Tag Archives: community fascism

Are HOAs Facist?

I like pondering this question. Sadly, I can’t find the link for proper attribution. But the blogger talked about a statement made by Franklin Delano Roosevelt to a 1938 session of Congress. Here it is:

“The liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the growth of private power to the point where it becomes stronger than the democratic state itself. That, in essence, is fascism – ownership of government by an individual, by a group or by any controlling private power.”

Whew! Sort of takes your breath away, doesn’t it? By casually stepping into a new form of government called the Homeowners Association movement, are we not giving away all of our Constitutional freedoms without giving it a second thought?

Sure, we’d all like to live in neighborhoods where property values aren’t brought down by some goofball with the muscle car on blocks and a trash can that never leaves the curbside. But at what cost? In the 1930s millions of people joined the Nazi party because they truly thought their membership was bettering themselves. They were truly enthusiastic about where their new party was leading them.

But are we going to sit back some day and ask ourselves, “did we once have something very special in this country, and we gave it all away?”

Ward Lucas
Author of
Neighbors At War: The Creepy Case Against Your Homeowners Association

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Filed under HOA, HOA Horror Stories, Homeowners Association

A Smackdown in Texas

Increasing numbers of homeowners associations across the country have learned there’s profit in being confrontational. Lots of profit. ¬†HOA attorneys advise their clients to attack every violation of the covenants with a vengeance. Insignificant fines often turn into tens of thousands of dollars in fees, fines, collection costs and attorneys’ expenses. Some of those confrontations defy common sense.

Ted Faraz of Irving, Texas, found that out the hard way. He installed some solar panels on his roof. His intent wasn’t malicious. He wasn’t doing it to intentionally anger his HOA. He actually invested $15,000 in an effort to be more environmentally responsible.

His solar panels couldn’t be seen from the street. In fact, only one neighbor could see them and that neighbor said they didn’t bother him at all.

But the Ranch Valley HOA felt differently. They began fining Faraz $50 for each day the solar panels remained. It got worse. The HOA filed a lien and began to foreclose on Faraz’s house.

Faraz felt it was a blatant case of extortion. There was no real point for the HOA to prove. It was always about publicly slamming down a homeowner who strayed outside the rules.

The Homeowners Association has proven one thing, though: that young starry-eyed prospective homeowners would be wise to avoid the Ranch Valley HOA.

Avoid it like the plague.

With homeowners associations across the country taking a nose-dive in real estate values specifically because of this kind of community fascism, homeowners would be well-advised to look elsewhere for a new place to live.

Ward Lucas
Author of
Neighbors At War: The Creepy Case Against Your Homeowners Association

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Filed under HOA, HOA Horror Stories, Homeowners Association