Homeownership was once described as the “American Dream” but over the years that dream has become a nightmare. Not too long ago, the headline grabbing horror stories reported the outlandish behavior and abuses of overbearing boards and managers who apparently believed their mission on earth was to harass elderly veterans for having the temerity to fly a flag on private property, to go after handicapped people for needing a service animal and children for wanting to have the toys all children have, or should have, when they are growing up. And what about all those promises made by all and sundry about HOAs protecting the values of the “American Dream”?
Could things really get worse?
Jan Bergemann joins us On The Commons this week. Jan is the tireless and prolific president of the Florida based Cyber Citizens for Justice. Little happens in Florida that Jan doesn’t know about. We talk about what happens when a poorly constructed condominium project faces millions of dollars in repair costs. Suing the developer for shoddy workmanship may not be the answer, especially when the developer is a Limited Liability Corporation. The owners, mostly retirees who paid top dollar for their units now find themselves facing tens of thousands of dollars in special assessments while watching the values of their “dream” home plummet. Shoddy construction and the total lack of government oversight are not the only threat to “home sweet home”. Another major issue many condo owners face is “termination”, also known as the eminent domain bill in Florida. This is a law that allows a majority of the owners to strip an owner of his or her home regardless of whether the owner is paid up or not. Tune in and find out how many different ways you and your bank account are being used, abused and bled dry. And next time someone tries to convince you that HOAs protect property values, don’t believe a word of it.