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Subject: Your thoughts please
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Author Messages
AllenB1
(Texas)

Posts:15


06/07/2007 9:24 AM  
Hello all,
I have been in a battle with my HOA Board and our management company for many months now. I approached them at the start of this year regarding tougher enforcement of the HOA By-Laws. They replied back and said they would "make sure stricter enforcement took place". So far, they have done nothing! Oh wait, they did change a major By-Law so that two of the Board members were no longer in violation! Besides that- nothing has changed. It has only gotten worse- trailers, trash cans, dead yards, etc. During this time I have emailed the management company over 20 times. The just ignore me. They will reply back and blow smoke up my A##, and then I never hear from them again. So before taking them to court (I have a list of items to file), I decided to go through the BBB. I filled out the paperwork sent it in and the BBB reviewed it. They then sent it on to the management company. The response from the management company was this- "****** does not have a contract with ******. The board of directors of ****** does have a management agreement with ****** to provide management services at the direction of the board. While ****** does collect assessment payments as part of our service agreement, the payments made by ****** are actually for homeowners association dues."

Am I just stupid here? They don't have an contract with me (although I did sign paperwork when I bought my house saying that they were in charge and they would enforce the CC&R's- and this was on their letterhead), but I pay them HOA dues to enforce the CC&R's along with other fees. I thought when you paid someone for goods or services they owed you something in return. Are they not my employees?

Thanks!

HaroldS1
(Arizona)

Posts:314


06/07/2007 10:14 AM  
Welcome to the real world Allen. Until you remove this board and probably the MC they will continue as they have been doing. However, I have to believe the MC is taking their orders from the board.
You need to find enough like minded neighbors who want enforcement and then remove the current board. But probably the majority of your members like the status quo. If you can't get your neighbors to help, you might need to file a lawsuit to make the board follow the CC&Rs they have sworn to uphold. Good luck. Harold
PatrickH
(California)

Posts:204


06/07/2007 10:30 AM  
Hi Allen,

In a nutshell, no, the property management company are not your employees. You didn't hire them, you can't fire them. Their contract is with the HOA which is run by the BOD. The BOD can hire and fire management companies, but an individual can't.

It's the same with any other contractor working for the HOA. You can't fire the landscapers if you don't like the way they mow the lawns, that's a decision for the Board.

The problem is probably with your BOD. They are the ones who decide how strongly to enforce the rules. They are the ones who instruct the manager to send out violation letters, hearing notices and fines for violations. If they're not instructing the manager to do any of these things, then the problem falls squarely on them.
GloriaM
(North Carolina)

Posts:829


06/07/2007 11:05 AM  
Allen:

The MC is a hired Agent to act on behalf of the Board of Directors. A major misconception is that the MC makes decisions, the MC presents the issues to the board and they are the voting and governing body, not the MC.

The MC and their employees are not your employees. As a matter of fact, most MC contracts with an association should read that by entering into a contract that the Agent will assist the Board of Directors of the Association, in the administration of the day-to-day operations of the Association. Agent shall perform the following services in the name of and on behalf of the Association, and the Association hereby gives Agent the authority and powers required to perform these services. Nothing herein shall be construed as creating an employee - employer relationship.
hoatalk
(California)

Posts:574


06/07/2007 11:09 AM  
AllenB1: Please don't post company or individual names here. Please see our posting rules link above the forum or here:

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JoeW1
(New York)

Posts:728


06/08/2007 3:44 PM  
HOATalk,

Curious if you removed names, addresses, etc. from AllenB1's one and only post above your reply because none appeared?

Also have to point out that right above your post is what I would characterize as advertising, or selling, albeit occassional only if that member posts occassionally. Perhaps 10 posts in since March 07 is occassional?

JoeW1
PaulM
(Pennsylvania)

Posts:1347


06/10/2007 6:56 AM  
Allen:
I can sense your frustration in that you feel that the mgmt. company needs to toughen up to enforce the HOA bylaws.
However, this is not the mgmt. company's role. The mgmt. company was correct in advising you that... 'The board of directors of ****** does have a management agreement with ****** to provide management services at the direction of the board.' This is the actual truth. The mgmt. company signs a contract with the Board (usually the President) and acts only at the discretion of the Board.

So, your concerns need to go to your HOA board. The mgmt. company is your community's agent; they can be the advisor, the overseer, the one who reports a violation if they 'see' it, but it is the Board's responsibility to direct the mgmt. company to follow-up with a notice/letter, etc. but the tasks they do are only in keeping with the mgmt. company's contract with the Board. If the mgmt. company's contract states they will keep financial records only, then that is what they will do, no more.

You might ask the Board for a copy of the contract they have with the mgmt. company, and whether the Board feels they are fulfilling their end of the contract. It is the Board who is answerable to you, not the mgmt. company.
Jadedone4
(Virginia)

Posts:495


06/10/2007 7:13 AM  
Paul, I would disgree with you statement (and the BBB's from the original post), that the MC's contractual relationship is with the Board. The MC agreement/contract SHOULD state that it is with the HOA, if the board as an entity wanted it's "own" MC, then the board should reach into their own personal pockets and pay for the service. When the board is using HOA's funds it has no personal use from any vendor, contractor, or agent. The MC is the HOA's "agent" and as such the memebership's "agent" by WAY of the board.

While it is NOT always advisable to have individual owners stopping or involved with a contractor on HOA property, it IS appropriate for membership to have proper access to the MC.

If the poster's comments regarding the BBB and the complaints, where the response was that the contract is between the MC and the HOA, and NOT the individual owner - that is correct. Individual owners do not enter into contractual relationships on behalf of the HOA, the board does.

I would caution the owner to make sure that their complaints are proper and appropriate, and also to ensure that they are communicated to the proper entity. This is ALWAYS the board, and depending on the MC contract/agreement, is sometimes the MC. It is not appropriate for an MC to "dismiss" a member's complaints/emails, etc - by stating that the MC has a contract with simply the board. At best the MC, even if they do not have a "full-service" contract/agreement, is professionally to at the very least forward or inform the board of the member's complaints/issues.
NormanG
(Arizona)

Posts:38


06/10/2007 7:58 AM  
Harold:

Sorry.. but.. what is an MC?
PaulM
(Pennsylvania)

Posts:1347


06/10/2007 12:14 PM  
Jadedone: thanks for your clarification of my post. I agree that the Management Company does have a responsibility to be courteous to all those in the community they manage and all concerns should be relayed to the Board. Yes, the contract is with the association overall. The management company takes direction from the Board and the Board can renew their contract and can relinquish them as well with the appropriate notice given.
GloriaM
(North Carolina)

Posts:829


06/11/2007 9:16 AM  
Norman:

MC is Management Company.
HaroldS1
(Arizona)

Posts:314


06/11/2007 11:05 AM  
The management company takes direction from the Board and the Board can renew their contract and can relinquish them as well with the appropriate notice given.>> IF that relief is spelled out for the HOA in the contract. Harold
AllenB1
(Texas)

Posts:15


06/11/2007 12:41 PM  
Thank you everyone for your posts. I will take ALL of the advise and put it to work. I have requested a copy of the contract and will let you know what it says. Thanks again! p.s. I apologize for having put the names in my original post.
PauG
(Maryland)

Posts:53


06/11/2007 2:39 PM  
Get on your HOA board. That's what I did after I got sick and tried of the board doing nothing to protect property values.
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