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(The Week)   Seven of the worst examples of how HOAs are wretched hives of tin-pot fascist asshattery   (theweek.com) divider line 271
    More: Asinine, home-owners association, HOA, association rules, Old Glory, sense of community, secondhand smoke, sprinklers, common areas  
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32781 clicks; posted to Main » on 30 Aug 2010 at 2:46 AM (4 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2010-08-30 03:23:05 AM  
Hey, as long as these scumbags are arguing over HOA stuff all the time it means that they aren't in court rooms trying to spread their beliefs to the rest of the world.
 
2010-08-30 03:26:33 AM  
Freak: *shrug*

All this article does is reaffirm my decision to never live anywhere with an HOA. Don't really feel sorry for those people,HOA are run by asshats, but people who choose to live somewhere with an HOA are often asshats themselves so it works out.


So the very worst examples of HOA abuse lead you to believe you should never purchase a home in an HOA community? Perhaps you should never fly since there have been many fatalities in plane crashes. You should probably also avoid taking any prescription medication in the event that you suffer the one in a million fatal side effect.
 
2010-08-30 03:28:44 AM  
Stile4aly: Freak: *shrug*

All this article does is reaffirm my decision to never live anywhere with an HOA. Don't really feel sorry for those people,HOA are run by asshats, but people who choose to live somewhere with an HOA are often asshats themselves so it works out.

So the very worst examples of HOA abuse lead you to believe you should never purchase a home in an HOA community? Perhaps you should never fly since there have been many fatalities in plane crashes. You should probably also avoid taking any prescription medication in the event that you suffer the one in a million fatal side effect.



You know the risks of flying or taking medication you idiot.
 
2010-08-30 03:28:44 AM  
Everything I ever needed to know about HOAs I learned from Del Boca Vista on Seinfeld. TFA confirms it.
 
2010-08-30 03:29:03 AM  
Stile4aly: So the very worst examples of HOA abuse lead you to believe you should never purchase a home in an HOA community? Perhaps you should never fly since there have been many fatalities in plane crashes. You should probably also avoid taking any prescription medication in the event that you suffer the one in a million fatal side effect.

Or buy into a home that has an HOA because if my dog pisses in the front yard, they can take my house! Oh wait, none of these things are anywhere near the same. Nice strawman argument you tricky bastard!
 
2010-08-30 03:29:56 AM  
I this area, many of the newer "planned communities" have HOAs. The fees are to pay for things like street lights, maintenance of the common areas, landscaping in the common areas, pools and things like that. It's believed that an HOA will help keep your property value stable because they regulate things more than a non-HOA area.

That being said, when we bought our house, we made a point to avoid HOAs because we have four adults living in the house with cars. Most of the HOAs prohibit parking on the street and few houses in the area had driveways large enough to accommodate a full sized pickup, a mid-size pickup, a midsize passenger car and a compact car. Many of these places actually would not even allow cars to be parked in the driveway overnight.

Instead, we purchased a house in a neighborhood. In the first three weeks after moving in, our next door neighbors both dropped by to introduce themselves, a neighbor down the block dropped by with her granddaughter to say hello and welcome us to the neighborhood and one neighbor let us know who to call in the neighborhood for lawn service and tax preparation. Bonus: we have two city-run water parks within 3 miles of the house.
 
2010-08-30 03:30:54 AM  
HOAs

People paying for the privilege of paying for the privilege of living in their mom's attic, complete with a 6 figure mortgage.

That's not ownership, it's not living and God help people stupid enough to sign up for it.

Are we that facile, useless and greedy now? Truly?
 
2010-08-30 03:31:19 AM  
GaryPDX: If you signed up for an HOA, you deserve to have your nuts crushed, dumbass.

img299.imageshack.us
 
2010-08-30 03:31:32 AM  
Rustico: If you don't like the HOA for a house you're considering, then don't buy it. If you do buy it, you have accepted the rules that are set up--don't complain later that you don't like them.

