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Subject: HOA and Military Member
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Author Messages
MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:382


06/05/2021 4:55 PM  
Posted By AugustinD on 06/05/2021 4:11 PM
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/05/2021 2:59 PM

You have to have membership approval to obtain a loan
If the OP's governing documents require membership approval for this sort of loan, then sure. But the OP has provided nothing indicating his HOA/COA's governing docs require membership aporoval to obtain a loan.

The interested California reader should see:

https://www.davis-stirling.com/HOME/Authority-to-Borrow

https://www.davis-stirling.com/HOME/Capital-Improvement

https://www.davis-stirling.com/HOME/Bank-Loan-Checklist#axzz3hm0fTEMV


and also a vote for the special assessment to fund the project.
It's not clear whether a special assessment was made.

You don't go to the courts to get CCRs approved if the membership voted no.
This is far from accurate. California Civil Code 4275 and case law elaborate. For starters, more at https://www.davis-stirling.com/HOME/Court-Petition-Re-CC-Rs

The facts are lacking here. Is the HOA/COA in a bad way when it comes to water bills and its budget? Exactly what did the old covenants say? Has the Court granted approval of the proposed restated CC&Rs? I think it's likely that this is the first time that TomP11 has seen a lot of the vocabulary here. Is he overwhelmed just trying to understand many of the questions being put to him, never mind answer them?

Mostly I think he just wants an employee of the sub meter company to call him and say, "Sure, we'll wait until such-and-such date to do your unit." Maybe this will happen.



Like I said, you will gt the award for the "Google Whiz Kid"

Court Approval. The court may, but is not required to, grant the petition if it finds all of the following:

1. The membership was given at least 15 days written notice of the court hearing.
2. Balloting on the proposed amendment was conducted in accordance with the governing documents.
3. A reasonably diligent effort was made to permit all eligible members to vote on the proposed amendment.
4. More than 50% of the membership voted in favor of the amendment. (Peak Investments v. South Peak HOA)
5. The amendment is reasonable.
6. Granting the petition is not improper for any reason stated in subdivision (e) of the statute.
TomP11
(California)

Posts:25


06/05/2021 4:56 PM  
AugustinD,

Every unit has their own main shut-off valve and each building has a shut-off valve. That valve is for both the hot and cold water. It branches off at the hot water heater. I hope that explains it some. Chances are I am going to give them my temporary garage code. There is a keypad outside of the door. Again I am just upset that their whole thing is you were not home and we know that so we are going to kick down your door and charge you everyday until you get it fixed.
AugustinD


Posts:601


06/05/2021 5:13 PM  
Posted By TomP11 on 06/05/2021 4:56 PM
Every unit has their own main shut-off valve and each building has a shut-off valve. That valve is for both the hot and cold water.
Excellent.

FWIW: This site has a lot of discussion about how, even though the covenants say an association may enter a unit without permission for maintenance and repairs yada, competent HOA/COA attorneys advise boards not to enter without permission unless it is truly an emergency. As some have pointed out, this is arguably no emergency. I do not appreciate the contractor likely bluffing. Someone on the contractor's side; board's side; or manager's side is darned determined to get this sub-metering done and pronto. I wonder if budget pressures are playing a huge role here.

It is quite a step to transfer responsibility for, say, the roofs from the association to the individual units. I do not think this has ever come up here. Then the judge approved this. Wow. It does make me think all he-- has broken loose with this HOA/COA's finances, and this is what the HOA/COA attorney explained to the judge.

I hope this works out for all sides here. I realize it's not pleasant being thousands of miles away, from home and family, and having to deal with this.
MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:382


06/05/2021 5:18 PM  
Posted By AugustinD on 06/05/2021 4:44 PM
Posted By TomP11 on 06/05/2021 12:55 PM
They want the sub-meter installed next to the hot water heater. Maybe so they do not have to search for it.
Maybe each unit does not have its own main shut-off valve. Instead, each unit has a shut-off valve for the hot water heater, and that's it. Whence the salespeople at the sub-meter company convinced this COA to use a RUBS ("Ratio Utility Billing System," allowed in some but not all California cities). Under RUBS, a condo/townhome unit's overall water usage is estimated based on the new sub-meter's measurement of only the unit's hot water use. This sucks eggs, and this is why it is illegal in many cities.


AND THE HITS JUST KEEP ON COMING!

You don't use RUBS when you have sub-metering.

https://www.synergyutilitybilling.com/submetering-vs-rubs/
AugustinD


Posts:601


06/05/2021 5:43 PM  
Posted By AugustinD on 06/05/2021 4:11 PM
You don't go to the courts to get CCRs approved if the membership voted no.
This is far from accurate. California Civil Code 4275 and case law elaborate. For starters, more at https://www.davis-stirling.com/HOME/Court-Petition-Re-CC-Rs


To which MaxB4 rejoined:

Posted By MaxB4 on 06/05/2021 4:55 PM
[PUI-ing redacted]Court Approval. The court may, but is not required to, grant the petition if it finds all of the following:

1. The membership was given at least 15 days written notice of the court hearing.
2. Balloting on the proposed amendment was conducted in accordance with the governing documents.
3. A reasonably diligent effort was made to permit all eligible members to vote on the proposed amendment.

