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Showing posts from May, 2015

Villages: HOA, HRC and other varieties

With some 60 million residents in the USA living in common interest developments (CIDs and HOAs), these locations are typical villages of self-government. If you live in one of these communities, you know the story. Beyond these villages, other communities are village-like in the way they operate and the way they govern their affairs. Such is the style and character of political parties and the associations which revolve around those parties. Every once in awhile, ALTACITIES likes to check in on the 'social current see' that flows from and around these parties, as in the content that follows.

[View the story "Clinton (Billary & Hillary) 'Video Village'" on Storify]

"Life doesn't require that we be the best, only that we try our best." ~H. Ja... #dailyqotd#qotd — Mike Foxworth (@ALTALOMAN) May 30, 2015

When the state and HOAs clash, who wins?

Common interest developments (CIDs and HOAs) are fast becoming the dominate housing type within the United States and growth of these self-government models is continuing to raise jurisdictional and legal issues for state lawmakers across the land. The 'social current see' that follows cites a Florida ruling that declared that HOA rules trump state law in a specific area. And now that California government is about to limit HOA restrictions on controlling homeowner choice about landscaping and lawn maintenance, other court rulings are surely coming to sort out future conflicts?

[View the story "HOA rules trump state law, always?" on Storify]

"Don't worry about failures, worry about the chances you miss when you don't ... #dailyqotd#qotd — Mike Foxworth (@ALTALOMAN) May 29, 2015

CA: Lack of water, 'a brain drain for millions'

Today, when we talk about grass in California, we are not usually speaking about weed or marijuana, of course. Instead, the topic most often concerns the status of our lawns and the shortage of water. The 'social current see' on topic continues to roll, but real answers are lacking, even the answers from lawmakers and politicians. But did we honestly expect anything else?

[View the story "California spouts new lawn laws" on Storify]

"We will either find a way, or make one." ~Hannibal #dailyqotd#qotd — Mike Foxworth (@ALTALOMAN) May 27, 2015

What's your HOA foreclosure IQ?

Foreclosure is a legal process in which a lender attempts to recover the balance of a loan from a borrower who has stopped making payments to the lender by forcing the sale of the asset used as the collateral for the loan. The foreclosure process can be started by homeowners associations (HOAs) and common interest developments, but not without some careful consideration and following the laws of California or other states.

[View the story "HOA foreclosures: The Kelly File" on Storify]

"No amount of ability is of the slightest avail without honor." ~Andrew Carnegie #dailyqotd#qotd — Mike Foxworth (@ALTALOMAN) May 25, 2015

HOAs don't always make par with golf course neighbors

Common interest developments (CIDs and HOAs) often exist in proximity to golf courses, but not always without issues with the owner-operator of those courses. As you can read in the following 'social current see', the issue usually has to do with maintenance of the course, but can deal with conflict over the mere presence of the course. Usually, because the course is owned and operated by an independent third party, the relationship with the HOA is only governed by the covenant (CC&R) that has been put in place and agreed to by both parties.


[View the story "Golf course v. HOA (game on!)" on Storify]

"That some achieve great success, is proof to all that others can achieve it ... #dailyqotd#qotd — Mike Foxworth (@ALTALOMAN) May 23, 2015

Read this before you buy property in Mexico

Baby boomers today in California are notable for their purchases of retirement homes or second homes South of the Border and even in some South America countries. Smart buys outside the USA require some extra due diligence and inspection of legal pitfalls. As noted in the following clips, errors of judgment or failure to obtain all the details may result in a sudden loss of ownership after a significant investment of life savings.

[View the story "Beware of Mexican condo heists" on Storify]

"There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear o... #dailyqotd#qotd — Mike Foxworth (@ALTALOMAN) May 21, 2015

Some HOAs have some doggone tricky rule catchers

You may not believe it, but some will say that technology is our friend. But if you read the following, you can draw the conclusion that new technology may not be a best friend to man's best friend. That is, if you value your dog's privacy. Hard to believe but the following is a true story from an Arizona HOA.  So it may be time to check your HOA rules for some of those doggone tricky violations.

