September 12, 2011 9:49 AM Subscribe
Is my Homeowners Association being arbitrary and capricious in enforcing its rules?
posted by teg4rvn to law & government (22 answers total)
*You are not my lawyer*; nevertheless, opinions are requested. Forgive a slight amount of vagueness in certain parts of my question. As many of you are aware if one is too specific here on the green, someone else doing a google search on the same topic will find this thread in their top ten within days.
Four years ago, we wanted to erect a specific type of sports equipment on our driveway (hint/hint..think LeBron James). The committee of our HOA that handles these matters declined our request, stating simply that they were prohibited. Well, in fact, they're not according to the CC&Rs, they just simply need to be approved by this committee. Nevertheless, we abided by this decision and did not erect this structure. In the intervening 4 years, we have seen at least a dozen obvious violations of the CC&Rs, and reported almost all of them to the President of the HOA. In every instance except one, he has failed to cite the homeowners or even point it out to them. When asked he said the corrections would place undue burden on the homeowner. The problem is that in each instance, the homeowner was required to report their landscaping/architectural plans to the same committee that denied our request...BEFORE they made the modification to their home/property, none of them did.
Also, over the course of the last four years, neighbors have come and gone and the makeup of the community has changed (i.e., more families with kids) so we thought, as per the CC&R rules we could bring this up for a vote. There are only twenty five homes in the community, unfortunately, the aforementioned committee for "architectural" matters has had the same three members for nearly a decade. They do not want this vote and claim their decision is final. And forgive a little age-ism here, but they are retired individuals who have openly said to me that children should not be playing in the neighborhood, that's what parks and YMCAs are for.
What options do I have? What would you do? We plan to encourage the homeowners that agree with us (likely a majority now) to try to run for HOA office to maybe oust this committee, but also we wonder based on my description above if we've been treated unfairly and that the fiefdom of our little HOA is selectively harming us and not impacting others represents some sort of true legal abdication of their responsibilities. In the end, the HOA has only a couple of thousand dollars in its account at any one time, so the ability to get into a legal tussle with us is severely limited.
Obviously, we're angry and slightly vengeful. Please help me see through the fog of the smoke pouring out of my ears......Thanks.