4. More than 50% of the membership voted in favor of the amendment. (Peak Investments v. South Peak HOA)

5. The amendment is reasonable.
6. Granting the petition is not improper for any reason stated in subdivision (e) of the statute.
TomP11 reported that ""[t]he homeowners voted not to change the CCRs." You appear to have jumped to the conclusion that this means that less than 50+% voted in favor of the amendments. But the homeowners voting no could very well mean that the required percentage to pass the amendments was 67%, yet only 61% voted in favor of the amendments.

Per TomP11's subsequent report, the judge approved the association's petition to restate the covenants.
AugustinD


Posts:601


06/05/2021 5:44 PM  
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/05/2021 5:18 PM

You don't use RUBS when you have sub-metering.

https://www.synergyutilitybilling.com/submetering-vs-rubs/
Sorry, that's not accurate. There are various ways of using RUBS, including with a submetering system.
MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:382


06/05/2021 5:50 PM  
Posted By AugustinD on 06/05/2021 5:44 PM
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/05/2021 5:18 PM

You don't use RUBS when you have sub-metering.

https://www.synergyutilitybilling.com/submetering-vs-rubs/
Sorry, that's not accurate. There are various ways of using RUBS, including with a submetering system.



Please explain
AugustinD


Posts:601


06/05/2021 5:54 PM  
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/05/2021 5:50 PM
Posted By AugustinD on 06/05/2021 5:44 PM
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/05/2021 5:18 PM

You don't use RUBS when you have sub-metering.

https://www.synergyutilitybilling.com/submetering-vs-rubs/
Sorry, that's not accurate. There are various ways of using RUBS, including with a submetering system.



Please explain
I already did. See above.

Besides, you're dug into your position. You never recant. Silence would be your best response here.
MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:382


06/05/2021 5:59 PM  
Posted By AugustinD on 06/05/2021 5:43 PM
Posted By AugustinD on 06/05/2021 4:11 PM
You don't go to the courts to get CCRs approved if the membership voted no.
This is far from accurate. California Civil Code 4275 and case law elaborate. For starters, more at https://www.davis-stirling.com/HOME/Court-Petition-Re-CC-Rs


To which MaxB4 rejoined:

Posted By MaxB4 on 06/05/2021 4:55 PM
[PUI-ing redacted]Court Approval. The court may, but is not required to, grant the petition if it finds all of the following:

1. The membership was given at least 15 days written notice of the court hearing.
2. Balloting on the proposed amendment was conducted in accordance with the governing documents.
3. A reasonably diligent effort was made to permit all eligible members to vote on the proposed amendment.

4. More than 50% of the membership voted in favor of the amendment. (Peak Investments v. South Peak HOA)

5. The amendment is reasonable.
6. Granting the petition is not improper for any reason stated in subdivision (e) of the statute.
TomP11 reported that ""[t]he homeowners voted not to change the CCRs." You appear to have jumped to the conclusion that this means that less than 50+% voted in favor of the amendments. But the homeowners voting no could very well mean that the required percentage to pass the amendments was 67%, yet only 61% voted in favor of the amendments.

Per TomP11's subsequent report, the judge approved the association's petition to restate the covenants.



Homeowners votingNOT to change the CCRs and not having enough votes are two different scenarios. Thus my posting.
MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:382


06/05/2021 6:01 PM  
Posted By AugustinD on 06/05/2021 5:54 PM
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/05/2021 5:50 PM
Posted By AugustinD on 06/05/2021 5:44 PM
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/05/2021 5:18 PM

You don't use RUBS when you have sub-metering.

https://www.synergyutilitybilling.com/submetering-vs-rubs/
Sorry, that's not accurate. There are various ways of using RUBS, including with a submetering system.



Please explain
I already did. See above.

Besides, you're dug into your position. You never recant. Silence would be your best response here.



You're a flat out fraud.
MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:382


06/05/2021 6:46 PM  
Posted By AugustinD on 06/05/2021 5:54 PM
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/05/2021 5:50 PM
Posted By AugustinD on 06/05/2021 5:44 PM
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/05/2021 5:18 PM

You don't use RUBS when you have sub-metering.

https://www.synergyutilitybilling.com/submetering-vs-rubs/
Sorry, that's not accurate. There are various ways of using RUBS, including with a submetering system.



Please explain
I already did. See above.

Besides, you're dug into your position. You never recant. Silence would be your best response here.



Let me clarify my statement of you being a fraud. There are not many topics I comment here, but will do so when I have the expertise. Augustin, what you do is just google the $hit out of everything. Nothing comes from "so-called" experience. Worst part, it seems you don't even read the material you googled.

RUBS uses various forms of estimating. Sub-Metering is reading a meter, take last reading, subtract from current reading and bill for ACTUAL usage, from two different points in time.

For your viewing pleasure...

https://www.submeter.com/rubs-billing/
SheliaH
(Indiana)

Posts:3973


06/05/2021 8:55 PM  
Posted By TomP11 on 06/05/2021 12:55 PM
SheliaH,

Thank you. They are not entering my living space; they are entering the garage. My HOA does not provide any maintenance service for inside the condo. We do not have a fire system and there is no one above or below my unit. I am trying to paint a picture, basically if you drive by you would think it is a two story condo that shares a wall. The two car garage in in front and connect one level up is the living space. There is nothing above the garage. If a pipe leaks that is my responsibility, the HOA would not come in and fix it. If the main water line was to leak, which it has, it is on me to fix it.

