It is so easy to look around us with great sadness and wonder what happened to our traditional values? Where did our rights go? How come even our homes and communities have become unpleasant, scary and alien places? Places we are afraid to go to? Weren’t they once our safe havens where we had the final word? Why can we no longer choose the plants we have in our yards? The drapes we have in our windows? The outdoor play areas we want for our children? What happened? Shouldn’t someone be doing something to take us back to the way things used to be?
Mahatma Gandhi is quoted as saying, “You must be the change you wish to see in the world”.
Jeff Dove joins us On The Commons. Jeff’s mother taught him that “When you don’t like the way something is going, you should get off the sidelines and do something about it”. Wise words from wise people. Jeff took his mother’s words to heart, in fact her words have guided him throughout his life and he is now ready to take the next big step in doing something about it. Jeff threw his hat in the ring and is running for Congress. When he wins he will be MY congressman and I can’t wait for that to happen. Tune in and join us as I get to know Jeff, his values and his beliefs. We talk about the issues facing us all and we talk about our homes and our rights. We also talk about “change”, change for the better and how we can get there. Isn’t it time to have someone in office who will listen to his constituents and find out what they want? Let’s all get off the sidelines and be the change we want to see in our world. There is a better world out there waiting for us and our children. All we have to do is get there.
Because of the sheer number of homeowners who reach out to me, desperate, scared and alone, I think it is appropriate to re-broadcast this show.
If I could draw I think I would write the HOA book as a series of cartoons because that’s how my mind tends to work. Many of those cartoons would be funny, others not so funny. But over the years never has there been a sumo wrestler in any of my imagined doodles or cartoons – until this interview. That’s when I started putting sumo wrestlers in the picture . But a gratuitous, enormous hulking, naked man in what appears to be a diaper, in the middle of a manicured, sterile, characterless, controlled residential association wasn’t quite connecting. So, I decided to read up on sumo wrestling and sumo wrestlers. And all of a sudden it was a perfect fit, diaper and all. I discovered, among other things, that although some of these massive men appear to be invincible, they have been toppled by smaller opponents. A sumo historian is quoted as saying he believes the circular ring was chosen to assist smaller fighters to slip away and that the sumo rules tends to root for the underdog.
If you find yourselves in the bullseye of an HOA battle, facing what may seem like a sumo wrestler, grin at the diaper and know that you can win.
Dr. Wes Rocki, MD, PhD joins us On The Commons. Retired from practicing conventional medicine, Wes now focusses on alternative medicine, including techniques on self help and self healing. He explains how we can empower ourselves to better handle any conflict. We talk about how we can step away, mentally and emotionally to get a better grasp of the situation. Wes gives us a lot of really good advice on how to not only survive being at the center of an HOA storm but how to survive emotionally, reframe the conflict, empower ourselves and win against that massive sumo wrestler in the ring with us. So many light bulbs went off during the course of this interview. Listen and be empowered. Well worth a second listen.
I learn something new- and very disturbing- about HOAs seemingly every day. Homeowner advocates and activists, with very good reason, have been calling our homes the ATMs for the HOA industry. Our homes are used as collateral for so many things other than our homes themselves. When things get complicated it is even harder to untangle the threads to understand just what is going on and where our money is going.
John Sellers joins us On The Commons. John is a former banker with a vast and broad knowledge and understanding of how finance works. As an Arizona homeowner in multiple HOAs and one of the many homeowners who has done the two step with his HOA in the Arizona court system, he is now also an expert on HOAs and the laws governing them – or not. John explains “pooling” and how that works in the insurance industry when it comes to insuring HOAs. If you think it is like a normal insurance policy you might buy, think again. This is just one more leaky hole in the HOA scheme that leaves us vulnerable and puts our homes at risk.
There is a rumor out there that buying a condo or a home in an HOA not only protects but also enhances property values. I still haven’t figured just out how that supposedly works. But proponents of the regime insist it is so. For the sake of argument I’ll leave that alone for the time being. But how on earth do they explain the fact that homeowners are responsible for the actions or inactions of the people either elected or hired and paid good money to “protect and enhance” your property?
Jan Bergemann joins us On The Commons. Jan is a long time advocate and legislative activist for protecting the rights of home and condo owners in Florida. Jan is the founder and President of the Florida based Cyber Citizens for Justice . He keeps a close watch on all the news related to housing, rentals, litigation involving homeowners and pending legislation that would affect the owners. Many, if not all, of the stories end up on his web site. One recent story involves a $7.5 Million award to a condo owner who seriously hurt himself when he fell into a hot tub that had been partially emptied, ill lit and left unprotected while the necessary repairs were being done. We talk about the case and wonder just how much it will cost the owners in the condominium to cover any shortfall in the event that the insurance isn’t adequate to cover the entire $7.5 Million? How does the assertion that a condo protects and enhances property values work in a situation like this?