Bill Davis

Following the Florida condo collapse, the universal cure seems to be to fund the reserves. Making sure there are adequate funds for the necessary repairs is a no-brainer. I had long advocated funding the reserves but have always been surprised when homeowners quickly informed me that I was wrong. Some even claimed they would prefer a special assessment to take care of any problems. That approach never appealed to me. However, it is important to hear all the concerns. 

Bill Davis joins us today. Bill, a Texas attorney and a frequent guest on On The Commons, sees the big picture and can explain what we are missing. While making sure we fund the reserves, that is only part of the solution. Please tune and take a look at the big picture. It is not always quite as simple as it sounds. Be sure to tune in.

Listen to Bill Davis

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Martha Boneta

It’s time to reflect back on the almost 22 years of On The Commons.  It is Thanksgiving night, the festivities are over with, the kitchen is clean and all is quiet, a perfect time to let my mind wander back to the over 900 shows we have done.  Yes, I say WE, because I didn’t do them on my own- I am so thankful and grateful for the over 900 guests who have joined me, told their stories, explained the laws, talked about the legislation they were proposing, the books they had written, the projects they were working on and the many other issues affecting the place we call home.  Some of their stories have made us extremely angry, others have left us wondering if we heard correctly, some have made us cry and others made us laugh, we have cheered and rejoiced when the homeowner won and we always wished them our very best.  But this show will leave you with so much hope.  You will be energized, excited and anxious to get started. I know   that’s how I felt.

Martha Boneta joins us On The Commons.  Martha owns a small family farm in Northern Virginia.  It has always been her dream to grow food and feed others.  But when she finally got her farm, her dream came with some really nasty surprises.  Not one to roll over and let the bad guys get the best of her, Martha stood her ground and fought back to protect her farm and her rights.  Now she is working on setting up a national grassroots network and invites everyone to join the fight for freedom.  And at the heart of freedom is property rights.  How can freedom exist without the right to own property, whether it is a farm, a mansion or a small condo?  As Martha said, “Now, more than ever, across our nation we need to rise up and answer the call to defend the American Dream.”  You will be excited at her ideas and will agree with much of what she has to say.  You can reach her via her website or by phone, 571-839-1143.  Stay tuned for the official launch of this grassroots movement, scheduled for sometime in January. And when it launches, Martha will be back with details – she promised.  

And this Thanksgiving I am thankful for all of you, all the people who will fight back for justice and freedom and I am really proud to call Martha a friend.  Now you have to tune in, don’t you?

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Julio Robaina

Julio Robaina

Ever since the Surfside condo collapsed in Florida there has been much speculation as to what caused it and what needs to be done to prevent this from happening again.  And predictably, the homeowners themselves were blamed for it.  I have been involved with the policies and politics of HOAs and condos for well over 20 years, but this has always baffled me.  Condos in particular have been sold as “care free living” so why blame the owners who were sold on the idea they didn’t have to do anything?  And they are negligent for not having filled in cracks.  What’s the rationale behind it or were they first in line without a lobby behind them to deflect the accusatory finger pointing at them?  None of the reasons given for the tragedy made any sense to me at all.  I thought we at least needed to know what caused the collapse before we could come up with a way to prevent it from happening again.  Blaming the homeowners because they were not keen on funding repairs on something they no longer owned made no sense to me.  As far as I am concerned it was just more evidence that the HOA and Condo concepts are flawed.  That is a discussion for another time but one we definitely need to have. 

In my experience we never had a vote as to whether we would fund the reserves.  Silly me, I thought all HOAs and condos had to fund the reserves. Apparently that is not the case.  Whoever dreamed this concept up should have ensured that the funds needed to maintain this terrific experiment were always available. 
Julio Robaina joins me On The Commons.  Julio is a former Florida legislator who promised he would always work for the HOA and condo homeowners and he has kept his promise. Even though he is not currently a legislator he is very much involved with drafting legislation to protect the owners from another similar disaster.  I am really excited and impressed with some of the legislation he talked about. Finally some sensible ideas.  I would love to tell you about them but I suggest you tune in and hear Julio explain them.   

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