I did contact the property management company back in May when they sent the emails saying that they will start the project sometime during May and ending in June. The property management company gave me the contact information for the contractor. I contacted the contractor explaining the situation when they would get to my condo. They could not give me an answer because they didn’t know how long it was going to take or the order of buildings. What is upsetting is the phone call and email I received from the contractor saying that they are going to break into my garage and fine me for doing so. I contacted the property management company and they basically said oh well.

For me is more like I am paying to live here at $500 for HOA dues a month. You are a contractor and the property manager and that is how you are going to treat the owners of the place. I have a temporary code for the garage door and a camera in the garage.

More details. They want the sub-meter installed next to the hot water heater. Maybe so they do not have to search for it. Mine is located inside the garage probably for looks. I am on an end unit. The two neighbors two neighbors who are in between the end unites have their hot water heaters on the outside on their deck. The owners who live in the two story buildings have it behind their garage. I just don’t understand why can’t just install the meters on the other side of the garage where all the utilities enter the unit and where we have the A/C. If it is for looks.



It seems your beef is mostly with the contractors, who I think were rude for telling you they'd break into your garage and fine you. If you could prove you on active duty (I would think your orders would be all you needed), they'd make an effort to work with you.

In reading through all this, I didn't see where you've contacted the board about any of this - if you haven't, that's your next step. A zillion years ago, I seem to recall the Army had some sort of department at the forts who assisted active duty personnel with consumer-oriented issues. The fort in my area is long closed, but perhaps you can check if such a department is still available and it could intercede on your behalf. I won't get into the sub-meter issue (let Max and AugustinD hash that out), but if this thing is going to be installed somewhere in your unit, focus on finding a way to get that done, and then talk to the board. Talk to your neighbors too and see if someone would be willing to come to your house (garage) while the work is done.

And start thinking right now how you're going to handle these issues in the future - you already know the interior is your responsibility, so if you can't find a way to address this, what will happen if a pipe or whatever in your home bursts? I know what you're saying about being far away - when I came across this discussion I was in my hometown checking on my mother's home. It's out of state (3 hour drive) and my mother is in a memory care facility, and when she fell ill, there was (and still is) a lot I didn't know about the house, other than I grew up in it. This last trip uncovered an issue that will now require me to return sooner than I'd planned because I'll need to get a plumber to take a look at what may be a brewing issue that needs to be addressed sooner rather than later.
TomP11
(California)

Posts:25


06/05/2021 9:16 PM  
SheliaH,

Again, that you for your help. We can’t directly talk to HOA members about HOA issues. We have to go through the property management company. At least that is what they say when homeowner bring issues up during the HOA meetings. I have contacted the property management company and they said oh well. I am not too worried about water issues, it doesn’t rain that much where I live so I am not too worried about the roof. I turn off the water and gas when I leave in addition to unplugging mostly everything. Mail is located in the garage.

I did reach out to legal as well on a post that is walking distance from where my home is. I hope they respond to my email on Monday and give some assistance.
BenA2
(Texas)

Posts:886


06/06/2021 4:28 AM  
"The Owner shall provide the Association access as needed for maintenance or repair work by the Association."

This line seems pretty clear that you have to provide access. It is normal for management companies to need access to condos for emergencies and maintenance. After all, what happens in one unit can have an effect on others. It sounds like you didn't make arrangements for someone to be able to access the condo when you are gone.

I would work with the HOA as much as possible. Maybe you can send someone a key so they don't have to break in. It might be reasonable for the HOA to arrange for installing your meter later if you were willing to pay the extra cost (I'm guessing they are saving money by having all the meters installed at the same time).

I seriously doubt the HOA arbitrarily decided to access everyone's condo if it isn't necessary. I'm not a plumber, but it makes sense that they would have to gain access to each unit for the installation of new meters.

CathyA3
(Ohio)

Posts:2021


06/06/2021 5:29 AM  
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/05/2021 6:46 PM
... snippage ...

Let me clarify my statement of you being a fraud. There are not many topics I comment here, but will do so when I have the expertise. Augustin, what you do is just google the $hit out of everything. Nothing comes from "so-called" experience. Worst part, it seems you don't even read the material you googled.

RUBS uses various forms of estimating. Sub-Metering is reading a meter, take last reading, subtract from current reading and bill for ACTUAL usage, from two different points in time.

For your viewing pleasure...

https://www.submeter.com/rubs-billing/



I know I should stay out of this, but I'm getting tired of the name-calling. And saying that "nothing comes from 'so-called' experience" is actually humorously wrong.

Many of us provide Google references in our answers. You do it yourself. They provide useful information for the OP who may know nothing about the topic at hand (and for the rest of us who are reading along).

You may or may not be an expert in your field - this is the internet, after all - but true experts know that they don't know everything. If you're lucky, you'll be an expert in a field that regularly upends commonly-held beliefs, so you get reminded of your ignorance daily. And many regular posters have been around long enough to know that there is always that one HOA or that one situation that is an outlier or has some unusual features that we haven't encountered before.

Disagree all you want, but please knock off the disagreeable. You're undermining your own credibility, and it does nothing to help the OP.
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:10247


06/06/2021 6:05 AM  
Well said Cathy...