One caveat, though. HOAs are subject to local, state, and federal laws. Just because you signed a damn statement handing over your soul doesn't mean it's legal.

A friend of mine bought a house awhile ago with a HOA involved. One of the HOA's rules was that satellite dishes were not allowed on people's property. That's a no-no. He had a satellite dish installed, the HOA fined him, and he took them to court. His attorney found out that the HOA had an informal arrangement in place with the local cable company which involved certain HOA board members getting various rate cuts and freebies from the company.

Needless to say, my friend now has satellite TV.
 
2010-08-30 03:32:06 AM  
WaltzingMathilda:Simple solution: read the documents that your deed is subject to before your attorney review period/due diligence period is over, and if you don't like it, terminate the purchase agreement and get your earnest money back.

When you instead say (legally) "I hereby take title to this home, subject to all legally binding encumbrances thereon," it's a little lame to later blame the HOA for something you don't like. You agreed to be part of it. Man up and quit your b*tchin'.


Hard to do when the HOA book is the size of Steven Kings "the Stand".

It also depends on who is in charge of the HOA sometimes you get people who are more laid back and sometime you get the Nazi's.

Funny thing is the City I grew up in MA use to be pretty laid back, but has gotten more and more like an HOA. They have new rules about trash pickup and even specify what kind of trash can you must use, so the rules are coming little by little.
 
2010-08-30 03:33:55 AM  
Have a hunch the members of these HOA's are (mostly) card carrying republicans opposed to big government and government interference in private lives.
 
2010-08-30 03:33:57 AM  
Praise Cheesus: Blah blah blah

Was the granddaughter hot* or what?

* assuming she was of legal age.
 
2010-08-30 03:35:26 AM  
Stile4aly: Freak: *shrug*

All this article does is reaffirm my decision to never live anywhere with an HOA. Don't really feel sorry for those people,HOA are run by asshats, but people who choose to live somewhere with an HOA are often asshats themselves so it works out.

So the very worst examples of HOA abuse lead you to believe you should never purchase a home in an HOA community? Perhaps you should never fly since there have been many fatalities in plane crashes. You should probably also avoid taking any prescription medication in the event that you suffer the one in a million fatal side effect.



See the word "reaffirm" in my original post? I was already against HOA just on principle. My property, my rules. Not my neighbors' rules, not some council's rules, not anyone but mine. The abuses just reaffirm my belief because it's proof of what can occur when you sign a contract that lets someone else tell you what you can and cannot do with your property. I sort of understand it for an apartment because of the shared space but for houses it's unnecessary bureaucracy.
 
2010-08-30 03:39:55 AM  
aearra: Have a hunch the members of these HOA's are (mostly) card carrying republicans opposed to big government and government interference in private lives.

But they harrumph at teh libT4rdz!!11 Go America!

Hypocrisy. Keeping your lawn safe from hippies and the greedy eating out of your fridge since we kicked out the Indians®.
 
2010-08-30 03:41:06 AM  
aearra: Have a hunch the members of these HOA's are (mostly) card carrying republicans opposed to big government and government interference in private lives.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe HOA's are creatures that come before the people in the neighborhoods. IE, some disinterested developer sets up an HOA because it's attractive to homeowners. Then, there is contractual privity down the line for subsequent buyers.
 
2010-08-30 03:41:12 AM  
FTFA: "Prudente was ultimately jailed for failing to resod his lawn, "

What the holy fark is that shiat? One of these days, some joker pushed over by an HOA is going to nut up and go on a shooting or arson spree. Or both.
 
2010-08-30 03:41:15 AM  
punkwrestler: They have new rules about trash pickup and even specify what kind of trash can you must use

This may not be as insane as it sounds. If they're shifting to a mechanized pick-up system they want uniform trash cans so the equipment works properly and so that the recycling ends up in the right bin.
 
2010-08-30 03:41:24 AM  
Outshined_One: Rustico: If you don't like the HOA for a house you're considering, then don't buy it. If you do buy it, you have accepted the rules that are set up--don't complain later that you don't like them.

