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Home Owner Association Question
Old 05-24-2011, 06:15 AM   #1
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Home Owner Association Question

I bought a home in a new subdivision about five years ago and was told at that time after the lots were built out the developer would turnover the sub division to a HOA. The subdivision is just about built out and there is talk of a HOA becoming a reality. There are a number of problems with drainage, roads, signage, and maintenance of common areas and such that a number of home owners believe the developer will try to get out of addressing. A number of us are having a meeting this evening to discuss issues and come up with some kind of strategy. My question is, do the home owners have to take possession of a HOA (I live in Georgia) and if not what alternatives would there be, for example would the county or city have to take responsibility for HOA type issues.

Appreciate and all responses, as most of us a clueless as to what options may be available, needless to say we do not trust the developer.

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Old 05-24-2011, 06:24 AM   #2
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HOA's vary greatly by state. What did your contract say about HOA when you bought the home? You might want to contact the county in which you are located, they often have a good handle on these. Look for an environmental services or building department within the county.

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Old 05-24-2011, 06:28 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by frayne View Post
I bought a home in a new subdivision about five years ago and was told at that time after the lots were built out the developer would turnover the sub division to a HOA.
One of the brazillion documents you signed at closing was something probably called "Declaration of Covenants, Conditions, Easements and Restrictions for XXXX Subdivision" - or something to that effect. That document should tell you at what point the developer is allowed to turn over the HOA responsibilities to property owners.

Not sure what your legal options might be. Good luck in holding the developer's feet to the fire to get your issues resolved.
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Old 05-24-2011, 07:30 AM   #4
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My guess is that an HOA already exists but that the developer holds all or a majority of seats on the HOA's board of directors. Are you currently paying any dues? There is a web site that I frequent where you can get good state specific information:

HOA Homeowners Association Discussions

Go to the "HOA Discussions" section (you have to register for free) and post your questions. Lots of knowledgeable people there.
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Old 05-24-2011, 07:53 AM   #5
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This is a link to the Georgia Law regarding HOA. First thing to do is to read it.
Second, when you bought your house, if it was in an area subject to a HOA, you should have received a copy of the Declarations attached to your copy of the Title Insurance/Search. It would have been provided at closing. You need to read this.
Third, most HOA/Declarations provide that when the build out reaches the point where some majority % of the lots are sold, that the board of the assn. reverts to control of the homeowners. There should have been director elections and some homeowners should already be on the board.

Most of these developments have some sort set of agreements with the local building regulator about issues such as drainage, amenities, etc. which were conditions placed on the developer in order to get the master permit. This should be on file with the county. If the developer is not living up to the agreement, the local building officials should be contacted.

All this together should help your group of owners understand the situation and whether they will need to seek legal advice about resolving their problems.
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