Real life situation. We had a house involve in our foreclosure situation. Long story... Anyways the house was left unoccupied. Winter hit and pipes froze. Upstairs bathroom pipe broke. Water flooded the downstairs. The HOA had no key or right to enter. A neighbor was able to secure a key somehow. I went in to check. Entire place was destroyed. All we could do is make sure water shut off atmthe street.

The house became quite moldy and had to sit for a year. No one couldmtouch it. If we had not "broken in" that house would have been much worse.

So I can not get the reasoning why do not give a copy of a key to someone. It just is reasonable sense.

Former HOA President
SheliaH
(Indiana)

Posts:3973


06/06/2021 8:43 AM  
Posted By TomP11 on 06/05/2021 9:16 PM
SheliaH,

Again, that you for your help. We can’t directly talk to HOA members about HOA issues. We have to go through the property management company. At least that is what they say when homeowner bring issues up during the HOA meetings. I have contacted the property management company and they said oh well. I am not too worried about water issues, it doesn’t rain that much where I live so I am not too worried about the roof. I turn off the water and gas when I leave in addition to unplugging mostly everything. Mail is located in the garage.

I did reach out to legal as well on a post that is walking distance from where my home is. I hope they respond to my email on Monday and give some assistance.




Well that's interesting - sounds like tail wagging dog to me. The property manager is supposed to work at the board's direction and the board should be responsive to the owners who elect them (and recall them, If warranted). I understand going to the property manager for routine maintenance of the common areas, but some things should be the board's issue and you shouldn't have to go through the property manager to discuss it with them.

send the board a letter - if there are emails you can use, send it to everyone on the board (and perhaps copy your attorney). If that doesn't get someone to talk to you like an adult, I think you may have no choice but to let an attorney handle this. I'm sorry it may come to that, but sometimes people are buttholes and need to be called out on it.
AugustinD


Posts:601


06/06/2021 8:45 AM  
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/05/2021 6:46 PM
Let me clarify my statement of you [self-contradicting nonsense redacted]
MaxB4, you asserted that, "You don't go to the courts to get CCRs approved if the membership voted no." You quickly clarifed that you meant a less than 50+% vote is a no vote, so the OP's COA/HOA must have broken the law. Wrong. A "no vote" for amending the covenants is any percentage of the owners that is less than the percnetage that the governing documents require to amend. As you either know or forgot, what the governing documents require is typically a super-majority. Hence California courts may, if other conditions are met, approve a restatement of covenants, presented to the court by a HOA/COA Board, even when the membership votes no to the restatement.

You won't own your mistake. You should man up and do so. Why? Because people are more likely to trust you in the future.

My position on RUBS and sub-metering comes from direct experience with several vendors along with the aforementioned engineering licenses (all three obtainable only by achieving a certain number of years of experience in specific engineering professions). The vendors explained that a condo community, where each unit had only a hot water heater shut-off valve and no main shut-off valve, most certainly could be sub-metered. The vendors consistently explained that the COA would simply use software that estimated each unit's total monthly water usage using a (crude, thieving afaic) formula that assumed a certain amount of total (hot and cold) water usage for each gallon of hot water used. Anyone can call around and confirm that sub-metering companies are happy to offer such a package to those condo associations unfortunate enough not to have a main water shutoff valve for each unit. You won't. But I am posting for the archives.

AugustinD


Posts:601


06/06/2021 9:11 AM  
My vote for the bottom line:
Posted By MelissaP1 on 06/06/2021 6:05 AM
Real life situation. We had a house involve in our foreclosure situation. Long story... Anyways the house was left unoccupied. Winter hit and pipes froze. Upstairs bathroom pipe broke. Water flooded the downstairs. The HOA had no key or right to enter. A neighbor was able to secure a key somehow. I went in to check. Entire place was destroyed. All we could do is make sure water shut off at the street.

The house became quite moldy and had to sit for a year. No one could touch it. If we had not "broken in" that house would have been much worse.

So I can not get the reasoning why [an owner] [does] not give a copy of a key to someone. It just is reasonable sense.

MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:382


06/06/2021 10:20 AM  
Posted By CathyA3 on 06/06/2021 5:29 AM
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/05/2021 6:46 PM
... snippage ...

Let me clarify my statement of you being a fraud. There are not many topics I comment here, but will do so when I have the expertise. Augustin, what you do is just google the $hit out of everything. Nothing comes from "so-called" experience. Worst part, it seems you don't even read the material you googled.

RUBS uses various forms of estimating. Sub-Metering is reading a meter, take last reading, subtract from current reading and bill for ACTUAL usage, from two different points in time.

For your viewing pleasure...

https://www.submeter.com/rubs-billing/



I know I should stay out of this, but I'm getting tired of the name-calling. And saying that "nothing comes from 'so-called' experience" is actually humorously wrong.

Many of us provide Google references in our answers. You do it yourself. They provide useful information for the OP who may know nothing about the topic at hand (and for the rest of us who are reading along).

You may or may not be an expert in your field - this is the internet, after all - but true experts know that they don't know everything. If you're lucky, you'll be an expert in a field that regularly upends commonly-held beliefs, so you get reminded of your ignorance daily. And many regular posters have been around long enough to know that there is always that one HOA or that one situation that is an outlier or has some unusual features that we haven't encountered before.

