What Kind of Rule Followers Are We Going to Be?

I just got done watching the finale of the Amazing Race. It took place in Philadelphia, so a lot of American history was on display. One of the tasks was to repeat a part of the Declaration of Independence. It goes like this:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

So when turnover comes in 2025, I’d like to see a new HOA management company take over the responsibilities of running our communities. Plus, us homeowners are now going to be in the majority on all the HOA Boards, so that means we’ll be pretty much running the show. I say pretty much because I don’t know exactly how powerful we will be. For example, can we say no to construction traffic on Hampton Blvd and East Hampton Circle? The newly expanded home site area is probably going to take another 20 years to build out giving the state of today’s housing market. I personally don’t like the idea of those roads being unfinished for all that time.

And what about rules violations? Our Facebook community groups have a lot of posts complaining about how the HOA management team runs things. It seems like a lot of people think some of the rules and resultant violations are frivolous. I kind of like living in an HOA because that gives us a certain level of expectations on how the community looks and operates. Can you imagine a next door neighbor decorating their front yard with old tires as planters, or better yet an old Volkswagen or refrigerator, or old appliances rusting in the backyard? Cars, boats and campers parked on the grass, etc, etc. So rules are good and I’m kind of a rule follower as are the vast majority of people living in this community.

I think our biggest problem is the uneven enforcement of the rules. For example, lately we’re only suppose to be watering once a week on the weekends with Wednesday available for contractors or homeowners to fix their watering system. However, it seems like lots of people water whenever they want to. Lots of watering systems spout water like its Caesar Palace in Vegas. Streams of water run down the street into the storm sewers. Why this problem isn’t addressed by the HOA is beyond me. If your garbage cans are out to early or too late, they’re all over it.

I walk around the neighborhood multiple times a day. If a car is blocking the sidewalk, I walk around it. No problem, I’m not complaining, I don’t care. I have no problem getting around the car. However, if I was on crutches or in a wheelchair, that would be a different story. Plus, kids ride their bikes on the sidewalk and have to go out in the street to get around the cars, so there is some danger involved. So what do we do? And why is parking your car on the street after 10pm a problem? There’s way less traffic. Cars and emergency vehicles have steering wheels and headlights, so they should be able to maneuver around them with no problem. But the solution is to tow them away!

So what am I saying? I’m saying when it comes to our turn to run the show it would be nice if we were all on the same page. Maybe even if we could get a community wide consensus on these types of issues, we can make changes to the rules now instead of later. That’s why I created a forum on my website. I know we can talk on Facebook, but not everyone sees the posts, the posts disappear or are hard to find.

Check out the Hampton Lakes Forum by clicking here and please sign up to be a user by sending me a Contact Us form and lets talk about these issues and turnover in general before the eleventh hour is upon us! And tell your neighbors. Get the word out.

Thank you!

3 thoughts on “What Kind of Rule Followers Are We Going to Be?

  1. We will obviously need to hire a third party professional entity to manage the HOA with a resident advisory board. The mgmt co will need to handle the day-to-day stuff, collections, violations, etc. We will need lawyers, accountants, bookkeepers, etc. It’s not going to be a walk in the park. And who is going to negotiate the final details with the developer, etc? Many many questions and concerns. We should at least consult with another respectable community that has done this already. I can’t see this being dumped in our lap. We’re a bunch of amateurs when it comes to HOA management. There has to be professional advisory involved.

    While it is early for this, at some point a transition team needs to be established to start identifying and working through all the details of the turn-over. I’d be happy to be a part of that – I think 🙂

    Additionally, a line item budget would also help us see who are all the vendors, maintenance co’s, etc.

    And what about the amenity center? I’ve heard we need to buy it? Are we talking some sort of outrageous special assessment to do this? Can the amenity center instead be rented from the developer, could be an option.

    All I can say at this point is etc, etc, etc. It won’t be a walk in the park and I think, at a minimum, we all want to stop our neighbors from doing stupid things. It can’t be a free for all! We should all be concerned and somewhat worried on what’s to come.

    1. Hi Patrick,
      Thanks for the feedback. The day to day nitty gritty operations of the HOA will be done by the HOA Management company. And I would like a different one instead of the one we have now. They will take care of accounting, lawyers (if and when needed) and complying with state and federal regulations. The HOA Board will have a majority of homeowners on it and will direct the HOA management company as to what direction we want our community to go in. You’re right about turnover. That is going to be a complicated mess. All we can hope for is that the developer people be honest and above board and cooperative. The sooner we get started talking about it the better off we all will be. That’s why I started this forum.

  2. Hopefully others start to reply and comment on their own.

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