One caveat, though. HOAs are subject to local, state, and federal laws. Just because you signed a damn statement handing over your soul doesn't mean it's legal.

A friend of mine bought a house awhile ago with a HOA involved. One of the HOA's rules was that satellite dishes were not allowed on people's property. That's a no-no. He had a satellite dish installed, the HOA fined him, and he took them to court. His attorney found out that the HOA had an informal arrangement in place with the local cable company which involved certain HOA board members getting various rate cuts and freebies from the company.

Needless to say, my friend now has satellite TV.


I remember something a while ago about Federal laws that overruled HOAs and other restrictions regarding the reception of OTA and satellite. It has been some years, but I do remember bringing this to my mother's attention when she learned she could not even have a satellite on her deck that nobody would see unless they walked up to it.
 
2010-08-30 03:43:49 AM  
In some cities, developers are required by law to set up an HOA for their "planned communities", which then takes over maintenance of stormwater management, streets, parks & playgrounds, security, etc for the development. It's a way of generating new revenue (permits & property taxes) without having to provide services.
 
2010-08-30 03:47:16 AM  
soundguy: It's a way of generating new revenue (permits & property taxes) without having to provide services.

www.gambling-systems.com
 
2010-08-30 03:50:58 AM  
Thanks for reminding me. Need to pay them.
 
2010-08-30 03:58:01 AM  
If a bag of money ever falls into my lap I want to buy all the available properties in an area with an HOA, get myself elected to the board (I get multiple votes so it shouldn't be too hard) then move to disband the HOA at every meeting, and vote to remove/deny every rule or action brought to the table. I don't even really want to succeed, I just want to fark with the HOA meetings the same way they fark with homeowners.
 
2010-08-30 04:06:29 AM  
Here's a solution...

"I don't want a house with an HOA"

"But, but... you HAVE to!"

"No I don't now go locate me something I want or suck my dick until your teeth hurt, real estate sales person"

"but.. but.."

Millions of saltine cartons with manicured lawns sit idle.

Agents don't get paid.

Banks can't give loans away.

HOA's end up blowing stevedores for beer money.

The market shifts to meet demands.

HOAs turn into one more thing people refuse to pay for.

Thousands of Nazi cocksuckers have to get a new hobby.

Homes return to private property.

Cities have to offer services for revenue.

Anarchy ensues.

Dogs and cats start getting along.

Should take about 10 years.
 
2010-08-30 04:09:59 AM  
The point being, when the only law of the land seems to be "Gimmie or we'll put you in jail" you fight a leviathan by shutting off its money.

Don't eat where the service stinks and the menu is lame.
 
2010-08-30 04:11:33 AM  
deffuse: Living in a part of the world where HOA's don't exist I have a few questions...
1) Is there any actual benefit of being joining the HOA? Cheaper house insurance or some-such?


Keeping house values up is one (lame) excuse I've heard. Plus, in neighborhoods with common features -- pools, etc. -- it deals with those as well.

2) Are you forced to join if you buy into the neighbourhood?

Yes.

3) Does it cost to be a member?

Usually, yes. Sometimes, it costs a lot, too. I've heard of $500/month HOAs.

4) Why would you?

F*ck if I know.

5) Doesn't it take away from 'my house my castle'?

Yes, but if you were stupid enough to sign a contract that lets other people tell you what you can and cannot do with your own property, you deserve what you get. Remember, if you buy a house in an HOA-infested neighborhood, you have to sign the contract.

/HOAs are bullsh*t
 
2010-08-30 04:24:20 AM  
In my case the "value" I get from a HOA is a decent commute. There's no way i could afford the mortgage payments on a place that was less than an hour commute (one way) and didn't have a HOA.

The most onerous reg of mine is the no satellite dishes on the roof (it's allowed on your porches but my porches can't see the southern sky). And it turns out I don't give a shiat about TV anyway, so no great loss.
 