Disagree all you want, but please knock off the disagreeable. You're undermining your own credibility, and it does nothing to help the OP.



You should stay out of this.

If you would have read what I said, was I don't comment on everything, ONLY on those subject where I have the expertise. Yep, I do google information, and I will post those links, AFTER I read the article(s).I posted 4 articles stating RUBS and sub-metering are not the same. Without proof, he continues to say they are. This has nothing to do with a disagreeable.

One of my departments conducts elections. As of today, we have done 18. Seven were for direction elections while 11 dealt with special assessments. I know the different of voting no and not having enough votes or affirmative votes. For example, 100 units, quorum is a majority or 51 and 40 ballots are cast for a special assessment, with 29 approving the assessment and 11 voting no. While an overwhelming number of owners voted yes, the measure failed as not enough ballots were received. If it were reversed and 29 voted no and 11 voted yes, then hopefully you would agree that the homeowners voted no.
TomP11
(California)

Posts:25


06/06/2021 10:34 AM  
BenA2

Thank you for your response and staying on topic. My beef is the letter and phone call I received from the contractor. Especially since I have been trying to work with them.

I understand that they may need to enter for emergency. My HOA does not provide any maintenance inside the condo. In fact with the new CC&Rs they do not provide maintenance for the outside of the condo either. This includes utilities. When I moved in I had a problem with the cable line and the HOA pointed it out to me that everything from the utilities box, located on the far end of my building, is the responsibility of the owner. So if the water line from the main shut-off was to become damaged, we would have to pay to correct that problem. I just do not understand how installing a sub-meter is an emergency. I first I thought it was because it could not be under the elements; however, some units are having their meters installed on the outside. Next I thought it was for looks, but on one would be able to see it if it is installed on the outside of the garage. The main point on what I get is to force us to fix leaking pipes. I understand that. But where they are installing the meter if the pipe was to break before the meter why would I want to pay to get it fix? The HOA wants us to be responsible for the pipes there is a good 15 car garage length from the main cutoff to my unit.

For the key, my father and a friend has a key. Plus Amazon delivers packages in my garage all the time. My beef is the way they are doing it. I have been contacting the contractor and property management company asking when they would get to my unit and all they have been doing was giving me the runaround. I am guessing you can see the frustration when they send a phone call and an email saying that they are going to break in can charge me $25 a day because my garage would be unsecured. They could have asked for the passcode for the garage, which has a temporary one for that reason.

A lot of people keep saying that if something was to happen to my condo it would cause problems form my neighbors. The only issue that I would see would be fire. But at that point it would be the fire department not the HOA. I do not live in an area where freezing pipes are an issue. If the pipes are to become damage in anyway it would not cause problems for my neighbors.
MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:382


06/06/2021 10:40 AM  
Posted By AugustinD on 06/06/2021 8:45 AM
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/05/2021 6:46 PM
Let me clarify my statement of you [self-contradicting nonsense redacted]
MaxB4, you asserted that, "You don't go to the courts to get CCRs approved if the membership voted no." You quickly clarifed that you meant a less than 50+% vote is a no vote, so the OP's COA/HOA must have broken the law. Wrong. A "no vote" for amending the covenants is any percentage of the owners that is less than the percnetage that the governing documents require to amend. As you either know or forgot, what the governing documents require is typically a super-majority. Hence California courts may, if other conditions are met, approve a restatement of covenants, presented to the court by a HOA/COA Board, even when the membership votes no to the restatement.

You won't own your mistake. You should man up and do so. Why? Because people are more likely to trust you in the future.

My position on RUBS and sub-metering comes from direct experience with several vendors along with the aforementioned engineering licenses (all three obtainable only by achieving a certain number of years of experience in specific engineering professions). The vendors explained that a condo community, where each unit had only a hot water heater shut-off valve and no main shut-off valve, most certainly could be sub-metered. The vendors consistently explained that the COA would simply use software that estimated each unit's total monthly water usage using a (crude, thieving afaic) formula that assumed a certain amount of total (hot and cold) water usage for each gallon of hot water used. Anyone can call around and confirm that sub-metering companies are happy to offer such a package to those condo associations unfortunate enough not to have a main water shutoff valve for each unit. You won't. But I am posting for the archives.




So did they install a sub-meter and then use RUBS to do the billing?

So, most Condos include water in their dues as nearly all don't have separate meters to the units. Which is the more ethical choice? Everyone pays the same, based on square footage, or the thieving method of RUBS?
TomP11
(California)

Posts:25


06/06/2021 10:51 AM  
MelissaP1,

My father and friend has a key to my place. The HOA does not accept keys most likely for liability issues. I inform the property management company when I leave and for how long. In addition, I give them a forwarding address plus contact information and I always return that contact information sheet every year.

My issue is that I have been trying to work with the contractor and property management company on when they will be expecting to conduct work on my unit. It isn’t reasonable to ask someone to take off from work for two months. To get an email and phone call from the contractor telling me that they are going to break into my place and charge me $25 a day is unacceptable.
MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:382


06/06/2021 11:01 AM  
Posted By TomP11 on 06/05/2021 4:26 PM
MaxB4,

Yes, they do plan on repaying back the loan from the promised savings. They are not lowering dues.



