I have enormous sympathy for people who buy into an HOA. Heck, I was dumb enough to do the same thing. Three times! But in retrospect, I was STOOPID! I was a lamb among the wolves. Never had a clue.
The biggest unreported financial crime in America is embezzlement from an HOA. The following story isn’t even extraordinary, it happens in city after city, day after day. But homeowners (like me) are just too witless to ‘get it.’ The HOA scam is beyond any reasonable explanation. If you’ve bought an HOA property you’ve just donated your life savings to a massive national criminal enterprise that the government will never investigate, expose, or end. Kiss your life savings, ‘Goodbye.’
Egads! I’ve never met Sara Benson, never even talked to her on the phone, but I’d have an affair with her in an instant, if she’d agree! (Yep, I’m not very classy, but I’m sincere!)
This incredible Illinois Realtor has discovered that up to 80% of Illinois Homeowners Associations are unknown and untracked by the state! The implications are massive. It means that huge numbers of Americans have signed away their access to rights conferred by the U.S. Constitution by buying homes in private corporations where they’re lying naked in front of all their fellow homeowners. They think they’ve bought private homes, but what they’ve actually bought is shares in unregulated corporations in which they can be taxed, liened, sued and bankrupted with their life savings going into a common pot owned by all their fellow neighbors.
Yes, welcome to your new condo. You’re going to love living here. The neighbors all get along and we don’t seem to suffer the kinds of problems felt in many other Homeowners Associations. You’re buying into a little bit of Heaven, your own private home. Welcome, welcome, welcome!
Oh, we’re sorry we couldn’t give you copies of the covenants, the budget and insurance papers in time for your real estate closing. At the time you requested them, the paperwork was tied up in some minor snafu. But it’ll all get worked out soon.
I love the FBI. I love the many federal agents I have known. But my pet peeve is that the FBI, which keeps track of annual crime statistics, does not keep track of the number of Homeowners Associations which have been hit by an embezzlement by board members or property managers. Thus, it’s my belief that embezzlement from HOAs is the largest unreported crime in America. Nobody keeps track!
guest blog by Deborah Goonan (IndependentAmericanCommunities.com)
The HOA industry, and the politicians who support the industry – perhaps for dubious reasons – use the same talking point, over and over again:
“Vote the bums out!”
What a joke! As many have pointed out here on this blog, there are many factors that make a mockery of the fair election process in homeowners or condo associations.
The very first problem is that votes are allocated according to the corporate model of governance, and not based upon a democratic basis of “one person, one vote.” In Association Governed Residential Communities, voting interests (notice I did not say “rights”) are tied directly to the share of property owned within the association.