Tag Archives: Texas HOA

Can You Say “SUSPICIOUS?”

At long last a Texas HOA is getting some much-deserved attention. Sadly, it took a homeowners lawsuit to get the ball rolling.
Folks in the Sunchase HOA in Northeast Austin are wondering where a million bucks went. It just kind of wandered off someplace. It’s illegal for a Texas HOA not to have regular audits of their books. Of course, it’s also illegal to filch a million bucks, IF that’s what happened. And Sunchase hasn’t had an audit for at least five years.

The property manager, Nancy Thompson keeps the HOA’s money in several different banks. But for some reason, she won’t let board members or homeowners see any of her bank statements. Board members are also question why Thompson was given thousands of dollars in bonuses. Austin Police are sniffing around. Between them and the lawyers, we may see some future news stories.

Good reporting by Chris Willis of KXAN.

http://www.kxan.com/dpp/news/investigations/lawsuit-filed-in-hoa-money-dispute

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, Las Vegas HOA

Texas Takes Aim Against Another Serviceman

Bill Fry, an officer with the Army National guard, was returning from fighting in Iraq. All of a sudden he learned his HOA, The Spring Lake HOA of Mineoloa, Texas, had filed a lawsuit against him and his family because they put up the swingset to keep his kids company while he was gone.

It’s not an outrageous swingset. It’s not candy apple red and doesn’t flash with florescent colored lights. It’s just a nice wood and canvas politically correct swingset. But the officials at Spring Lake have gone apoplectic. They want it taken down, NOW!

Fry says the HOA approved the swingset before he left for Afghanistan. But the new board claims Fry’s wife didn’t get final approval and obtain final plans. It’s not that the swingset is wrong. It’s that someone on the board had a bruised ego because she wasn’t personally asked for her permission. There’s a chapter in my upcoming book, “Neighbors At War” which scientifically shows the changing chemistry in the brain when someone feels they’re not being awarded enough power over others.

In any event, whatever compromise Fry attempts to make, the HOA turns him down flat.
Spring Lake HOA, in Mineola, Texas. It might be nice to visit. But I sure as Hell wouldn’t want to live there.

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

Homeowner Association Beaten by a Pig!

Wilbur the Pig’s family had to spend thousands of dollars defending their pet pig. So did the Harris County, Texas HOA, which did everything it could to have Wilbur thrown to the wolves. Wilbur is a Vietnamese pot-bellied pig, an extremely intelligent species which has been bred as housepets. Tens of thousands of pig owners say they make marvelous companions.

But The Thicket at Cypresswood Community Improvement Association thought otherwise. Just the thought that the Alex Sardo family was keeping a non-traditional pet in their home threw the HOA into histrionics. Threats to sue, threats to poison, threats of vandalism, threats to seize the Sardo home and sell it at auction.

Wilbur finally got his day in court, and for once a District Court Judge was not friendly to an HOA. He ruled that the evidence was clear that this breed of pig is definitely considered a household pet. But Judge Mike Engelhart went further. He warned that Homeowners Associations have a responsibility not to infringe too much on homeowners’ use of their land. He said it’s time to set a precedent: that Homeowners Associations cannot micromanage their residents behavior.

There was obvious pissing and moaning on the HOA side of the room. There’s no word on whether the Sardo family will be awarded legal fees. It will be a tragedy if they don’t get back every dime in this stupid dispute. It would also be true justice if a special assessment had to be levied against the whole neighborhood to pay for the wasted legal expenses.

Sadly, this won’t be the end of the story. Beware the “neighborhood nazi.” The Sardo family is going to be made just as miserable as this HOA dares.

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Filed under HOA, HOA Horror Stories, Homeowners Association