I was thinking about this and I'm going to guess where the "savings promised" is coming from. Since they aren't lowering the dues, they are using those funds to pay for the project, it's not from savings. In essence, they created a special assessment without a vote.

I prepare 50 annual budgets for board and in a case like this I would set up a separate income category for the repayment of the loan, as well as a separate income category for the new water billing, unless the local water company is doing the billing. If the local water company is not doing the billing, you will have added expense of billing and collecting. If a local water company is handling the billing, they may be able to shut off water for delinquent account, if the HOA is doing the billing, you need a court case to proceed.
TomP11
(California)

Posts:25


06/06/2021 11:04 AM  
MaxB4,

Our water is included in our dues which is why they can’t start charging us until January. Which I don’t understand why the rush.
TomP11
(California)

Posts:25


06/06/2021 11:13 AM  
MaxB4,

The local water company is not involved in the billing, the HOA is hiring a company aka the contractor to do the billing. I already know what is going to happen, we are going to have a water bill plus an extra fee that the contractor is going to charge and an additional fee called a convenience fee to pay the bill.
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:10247


06/06/2021 11:18 AM  
Having gone through a separate water meter situation there are great benefit to separate water meters. Originally our HOA had 1 water meter. If you did not pay your dues they could shut off your water. This was in the CC&R's stating as such. The HOA paid the water bill. The monthly dues at that time were 75 a month. The change to the individual meters changed it to 50 a month. It did take a 500 special assessment to get the separated meters of 107 owners. Which took several years to collect and change in the CC&R's.

Now what your NOT factoring in is the cost of repairs. A broken pipe repair to an individual unit can costs hundreds to thousands of dollars to repair. All of which has come out of the HOA's budget. Hence why the water bill portion of the dues were so high. With the separate meters the water department is responsible for the repairs from the street to the meter. The owner is responsible for Meter to house to repair.

The HOA is trying to limit the responsibility of ALL owners having to pay for one members water repair bill. When the HOA has to pay something it means ALL members have to pay. That causes higher dues or assessments in the long run. Individual meters limited that greatly.

Former HOA President
AugustinD


Posts:601


06/06/2021 11:23 AM  
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/06/2021 10:40 AM
So, most Condos include water in their dues as nearly all don't have separate meters to the units.
I do not know if it is most. Reports are that it's a lot.

​Which is the more ethical choice? Everyone pays the same, based on square footage, or the thieving method of RUBS?
You'd have to define what you mean by "based on square footage." On the one hand, my understanding is that basing water bills on the square footage of each unit is one type of RUBS. One can see chatter like this on the net: "RUBS is a system that divides utility bills among residents of a property based on predetermined criteria. It’s a viable option when submetering is either too expensive or too cumbersome to install... RUBS calculates the utility consumption of a tenant based on occupancy and usage. Typically the property management firm works with a third-party provider like Yardi, Community Utility Billing Services, Northwestern Utility Billing Services or others to conduct research on their client’s behalf and determine a fair and legally compliant RUBS formula."

Many cities prohibit RUBS billing. Furthermore, from the net: "Some states, such as North Carolina, Mississippi and Massachusetts, generally do not permit RUBS billing."

As noted, many condo associations have units that are not individually metered. The governing documents typically dictate how the condo units' assessments are to be calculated. Often the square footage of the unit divided by the total square footage of all units determines the fraction of the condo's overall expenses that a unit must pay. These expenses typically include the overall water bill for the COA. Hence the individual units' water "billing" (as contained in the unit's assessment) for many condos is computed in direct relation to square footage). It is a form of RUBS billing (though I know you disagree). As CathyA3 pointed out, it's not economically fair. But it is what an owner agreed to when they bought a condo unit.

"Ethical" is not the descriptor I would use here. A contract (and covenants) is what it is (are what they are). No one's arm is being twisted to buy into a condo where de facto RUBS (AFAIC) billing is used for water.

I would rather not buy into a condo that does not have sub-meters, measuring cold and hot water use through a single meter on a main line for each unit.

Whatever.

AugustinD


Posts:601


06/06/2021 11:42 AM  
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/06/2021 10:40 AM
So did they install a sub-meter and then use RUBS to do the billing?
The board did not like the estimating bs (thinking, for one, this would lead to anger among owners; disputes with a manager already known to be math illiterate; and so on) and said nope to the sub-metering company proposals, pedaling their stupid software that crudely guessed at overall water usage of a unit using known hot water usage of the unit.
TomP11
(California)

Posts:25


06/06/2021 11:42 AM  
MelissaP1

I agree with what you are saying. They are not lowering our dues. It would be great because they are charging $100 per unit for water and it would be nice to cut $100 off the dues; however, this is not the case.

There is still going to be a main water meter for the community from the city. That is not changing. The owners have always been responsible for repairs even pipes outside of the unit.
AugustinD


Posts:601


06/06/2021 11:53 AM  
Posted By TomP11 on 06/05/2021 12:21 PM
They did change the CC&Rs back in 2020 and had the responsibilities changed for things such as the roof, sidings, staircase and landings, painting, basically anything that isn’t a common area like the pool and landscaping from the HOA to the homeowners.

