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Subject: Association Rentention Pond
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Author Messages
HarryS2
(Wisconsin)

Posts:2


11/10/2021 10:47 AM  
Our association was originally going to be 4 phases. When the subdivision was drawn up there were 4 storm water retention ponds added to the development. During the development of phase 3 the original developer went bankrupt. The remaining development of phase 4 was picked up by another developer who decided he did not like our CCRs and created his own separate subdivision. So the original subdivision consisting of the first 3 phases are not responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of 4 retention ponds which were designed to include homes for all 4 phases as well as a few other common areas. Specifically one of the ponds will have more homes surrounding it from the new subdivision than are around it from the old subdivision. Do we have any recourse to get the new subdivision to pick up any of the cost for maintaining this shared pond let along the other ponds in the community since when the community was originally designed these ponds were included to account for all homes that were planned or is this new subdivision off the hook because the developer who picked up the remaining land broke off from us?

Additionally, what protection do we have regarding these homes mowing and blowing their grass clipping, leaves and rubbish over the hill at the back of their properties into the pond and adding sediment to this pond?
JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:11659


11/10/2021 11:32 AM  
Typically the responsibility for a retention pond is assigned to a specific development by the local/state controlling authority. If this is the case, developer (original or not) cannot just walk away from this responsibility.
HarryS2
(Wisconsin)

Posts:2


11/10/2021 11:57 AM  
So any suggestions on how we go about finding out what that new developer's obligations are in relation to the ponds (and common areas)? About 2 years who when the new developer decided to create their own HOA our attorney attempted to make contact with him and his representatives with no luck. We burned though a fair amount of money with the attorney costs we incurred. After close to a year of not making any progress we dropped the matter because it was costing too much in attorney fees. Now we're faced with approximately 30k in pond maintenance and some association members are asking again why the new development doesn't have some responsibility to maintain these ponds (and common areas).
SheliaH
(Indiana)

Posts:4284


11/10/2021 4:08 PM  
I know you don't want to spend a lot of money in legal fees, but it seems that may be the only way this gets resolved. John noted there may be something the city or county authority might do, so you may want to talk to them and see if they can compel the new developer to cooperate. I'm thinking the zoning department (or whoever issued the permits to build out the community in the first place) or public works department might be the place to start.
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:10584


11/10/2021 4:08 PM  
Why are you paying so much money for a lawyer in the first place? Finding out how to contact someone doesn't need a lawyer. There are 2 things assured in this world. Death and Taxes. If there is an owner, there are PUBLIC tax records. Plus a lawyer letter seems a bit aggressive. Are you also sending them just first class or do they need to sign for the letters?

The HOA would pay for the expense. It could be that they are a "sub-HOA" to the master HOA you are in. If so, then they do have an obligation to the master HOA. A HOA is ONLY funded by it's members for it's members expenses. So best to find out who is putting money in the till...

Funny my new HOA someone is already complaining about the retention pond. There is one at the front entrance and a few others scattered about not accessible yet. They were complaining because it ONLY filled up when it rained. The houses around it had to pay "extra" to be around them. Considered "Common area". They are "pretty" when full but once they drain are a mess. Had to remind them that they are "retention ponds" we will have to maintain once the builder leaves. Plus they are to ONLY fill up when it rains. So be happy paying artificially low HOA fees because they are not "cheap" to maintain later.

Former HOA President
MichaelS56
(Minnesota)

Posts:300


11/10/2021 4:33 PM  
Who required the retention ponds? Our only retention pond is owned by our city.
LoriM15
(Florida)

Posts:49


11/11/2021 2:24 AM  
In our community we have 10 lakes. We share one of the lakes with an apartment community that is not part of our HOA. So we have a “stormwater council” that includes the apartments that is responsible for the lakes. They are entitled to a seat on the board but they don’t participate. But the do pay a share of the fees. The HOA pays a larger share and the apartments pay the smaller share. HOA board members are the board members for this also. It works really well since it is run as a separate organization with separate budget. Some communities in our area have a separate Community Development District that maintains the lakes. Maybe you could form something like this

AugustinD


Posts:1905


11/11/2021 4:03 AM  
Posted By HarryS2 on 11/10/2021 11:57 AM
So any suggestions on how we go about finding out what that new developer's obligations are in relation to the ponds (and common areas)? About 2 years who when the new developer decided to create their own HOA our attorney attempted to make contact with him and his representatives with no luck. We burned though a fair amount of money with the attorney costs we incurred. After close to a year of not making any progress we dropped the matter because it was costing too much in attorney fees. Now we're faced with approximately 30k in pond maintenance and some association members are asking again why the new development doesn't have some responsibility to maintain these ponds (and common areas).
To become as educated as possible about the legalities here:

-- What do the plats say about the ponds?

-- Speak with the city land use department about who has responsibility for maintenance of the ponds.

-- Get an attorney to explain your options to you and whether the law seems mostly on your side or is unclear.

-- Regarding the grass clippings et cetera that you say the new development is blowing into the pond(s): Again get an attorney to explain your options.
JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:11659


11/11/2021 10:56 AM  
Our Declarant had to agree the HOA was responsible for the retention pond before the county would approve the plans to build our HOA. In other words, our HOA owns the retention pond. In five years we have had to rebuild the overflow towere ($4K) and replace the fountain (aeration) sprinkler ($2K).
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