Monday, June 28, 2010

Gated communities have ways of getting their fees |

Gated communities have ways of getting their fees |

A Pocono Country Place considered the Sterlins delinquent on all properties and deactivated gate passes held by all of their renters.

It meant that tenants had to go into the community office and register every time they wanted to get through the gate. As a result, many tenants moved out. In Monroe County Court, the Sterlins claimed a loss of $60,000 in rental income and complained that the community wrongfully interfered with their contractual relations with tenants.

Private communities can exert invasive pressure unmatched by municipal tax collectors.

Associations without gates often deny delinquent owners access to amenities such as a pool or other recreation services. Some communities change the key to an owner's mailbox.

At least 56,422 homes are within the borders of private community associations in Monroe and Pike counties. Homes in private associations, some gated, many ungated, account for 38 percent of all housing units in Monroe County and 64 percent in Pike County, according to county and U.S. Census data.


Thanks to Cynthia Stephens for this link.


Anonymous said...

Is it wrong to be less sympathetic to homeowners in gated communities when they're abused by their HOA?

It's not due to any class envy. But unlike a lot of homeowners, these are people who went out of their way to live under a privatized government.

In contrast to the fine print in the typical HOA adhesion contracts that creates the Ayn Randian fiction of "consent," the physical walls and gates are an obvious sign to any potential buyer.

Anonymous said...

> Associations without gates often deny delinquent owners
> access to amenities such as a pool or other recreation services.
> Some communities change the key to an owner's mailbox.

If only that were true.

The journalist who wrote that, and her editors, are obviously ignorant of what associations actually do.

As regular readers of this blog are aware, unlimited fines, expensive litigation against homeowners, liens, and foreclosure are the normal methods that HOA corporations use when owners are "delinquent."

And as regular readers of this blog are also aware, I have to put the word "delinquent" in quotes. In the event of a dispute, HOA corporations often use the priority-of-payments-scam accounting system to create delinquent assessments on paper by applying payments fines and expensive legal fees first -- even if the owner is paying regular assessments.

I don't know about Pennsylvania, but where I live, there are plenty of HOAs that don't have amenities or services. They merely exist because the municipality mandated them and/or the developer created them.

Finally, while I am not a lawyer, I would be surprised if changing locks on somebody's mailbox isn't a federal crime. It's probably one of the few things HOA corporations aren't allowed to do.

Evan McKenzie said...

To say that gated communities cut off gate and amenity access doesn't mean they aren't also using liens and foreclosure.

Anonymous said...

Dr. McKenzie, you are unfortunately right. My experience is the conflict is "created" to disrupt the life of the "targeted," victim (homeowner). Acts of violence, threats, terrorizing, property destruction, they are piling on fabricated charges, so
"they," can move to foreclose. This is the way it works, legal, or not!
In Pennsylvania, where this article is from, it is illegal for these "groups,' to foreclose, but I know, personally, the people it has been done to. Please see a quote from Monroe County, Pennsylvania Representative John Siptroth, pertaining to this very issue.
The comment is based upon the writer asking Representative Siptroth to confirm the fact that only liens may be applied ( two other Pennsylvania State Reps have stated this fact) and where innocent homeowners who have been forced into foreclosure in one of these scams are to go.

"(Persons Name)" "at this time I would suggest the Attorney General’s Office and file a complaint if there was an infraction of the law. It is my understanding that only liens may be filed against property owners who fail to pay assessments placed on them by POA. Act 160 has full description of the law."

John J. Siptroth

189th District

Pike/Monroe Counties

(570) 223-2636

(717) 787-6492
The writer did follow up when Act 160 info was not easily found! They thought Rep. Siptroth was mistaken about the number of the Act and I have heard nothing since!