Category Archives: CAI

Deborah Goonan

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With all the bad press HOAs have been enjoying lately, it must be time for yet another industry sponsored survey, proving once again that ALL the fraud, abuses, and just plain stupidity we keep hearing about are nothing more than “isolated incidents”, simply anecdotal and really mean nothing.  You see,  “the survey says;  homeowners are overwhelmingly satisfied with their HOAs”.  Funny how the survey says the same thing time and again and yet the stories and the need for more and more enabling legislation to fix the problems continue to grow.  Something smells a little fishy here.

Deborah Goonan joins us On The Commons.  Deborah is a prolific blogger, commentator on many online venues  including social media.  She is a researcher who manages to pack a great deal in her day.  Unlike many advocates who, once they escape the horror of their residential associations simply disappear,  Deborah stuck with it to understand the issues and the problems.  Her blog is called Independent American Communities . You will find a lot of these ” isolated incidents” discussed there.  We talk to Deborah about the surveys conducted by CAI and get a wider understanding of surveys in general.  Assuming the data is accurate, we also talk about the stats that are completely ignored by the surveys and what that really means.  Sometimes there is a lot more information in what is not said than in what is actually disclosed.  

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Linc Cummings

This interview was recorded and broadcast earlier.

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Byron Hanke is largely credited with being the grandfather of what we often refer to as “homeowner associations”.  But this concept of homeownership includes condominiums, co-ooperatives as well as fee simple single family homes.  As I started looking at the bigger picture of HOAs, I wondered about the origins of the concept.  I called Byron Hanke several times and talked to him on the phone.  He never agreed to be interviewed but was generous with his time when it came to talking one on one.  In October of 1999 I got a call from Lincoln Cummins, one of the three founders of CAI and its second President, inviting me to a summit to be held at at Anne and Byron’s house in a place called “Scientists Cliffs” in Maryland.  Scientists Cliffs served as a model for HOAs.

Lincoln Cummings joins us On The Commons this week.  Linc has been involved from the very beginning so has a unique perspective.  He takes us on a trip down memory lane to the very early days of association housing,  introduces us to the people involved and talks a little about the thoughts and plans they had.  We’ll find out whether or not their ideas materialized as imagined or whether some things went astray.  We’ll also ask Linc, hindsight being 20/20, if he could go back to the very beginning, would he do anything differently. . . .

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Linc Cummings

Linc

Byron Hanke is largely credited with being the grandfather of what we often refer to as “homeowner associations”.  But this concept of homeownership includes condominiums, co-ooperatives as well as fee simple single family homes.  As I started looking at the bigger picture of HOAs, I wondered about the origins of the concept.  I called Byron Hanke several times and talked to him on the phone.  He never agreed to be interviewed but was generous with his time when it came to talking one on one.  In October of 1999 I got a call from Lincoln Cummins, one of the three founders of CAI and its second President, inviting me to a summit to be held at at Anne and Byron’s house in a place called “Scientists Cliffs” in Maryland.  Scientists Cliffs served as a model for HOAs.

Lincoln Cummings joins us On The Commons this week.  Linc has been involved from the very beginning so has a unique perspective.  He takes us on a trip down memory lane to the very early days of association housing,  introduces us to the people involved and talks a little about the thoughts and plans they had.  We’ll find out whether or not their ideas materialized as imagined or whether some things went astray.  We’ll also ask Linc, hindsight being 20/20, if he could go back to the very beginning, would he do anything differently.

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Frank Short

There are several reasons to thank the Virginia Legislature this year, not the least of which is to have all the new bills in for us to talk about on our annual St. Patrick’s Day show. ˇSome years the news is pretty grim for homeowners because the special interests have managed to convince our esteemed law makers to further empower HOAs. ˇThis year, however, things were a little different and our legislators actually had the best interest of their constituents in mind. ˇ

Frank Shortˇjoins usˇOn The Commons. ˇFrank is an attorney and a friend and our resident St Patrick’s Day leprechaun and takes us through all the new bills and laws that affect the Virginia Property Owners Association Act (POAA) and the Condo Act. ˇHe explains the new laws, tells us whether they passed or failed and how they would affect us. ˇThis year we talk about 6 bills, some passed and others were tabled. ˇShould the ones that were passed over this year be reintroduced next year? ˇHow would they protect the homeowners’ rights and their property? ˇCould some of the bills be used as a model for other states? ˇTune in, you won’t want to miss this one.

With special thanks to Senator Chap Peterson for sponsoring a bill titled “The Homeowners Bill of Rights”. ˇThanks also to Senator Dave Marsden, Delegates Chris Peace, Brenda Pogge and Tom Rust forˇsponsoring homeowner friendly bills this year. We appreciate your efforts on our behalf.

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Harry Flagle

A house is just a house, four walls and a door to keep the outside out and the inside in.  It is simply a place where people live.  A home, on the other hand,  is a place where our affections are centered, where, to use an old cliché, the heart is.  Sadly, we have gone from acquiring a house and making it our home to living in what is now known as a “unit”.  The Dictionary defines a unit as “one of many”.  There is nothing special about a “unit”.  Nothing unique, nothing to distinguish it from all the others.

Notwithstanding the outer changes of our dwelling units, we still need to have a nesting place, a place all our own, a place that reflects who we are, a place that is safe and a place where we escape the outside world, even if just for a short while.  In the homeowner association world that is taking over residential America, the concept of a home is rapidly becoming a thing of the past.  We now live in corporations where every aspect of daily life is kontrolled, where threats and sanctions are the norm and where fear seems to rule the day.  
 
Joining us On The Commons this week is Harry Flagle.   Harry is a multi talented gent with a heart as big as they come.  A composer and song writer, Harry wrote the lyrics and the music to our theme song, “One Way Ticket to Hell” and donated the song to the homeowners striving to maintain some semblance of sanity in their neighborhoods.  He owns several patents and is an Emmy Award winner for some of his contributions to the film industry. We’ll ask Harry why he wrote One Way Ticket to Hell and what the reaction to the song has been and then we’ll join Harry on a delightful stroll down memory lane to a time when life was simpler and the unimaginable was possible.  

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