Posted By TomP11 on 06/06/2021 11:42 AM
They are not lowering our dues. It would be great because they are charging $100 per unit for water and it would be nice to cut $100 off the dues; however, this is not the case.
To me, and as digressions go, the above is the most interesting part of the thread. This COA, via a court-ordered restatement of the Declaration requested by the COA through its Board, has transferred the maintenance responsibility of major, way expensive infrastructure to the owners. What happens to the COA reserve fund that, normally, would have been building up over the years, and then going down in some years, as the roofs and other long-lifed infrastructure need replacement?

Was the COA's reserve fund woefully underfunded? The Board had a come to jesus meeting with a Reserve Study company and its accountant and came up with the solution of transferring the maintenance responsibility to the owners? And the Board even got more than half the owners (but not the required super-majority?) to vote for amendments saying as much?

Or as has been suggested (sort of) the dues are now not going into the reserve fund but instead, are paying for the sub-metering.

I expect the dues will be going down radically at some point. God willing individual owners will do their own saving for their unit's/building's roof replacement and more.
MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:382


06/06/2021 12:18 PM  
I manage 50 properties. 36 are condos, which non are sub-metered. 13 of them base their water bill off the square footage of each unit (Kerry's is also based on square footage), while the other 23 are shared equally. 6 of the 14 single family homes are in the City of Los Angeles and are sub-metered with unit not LADWP approved, so they have to do their own billing. In those instances, someone on site reads the meters and I do the billing, currently $12.94 per 740 gallons. The other 8 are billed by their local water company.

When I owned the sub metering company, we used El Dorado Utility Billing software, which had the option for sub meter billing or RUBS. Condos have it in their CCRs how utilities are billed, (Kerry's is Exhibit C). There is no mention of RUBS, so, yes, it is legal to charge by square footage. With RUBS, it is based on factors like number of occupants and number bedroom. In a HOA, I won't know how many occupants there are. The grant deed may say john and Mary Doe, husband and wife, so I figure they have at least two. But they could have 6 kids. On a lease, you have to list the number and names of the person leasing the unit. So RUBS is popular with apartment owners
MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:382


06/06/2021 12:39 PM  
Posted By AugustinD on 06/06/2021 11:53 AM
Posted By TomP11 on 06/05/2021 12:21 PM
They did change the CC&Rs back in 2020 and had the responsibilities changed for things such as the roof, sidings, staircase and landings, painting, basically anything that isn’t a common area like the pool and landscaping from the HOA to the homeowners.

Posted By TomP11 on 06/06/2021 11:42 AM
They are not lowering our dues. It would be great because they are charging $100 per unit for water and it would be nice to cut $100 off the dues; however, this is not the case.
To me, and as digressions go, the above is the most interesting part of the thread. This COA, via a court-ordered restatement of the Declaration requested by the COA through its Board, has transferred the maintenance responsibility of major, way expensive infrastructure to the owners. What happens to the COA reserve fund that, normally, would have been building up over the years, and then going down in some years, as the roofs and other long-lifed infrastructure need replacement?

Was the COA's reserve fund woefully underfunded? The Board had a come to jesus meeting with a Reserve Study company and its accountant and came up with the solution of transferring the maintenance responsibility to the owners?

Or as has been suggested (sort of) the dues are now not going into the reserve fund but instead, are paying for the sub-metering.

I expect the dues will be going down radically at some point. God willing individual owners will do their own saving for their unit's/building's roof replacement and more.



And the Board even got more than half the owners (but not the required super-majority?) to vote for amendments saying as much? Can you point to where that was stated? Maybe we could do a survey after a few tidbits of information.

In re-stating the CCRs, the HOA is transferring responsibility for roof, sidings, staircase and landings, painting to the homeowners. Now you have been contributing to the reserves for the past 18 years and now, all of a sudden, instead of the reserves you paid into, you are now on the hook for maintenance and repairs. How many of you would approve the new, restatement, getting the shaft CCRS?
TomP11
(California)

Posts:25


06/06/2021 12:58 PM  
AugustinD,

I know back in 2013 they took out a loan to do repair to the community since the buildings were built in the 70’s apparent they did not have enough in reserves that is why they had to take out a $20 million loan. I moved there in 2019. The few meeting I have gone to before the C-word is that they were talking about the bank requiring them to increase the reserves. They ran out of money because they spent most of the money on landscaping and did not finish all the buildings. The homeowners in those buildings are mad so they have to take another loan.

They are making up take care of the outside of the buildings now because it is costing the HOA too much money now.

The landscaping thing because I am sure people are going to ask. They spend $94,000 a year on it, Granted it looks nice but that is one of the main reasons why they are making us pay for water now.
They have been trying to change the CC&Rs for years but this year they did not get the require amount of people to send in their votes. Only 60% did and since they have been doing it for years that is why they went to court. This is mu understanding but they are no longer sending meeting minutes in a timely fashion anymore. We just received the minutes from the April meetings and homeowners are no longer allowed to go to meetings since the C-word started.
MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:382


06/06/2021 1:28 PM  
Tom

From experience to amend the CCRs, you need a quorum of 76 to conduct the meeting to open ballots and a total 101 affirmative to pass. The 60% you mentioned was based on what number?