2010-08-30 04:36:11 AM  
Mithiwithi: In my case the "value" I get from a HOA is a decent commute. There's no way i could afford the mortgage payments on a place that was less than an hour commute (one way) and didn't have a HOA.

The most onerous reg of mine is the no satellite dishes on the roof (it's allowed on your porches but my porches can't see the southern sky). And it turns out I don't give a shiat about TV anyway, so no great loss.


Lemme know when you can put up a volleyball net of park your car in your driveway.
 
2010-08-30 04:43:10 AM  
We live in a strata, (hoa to the Non-BC crowd), and although its only 10 units, the rules are ridiculous.
For instance, we can only have a reasonable amount of fish in a fish tank. No one knows what the number is, but it's some number that someone once had in mind.
Mostly everyone stays out of each others business, and to deal change most of the crap rules would take too much time and effort. We all pitch in,and rebuilt all the fences this year and last, and we just had our roof done..

So why did we join? Because we couldn't afford a single family house, and because we couldn't afford the upkeep on it. We paid 5k each for the new roof. On a single family it would have cost 40k.

Like many before have said, read the rules and get to know the people before you buy. You will also find out what kind of person owned your house and how likely you will find floor to ceiling mold in the master bath because the people never took care of the townhouse at all.
 
2010-08-30 04:45:46 AM  
I'm familiar with HOAs as coming with planned communities or multi-unit buildings like condos, but can an HOA form in an already existing neighborhood? For example, could homeowners on several blocks of houses that were built in the 60s come together and decide to start an HOA? If so, wouldn't they have to get approval from all affected neighbors?
I'm just curious; I live in an area with very few HOAs and don't know much about the process.
 
2010-08-30 04:46:55 AM  
i pay 2 HOAs...Master association and sub association.

good luck finding a place around here without em.
 
2010-08-30 04:49:41 AM  
Go ahead and biatch to your HOA that your neighbor's grass is too high. The HOA I'm living in has a parking code that would amaze you. Go 7 days within 60 days in a visitor's spot, and your car gets booted. There's one outside right now.

The HOA fees, which are now included in the mortgage, are $182 per month. Do you think they'll ever go down? I didn't think so.

God, I'm glad I still rent.
 
2010-08-30 04:50:33 AM  
HOAs are why Ghod invented axe handles.
 
2010-08-30 04:53:55 AM  
barc0001:
punkwrestler: They have new rules about trash pickup and even specify what kind of trash can you must use

This may not be as insane as it sounds. If they're shifting to a mechanized pick-up system they want uniform trash cans so the equipment works properly and so that the recycling ends up in the right bin.


They aren't they just want everyone to go out and spend money on new plastic barrels. They also have to be leak proof. Which mean they'll be really farking heavy if it rains that week.

The inspectors are real d-bags they come by at 2am and skulk around looking for violations. You can get cited for having trashbags on the curb not in a barrel, having lids on the trash bags on the curb, overflowing the trashbags on the curb.... They also tried to fine me when a neighbor who was moving out in the house next door parked his crap in front of my house....

If you really wanted to do a spring cleaning you are SOL.
 
2010-08-30 04:59:12 AM  
Behind every successful fascist construct is a pack of bloated morons with a lot of arbitrary rules saying "you HAVE to" and behind every working overthrow of that construct is a whole bunch of people saying "the f*ck I do, sunshine."

See - United States.
 
2010-08-30 05:05:05 AM  
Megathuma: I'm familiar with HOAs as coming with planned communities or multi-unit buildings like condos, but can an HOA form in an already existing neighborhood? For example, could homeowners on several blocks of houses that were built in the 60s come together and decide to start an HOA? If so, wouldn't they have to get approval from all affected neighbors?
I'm just curious; I live in an area with very few HOAs and don't know much about the process.


You could, but everyone would have to agree to it. I suppose you could leave those people out of it and still form one, but you couldn't make them play by the hoa's rules, so what would be the point?
 
