HOA’s financials they basically told him to take a hike. All Chumbley wanted to know is how much of his dues were going to pay for those eight employees.
The board claims that giving the public any record of its expenses might lower property values in the HOA. Really? That’s the kind of thumb-in-mouth attitude that makes a majority of Americans despise those gated communities. With all the tens of thousands of cases of neighborhood embezzlement, bribery and extortion that goes on in HOA Amerika it also raises a whole lot of understandable suspicion. “Light (truth) is the best disinfectant,” said a famous Supreme Court Justice.
Chumbley has now filed a lawsuit demanding that his HOA obey the law. The first hearing is December 1st.
Chumbley is a brave, brave man for a host of reasons. Not only is he “slapping this mule upside the head,” he’s doing it very publicly by releasing his phone number and ‘share button’ on his website.
Greg, you can’t imagine the number of admiring fans you have across the country. Please let us know how your case turns out.
Contact: Greg Chumbley, 239-300-6169