Discolor Online

Weblog of the sweetest person you never want to piss off.


HOA Mess

Over the weekend Chris talked to someone who was coming door to door in the neighborhood to talk to homeowners about the state of the HOA. Now that all the homes in the three phases of the development are sold, the Seattle Housing Authority (which has controlled the HOA board to this point) will be turning over control of the association to homeowners.

Currently there is a budget deficit of over $70,000 for operating expenses (keeping community green space maintained and so on would be included in this, but I haven't seen an itemized detail). This means that they're looking at a special assessment of $190 for every home in the community.

There's also a deficit in the Reserve Fund Account to the tune of $56,000. The people who own townhouses are looking at having to pay $350 each to make up for that. As a detached home owner, I only have to pay $11 but that's because I have to pay for my own roof, fence, porch and whatnot out of my own pocket, no shared expenses. The people with townhomes or duplexes are getting particularly screwed on this as there's supposed to be money to fix their roofs and fences, but there isn't.

There is also a faulty water billing issue that the HOA was supposed to be dealing with. This year's homeowner water bills were based on "estimated usage" and left some people owing between $500 and $1000 and others getting refunds. This was an issue at last year's meetings and clearly hasn't been properly addressed.

The SHA is proposing to make a contribution toward the operating deficit but only if the homeowners pay the water bills and cover the $56,000 reserve deficit. The wealthier homeowners are pissed and have hired a lawyer to formulate a response.

There's a meeting on Dec 20th and I'm going to attend, just to get up to speed. I had been blissfully ignoring the HOA since they weren't hassling me, but it's clear that my concerns of last year were justified and have only gotten worse.


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