Category Archives: Florida

Florida Outrage

Florida has a new law that allows HOAs to evict a homeowner who’s behind on dues and lease the house to a tenant to make up for the lost money. The Bridgewater Community Association in Wesley Chapel has taken that to extremes.
Joanne McCarn says she missed a $225 dues payment in 2009 when her mother died. She claims she knew nothing about the overdue payment until recently. The HOA began tacking on late fees, attorney’s fees, and collection costs. By the time Joanne found out about her missed payment, the HOA was demanding $2,565, more than ten times the original amount. Joanne and her husband both tried to contact Association officials, who refused to talk to them.
The McCarn family had leased their home to a renter. But the HOA used the new Florida law to kick out the McCarn’s renter and put in a renter of their own. Joanne says it’s completely outrageous because the house hasn’t been foreclosed on.
“I still own this house,” she says. “The HOA changed the locks on the home and they call the sheriff if I come near the property.”
A Homeowners Association lawyer in Florida says the HOA’s actions are illegal. If so, then homeowners in the Bridgewater Association may be hit with a special assessment to cover a hefty lawsuit against the community.

What Happens When an HOA Board Goes Rogue

It can happen at any time to any HOA board in the country: molehills turn into mountains, mountains into disasters and those disasters are jammed down the throats of unsuspecting homeowners.
The Arbors Village Homeowners Association is one of those classy little HOAs in Southern Florida, where the gated entrance keeps out all the common riffraff that some homeowners are so desperately afraid of.
Edward Grede and his wife bought their Florida home four years ago. But Grede wanted a nice door at his front entrance, a wrought iron door with a screen.  In fact, the original developer liked it and told Grede he could install it.
Ah, but now the jealousy strikes, the vicious kind of jealousy that can tear a neighborhood apart. 
You see, Grede is the only homeowner who asked the developer for such a door. “It’s just not fair,” the neighbors said. “It’s not fair for him to have such a nice door when nobody else can have one!” So they sued.  Yes, the Arbors Village Homeowners Association sued, demanding that Grede tear down his nice door and pay all the association’s expenses.
There was a slight problem with that. The lawsuit again Grede failed. The angry neighbors tried again, making their appeal to a different judge. Surprise, surprise, the second judge didn’t agree either.
The neighbors were left fuming, including HOA president Pat Towers, who pushed the lawsuit through the courts. All that remains is the legal bills which the HOA now has to pay.  Grede gets $100,000 to cover his bills, the HOA’s legal expenses are about $150,000, meaning the HOA has to suddenly come up with a quarter million dollars. Each and every homeowner is going to get a huge special assessment
One other thing remains behind: a nice gated neighborhood that is emotionally trashed, one neighbor hating another. They’ll have to live with the thought that $250,000 could have bought every resident in that neighborhood a nice screen door, just like the one Ed Grede has.

Another Reason to be SCARED of the HOA Experience!

A 40 unit apartment building in Titusville, Florida caught fire four years ago and most of the units were severely damaged. Obviously, all those in the building lost their homes. But the Bay Towers Homeowners Association is now foreclosing on dozens of displaced fire victims because they haven’t been paying their HOA dues. Apparently, even if your home is destroyed by fire, your HOA dues in some cases could technically go on forever!

One homeowner, Mike McDaniel, acknowledges he owes $8000 in HOA dues. But he says he’s now being sued for $48,000 for a place he’s not even allowed to set foot in.

Another HOA Property Manager With Her Pinkie in the Till

It’s always a sad day when a person in a position of trust violates the confidence he or she is given. It’s even sadder when the victims are elderly homeowners who’ve worked all their lives to save their money for retirement.

Homeowners Association boards and Property Management Companies, though, probably have more embezzlers than any other industry in America.

The latest arrest of a suspected embezzler happened in early July in St. Augustine, Florida. This blogger will enthusiastically post her name: she is 57 year old June Elizabeth Supko. She’s accused of stealing tens of thousands of dollars from the Captain’s Quarters Condominium Association.