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Subject: Recently Discovered HOA Does Not Own the Common Areas
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Author Messages
GwendolenM
(Georgia)

Posts:5


06/23/2018 6:42 PM  
Good afternoon,

I live in a community where homeowners recently discovered that the HOA DOES NOT own the common areas. The subdivisions also do not have any amenities. Yet, it - the HOA - is still trying to charge a mandated assessment fee. Is this legal?
AugustinD


Posts:1139


06/23/2018 7:32 PM  
Gwendolyn, ask to see the HOA's annual budget. Go to your County Clerk's to view the "plats" for your location. The plats typically indicate what is and what is not common area.
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:7713


06/23/2018 7:49 PM  
Need a bit more details. Who owns it if your HOA doesn't? What makes you think the HOA doesn't own common property? Do you have a copy of the CC&R's? Is the Developer still in the picture? Why are dues being collected?

Former HOA President
GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:746


06/23/2018 7:57 PM  
And, it sounds like you don’t want to pay an assessment - do you benefit from the assessment payments that you and others make?

If you do, it would seem fair to try and help the community find out how to continue to manage and take care of itself, right?
GwendolenM
(Georgia)

Posts:5


06/25/2018 7:19 AM  
Oh, George, I want our community to be maintained. However, I found an environmentally-safe solution that is only going to cost our particular community $5.00 per homeowner - yes, you read that right - to maintain (we only have grass in our community, and not that much). However, I don't want to be illegally mandated to pay a fee that I don't owe to the HOA.
GwendolenM
(Georgia)

Posts:5


06/25/2018 7:21 AM  
The developer still owns all of the common areas, and no taxes have been paid on the land since 2007. It's been confirmed by a Georgia-based attorney. Thanks for responding!
GwendolenM
(Georgia)

Posts:5


06/25/2018 7:26 AM  
Everything's been confirmed. The common areas are still owned by the developer. Even the HOA president and owner of the property management company eventually admitted that it (the HOA) and the homeowners do not own the common areas.

P.S. It's interesting to note that during a recent HOA meeting, the owner of this property management company began her presentation by stating that the HOA and homeowners did own the common areas. Once a question was posed about taxes not being paid on the common areas since 2007, the owner of this company admitted that the neither the HOA nor the homeowners owned the common areas. Her admission was followed by the president of the HOA's admission that it (HOA) and homeowners did not own the common areas.
AugustinD


Posts:1139


06/25/2018 7:31 AM  
Get a copy of the Declaration, Bylaws, et cetera. Identify (1) when the HOA has to be turned over to the members; (2) what rights you have while the developer is in control; and (3) how the assessment is set.
BarbaraT1
(Texas)

Posts:103


06/25/2018 10:34 AM  
Is your community under developer or homeowner control?

Sometimes the developers wait to deed the common properties to the Association. Sometimes they forget to do it before transition and it gets overlooked for years.

I've had this happen a few times in my career as a manager. In one case, I took over a new property, go the tax assessments, saw that one area was missing, and discovered that this one parcel hadn't been deeded over even though the developer hadn't been in the picture for several years.

I have also had a homeowner make the same argument you have and filed suit. The judge determined that based on the plat, the intent was that these areas be the common property of the HOA and the developer's failure to deed them over was simply an oversight.

GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:746


06/25/2018 12:20 PM  
Hmmm ... so, these are not common areas - they can't be if someone else owns them, right?
GwendolenM
(Georgia)

Posts:5


06/26/2018 8:50 AM  
Thank you for your reply! We have decided to vote to dissolve the HOA and have discovered a much more affordable plan for maintaining the landscape.
JanetB2
(Colorado)

Posts:4151


06/29/2018 12:28 AM  
Posted By GwendolenM on 06/25/2018 7:26 AM
Everything's been confirmed. The common areas are still owned by the developer. Even the HOA president and owner of the property management company eventually admitted that it (the HOA) and the homeowners do not own the common areas.

P.S. It's interesting to note that during a recent HOA meeting, the owner of this property management company began her presentation by stating that the HOA and homeowners did own the common areas. Once a question was posed about taxes not being paid on the common areas since 2007, the owner of this company admitted that the neither the HOA nor the homeowners owned the common areas. Her admission was followed by the president of the HOA's admission that it (HOA) and homeowners did not own the common areas.


Sounds like my last HOA where the Developer had not deeded the common area yet to the HOA (which violated State Law as was supposed to be deeded prior to selling properties). LOL ... when developer wanted to start charging HOA fees and I asked what the fees were to pay for ... when stated for the common area property. My response was the HOA did NOT own any common area property ... YEP threw them for a loop and which was finally fixed.

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