TomP11
(California)

Posts:25


06/06/2021 1:33 PM  
MaxB4,

The 60% came from the letter that was sent out to the owners when they said they were going to court to see their options because they did not have the require amount to move forward. I do not put the on the HOA because the other homeowners should have voted and that is why we are in this situation.
MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:382


06/06/2021 2:24 PM  
Posted By AugustinD on 06/06/2021 11:42 AM
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/06/2021 10:40 AM
So did they install a sub-meter and then use RUBS to do the billing?
The board did not like the estimating bs (thinking, for one, this would lead to anger among owners; disputes with a manager already known to be math illiterate; and so on) and said nope to the sub-metering company proposals, pedaling their stupid software that crudely guessed at overall water usage of a unit using known hot water usage of the unit.



The six HOA's I bill for have their sub-meters connected to the 1" main line going into the unit, which is cold water. It is located before into goes into the unit so it can meter landscape water and water inside the unit. I use a spreadsheet to calculate charges. Last month meter read 10, this month 12, usage 2. Multiple by 12.943, bill is $25.89. No service fee or convenience fee.
AugustinD


Posts:601


06/06/2021 3:13 PM  
Posted By MaxB4 on 06/06/2021 12:39 PM
Posted By AugustinD on 06/06/2021 11:53 AM
Posted By TomP11 on 06/05/2021 12:21 PM
They did change the CC&Rs back in 2020 and had the responsibilities changed for things such as the roof, sidings, staircase and landings, painting, basically anything that isn’t a common area like the pool and landscaping from the HOA to the homeowners.

Posted By TomP11 on 06/06/2021 11:42 AM
They are not lowering our dues. It would be great because they are charging $100 per unit for water and it would be nice to cut $100 off the dues; however, this is not the case.
To me, and as digressions go, the above is the most interesting part of the thread. This COA, via a court-ordered restatement of the Declaration requested by the COA through its Board, has transferred the maintenance responsibility of major, way expensive infrastructure to the owners. What happens to the COA reserve fund that, normally, would have been building up over the years, and then going down in some years, as the roofs and other long-lifed infrastructure need replacement?

Was the COA's reserve fund woefully underfunded? The Board had a come to jesus meeting with a Reserve Study company and its accountant and came up with the solution of transferring the maintenance responsibility to the owners?

Or as has been suggested (sort of) the dues are now not going into the reserve fund but instead, are paying for the sub-metering.

I expect the dues will be going down radically at some point. God willing individual owners will do their own saving for their unit's/building's roof replacement and more.



And the Board even got more than half the owners (but not the required super-majority?) to vote for amendments saying as much? Can you point to where that was stated?
Yup, I can. Will I? No. I am not in the habit of teaching basic literacy skills to someone as dishonest, as rude, as hostile as you. I wonder if you are using alcohol while posting.


In re-stating the CCRs, the HOA is transferring responsibility for roof, sidings, staircase and landings, painting to the homeowners. Now you have been contributing to the reserves for the past 18 years and now, all of a sudden, instead of the reserves you paid into, you are now on the hook for maintenance and repairs. How many of you would approve the new, restatement, getting the shaft CCRS?
My vote would depend on the extent to which the HOA is in financial ruin. California statute ties HOA/COA's hands to a large extent when it comes to loans, special assessments, and assessment increases. Seeking amendment through court approval may have been among the best solutions.
AugustinD


Posts:601


06/06/2021 3:26 PM  
Posted By TomP11 on 06/06/2021 12:58 PM
AugustinD,

I know back in 2013 they took out a loan to do repair to the community since the buildings were built in the 70’s apparent they did not have enough in reserves that is why they had to take out a $20 million loan. I moved there in 2019. The few meeting I have gone to before the C-word is that they were talking about the bank requiring them to increase the reserves. They ran out of money because they spent most of the money on landscaping and did not finish all the buildings. The homeowners in those buildings are mad so they have to take another loan.

They are making up take care of the outside of the buildings now because it is costing the HOA too much money now.

The landscaping thing because I am sure people are going to ask. They spend $94,000 a year on it, Granted it looks nice but that is one of the main reasons why they are making us pay for water now.
They have been trying to change the CC&Rs for years but this year they did not get the require amount of people to send in their votes. Only 60% did and since they have been doing it for years that is why they went to court. This is mu understanding but they are no longer sending meeting minutes in a timely fashion anymore. We just received the minutes from the April meetings and homeowners are no longer allowed to go to meetings since the C-word started.
-- Is the "C-word" the same as "court"?

-- Else I think this is quite a story. I do not envy those on the Board (unpaid volunteers) at all.

-- I will add that my town has one townhome community, with several buildings and several units to a building. There are no upper and lower level units. There are shared vertical walls. Each unit does have its own roof (or fairly clearly defined section of roof). It is not a condo subject to the state's condo act. Individual unit owners are responsible for their own roofs. It looks a wee bit shabby on the outside, but the board appears to have capable and thoughtful administrators, down-homey and good examples of what good neighbors should be, but strict when they need to be. The monthly HOA fee is a pittance and does take into account reserve funding for the bit of common area there is. I think the prices the units are selling for are fair. Some of the interiors are gorgeous, so it's not like a shanty-town or anything, nor it it headed in this direction. In other words, what your HOA has done might be for the best.
MaxB4
(Maine)

Posts:382


06/06/2021 3:46 PM  
C word would be COVID...I think most all got that!
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