[View the story "Doggoneit! Don't leave that behind!" on Storify]

[View the story "Doggoneit! Don't leave that behind!" on Storify]

HOA managers get the Rocky Mountain test

Certification exams for professional managers in any field are common, but not really well known in the property management realm. These exist on a spotty state-by-state basis. Colorado is one state that is embarking upon a new testing system for HOA managers while reports from the area indicate that 25% of those who take their exam are failing, required to take the test a second or third time.

[View the story "Colorado has rocky start to HOA exam" on Storify]

Ward Lucas, formerly of Denver's 9News and now author of the book, "Neighbors at War!," sits down with host Jon Caldara to discuss the dark side of homeowners associations. He is a leading advocate for accountability, transparency, and due diligence in HOA management and governance.
"Very often a change of self is needed more than a change of scene." ~Arthur ... #dailyqotd#qotd — Mike Foxworth (@ALTALOMAN) May 19, 2015

Mitigating CA drought with ersatz lawns

As a rule, the world is not in favor of fake. We all prefer what's natural and original. But until someone comes up with a plan to create artificial rain, fake grass for our lawns may become the partial answer for the long California drought. At least, that's what our California Legislature would have us believe.

[View the story "Grass is greener (if it's fake)" on Storify]

"Don't let life discourage you; everyone who got where he is had to begin whe... #dailyqotd#qotd — Mike Foxworth (@ALTALOMAN) May 18, 2015

Should Americans pay more for H2O?

It has been raining off and on for a couple of days this week in Southern California. How rare is that? The prolonged drought in this region has created a down-poor of media buzz and 'social current see' on water conservation and public policy about water management, particularly within homeowner associations (HOAs and CIDs). But even where rain is plentiful in the United States, if not worldwide, the value of water is a common discussion, as noted in the clips and links that follow.

[View the story "Should Americans pay more for H2O?" on Storify]

"What we see depends mainly on what we look for." ~Sir John Lubbock #dailyqotd#qotd — Mike Foxworth (@ALTALOMAN) May 14, 2015
Examines the issue of why Americans don't recognize the true value of water — Mike Foxworth (@ALTALOMAN) May 15, 2015

Baby boomers and real estate today

The last of the Baby Boomer generation is reaching retirement age. With that reality comes the decision to downsize the home. If you are a Boomer, you may have already made that decision or accomplished that task. If not, the decision is pending and you are just wondering if this is the time to sell, the time to relocate. You may not find a better time than now so now may be the best time to contact your realtor.

[View the story "Good Time For Baby Boomers to Sell?" on Storify]

Millions of us Boomers have arrived at this time: The downsize moment as the GenXers and GenYs explore home buying.… — Mike Foxworth (@ALTALOMAN) May 13, 2015

HOAs have no reason to let reason run dry

Whenever there is a statewide environmental problem like the current California drought, you can bet the problem is magnified for the 43,000+ homeowner associations (HOAs and CIDs) in the state. Water conservation in such communities where the look and feel of green landscaping is paramount, even mandated, a contradiction of goals and desires will certainly arise if irrigation is curtailed. Where homeowners have a collective and corporate obligation to maintain lawn conditions in near-pristine form, a lack of diligence to comply with CC&Rs will spark discipline, fines, and retributions.

[View the story "Drought dents HOA harmony in CA" on Storify]

"They are not poor that have little, but they that desire much. The richest m... #dailyqotd#qotd — Mike Foxworth (@ALTALOMAN) May 9, 2015

CA rains will not solve HOA drought woes

Here in early May, a rare cold front with rain is predicted to drift through Southern California during the next two days (May 7-8), but we will see if the predictions hold true. Often, these do not. Whatever happens, two days of rain will barely make a dent in the drought conditions that now plague the entire region.

The drought will remain a topic for all of the state, particularly for HOAs, many of which continue to have policies that discourage, even prohibit water conservation by homeowners. The 'social current see' of the topic continues to tell the story of "water lust" by these associations, many of which don't mind tapping into a homeowners stash of green (meaning wallet) when those same homeowners may fail to keep their lawns as green as the HOA requires.

[View the story "Lawn lust, a vexing malady for CA HOAs" on Storify]

"I'm a great believer in luck and I find the harder I work, the more I …