2010-08-30 05:13:45 AM  
People love ripping on HOAs. Until it's time to sell your place and you have to lower the asking price $50,000 because nobody wants to move next to your hillbilly neighbors with their rusted pick-up truck parked on the lawn.

It's my money, if I want to spend it on fees that make sure I live in a clean, safe, high-property-value environment that's my business.

Now get the hell off my well-manicured lawn.
 
2010-08-30 05:18:22 AM  
Oh and another thing...

#4 ftfa, about the girl with unfit parents who moved in with grandparents in an adult-only community: Gee, I'm sorry your mommy's a crack whore but maybe people who live in the retirement village don't want you around. They sunk all of their retirement money into a nice quiet place where they don't have to listen to little kids (and their visiting friends) running and around screaming and splashing in the pool.

Same thing with the "No For Sale sign" rule. Get an agent and post the listing online, how hard is that? Sheesh.
 
2010-08-30 05:21:13 AM  
Having bought a house last year, one of my conditions on looking for a house was "No HOA!" My agent tried to show me a house in a good neighborhood, with a lower-than-average price tag, at a decent size, and as soon as she got to "And they have a HOA," I just stopped her. I then instructed her that if she showed me another home of any sort with a HOA, I would be looking for another agent. It didn't happen again after that.

Reading stories like this only reinforce that I did the right thing.
 
2010-08-30 05:22:25 AM  
a lot of you that say no to HOAs, tell me, how do you find an affordable house in the Northern Virginia area that you aren't going to get knifed or your car stolen?
 
2010-08-30 05:25:20 AM  
Begoggle: Yes, but it's always that way, until it's not.
One day you get some nazi HOA dude in charge and making up stupid-ass rules,


That's the thing, in California, it takes a majority vote (or sometimes 2/3rds vote) to add or remove rules.

You can't have one asshat adding or removing rules on a whim. Assuming your HOA is following state law.

Once again, it falls back to your neighbors, are they asshats or not?
 
2010-08-30 05:26:58 AM  
drew46n2 :i pay 2 HOAs...Master association and sub association.


You belong to the S&M Community ASSociation?
 
2010-08-30 05:30:16 AM  
Mithiwithi: The most onerous reg of mine is the no satellite dishes on the roof (it's allowed on your porches but my porches can't see the southern sky). And it turns out I don't give a shiat about TV anyway, so no great loss.

My HOA has a "no dishes on the roof" rule. But people break it and the HOA leaves them alone.

As long as they don't damage the roof, nobody cares (the HOA is the neighbors after all).

OTOH, if they do manage to damage the roof tiles, then having the rule makes it a lot easier to get the dough for repairing the roof from the person that screwed up (hey we told you not to put a dish up there).
 
2010-08-30 05:37:29 AM  
Is there any way of removing a HoA from an area? Because surely, eventually, they would just keep spreading (like cancer).
 
2010-08-30 05:44:25 AM  
CarrieWhite: Is there any way of removing a HoA from an area? Because surely, eventually, they would just keep spreading (like cancer).

A lot of them are tied to the deeds, and the city requires a neighborhood have one. Or the developer requires it, you can get rid of the neighbor run one, but then there's a private company contracted to do it since you guys dont want to.

They're nasty filthy things, if I could get out of mine, I would, but I can't. And this house was the only thing I could afford and have a commute under an hour/30 miles. Plus its in a very safe area of town not known for crime at all, so I put up with it, because well there was really no choice.
 
2010-08-30 05:59:47 AM  
lordargent: Begoggle: Yes, but it's always that way, until it's not.
One day you get some nazi HOA dude in charge and making up stupid-ass rules,

That's the thing, in California, it takes a majority vote (or sometimes 2/3rds vote) to add or remove rules.

You can't have one asshat adding or removing rules on a whim. Assuming your HOA is following state law.

Once again, it falls back to your neighbors, are they asshats or not?


