Let’s do the blog a little differently this week. Before reading on, click here and watch this report and then come back: http://www.clickorlando.com/news/kissimmee-hoa-walks-off-with-residents-trash-bins/-/1637132/21985458/-/66by62z/-/index.html
Now that you watched the news report, I would love to get your thoughts. Here’s mine. These garbage cans were stolen from people’s property. Period. The association keeps justifying this bizarre move by stating that everyone had advanced notice that their garbage cans were going to be removed from the property. So what? There’s still not a provision in the governing documents that allowed this association to send its landscapers on to the owner’s property and take what isn’t theirs. One neighbor said it best when questioning whether this H.O.A. would now take bicycles left out on the lawn.
As you know, Jan and I will be advocating this upcoming legislative session for the Department of Business and Professional Regulation to start overseeing homeowner associations just like they are already doing for condominium associations. This case demonstrates a perfect example of why this is necessary. This particular Board is still arrogant enough to warn people that it’s going to keep happening to them. They are not going to stop. The owner’s property is going to repeatedly get removed from their own homes. Now, if this were happening in a condominium, any owner would immediately have the ability to file a complaint with the D.B.P.R., an investigator would be assigned and a letter would go out to the Board advising them to cut the nonsense or face fines and penalties in the future. Because this is an unregulated homeowner’s association however, these homeowners have nobody to complain to and must take legal measures to stop the association’s abuse.
You wonder why I pushed so hard for certification and educational courses for H.O.A. directors this past legislative session? Look no further than this case as a perfect example of why I thought it was necessary. Although, it would not surprise me one bit if this particular Board signed or will sign the self serving all knowing affidavit that says they read their governing documents, instead of spending a few hours at an educational seminar. After all, they don’t have the time for a class. They’re too busy walking the streets looking to take their neighbor’s garbage cans.