Er. What? HOAs are formed via a multiparty contract - they have no-fark-at-all to do with how the STATE laws are determined; that'd be like saying you'd never be able to complete a contested divorce in Cali, since less than 66% of the total parties want to get divorced.

Contract law != state law. They interact, but not even close to how you think they do.

Anyway, the bad HOAs (and I stress "bad" here - I have a good one that only invokes its powers if you really fark up, and it also bargains with local cable & power suppliers to negotiate better rates) stack the board with cronies, often ones that are kicking in crazy-ass laws to benefit themselves in some way or another.

If you don't have retired, miserable assholes on bad HOAs, you almost always have "businesspeople", also known as "incredibly corrupt piles of shait who'll sell thousands of people out for a few bucks". Really, it can get pretty ugly, especially since they are not government officials and therefore not required to follow any kind of laws regarding conflicts of interest. Ergo, they can pull shiat like try and ban satellites in the entire neighborhood to create a noncompetitive cable market, meaning hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars a year are being gouged from thousands of homeowners... In exchange for cheap rates for 3 or 4 people, or maybe some free channels. Wow, that's like pimping your mom out for pennies - it's bad enough you're doing it in the first place, but can you give the old girl some dignity?!
 
2010-08-30 06:15:34 AM  
Rustico: Love our HOA. Inexpensive. Read all the rules before I bought the house. Houses in our are have held their value better than other areas.

If you don't like the HOA for a house you're considering, then don't buy it. If you do buy it, you have accepted the rules that are set up--don't complain later that you don't like them.


Land of the free eh?
 
2010-08-30 06:31:27 AM  
I have a HOA in my neighborhood. They're not dicks, but there's no benefit, either, and it costs me $450\yr. Here's all the interaction I've had with my HOA over the last four years:

1. Letter telling me to power wash my siding (ok, it needed it)
2. Letter telling me not to leave my trashcans on the driveway
3. Here's the doozie - Six months after I bought my house, which partially backs up to commercial property, the owners of said property decided to have a cell phone tower built TWO FEET FROM MY BACK FENCE (Not an exaggeration - I can literally touch it from my back yard). Anyway, I consulted with my HOA to see if anything could be done. They were no help at all. In fact, they referred me to a different HOA (the condos down the street). They were more helpful, but ultimately it did no good because my residence isn't technically IN a municipality, and therefore not covered by the rules of the municipality of which it should be a part of. Basically I live in an unincorporated area, even though it's farking Houston.

The lesson to be learned here: First time home buyers (or anyone, really) - DO NOT buy property that backs up to commercial property unless you want a 200 foot tall lawn ornament.
 
2010-08-30 06:32:51 AM  
I would only join a HOA if it had a "No fat chicks" rule.
 
2010-08-30 06:37:10 AM  
For those that don't understand purchasing an HOA home, it isn't always optional. What I mean is no matter who you are, you have some limits to where you can live in terms of price, location, and so on. Sometimes you find that everything in that range has an HOA, no exceptions. You can't realistically tell someone "Just move somewhere else," if the nearest non-HOA place they could afford is two hours away from work/school or something.

Also the come with some kinds of housing. Maybe you want to get a condo because they cost less, you'd like to not worry about exterior maintenance and you are ok with not having a yard to yourself. Or maybe you live in a dense area where that's all there is. Regardless, something like that has to have a governing board since they have to deal with common area/structure issues. Unfortunately they don't generally come with labels saying "This association doesn't really bother anyone and just lets a professional property manager take care of everything," or "This association is run be egomanical assholes who want to rule your life."
 
2010-08-30 06:41:48 AM  
Girion47: They're nasty filthy things, if I could get out of mine, I would, but I can't. And this house was the only thing I could afford and have a commute under an hour/30 miles. Plus its in a very safe area of town not known for crime at all, so I put up with it, because well there was really no choice.

Yes, there was. You simply decided that the conveniences outweighed the inconveniences. For you, it was the proper decision, or you would have accepted the inconveniences instead.

/at least be honest with yourself
 
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