AZHOC - Arizona Homeowners Coalition
Voice for homeowner rights and justice.

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Is This a Right or a Preference?

I currently live in a neighborhood that is hopefully up and coming but my main HOA is not. The HOA, AAM, has been neglecting to maintain the common areas like green areas, bushes, and trees for months now. At one point they even started removing the grass in areas and replacing them with rocks against the Homeowners wishes. when confronted, the HOA manager stated that he had no knowledge of this and insisted the gardeners were doing it on their own.
Next, the concern about random outsiders coming and dropping off their trash in our area has been increasing. With the hundreds of dollars, each homeowner pays per month, we were in shock to see all the company did was place a hand-written sign that said: “eyes are watching”.
Lastly, there is a truck-sized hole in a fence in one of our areas that have yet to be fixed. This fence borders a park that has a high rate of crime and drug activity, which poses a serious safety concern.
Many residents are getting fed up with the HOA companies inability to act on real issues with our community. They can’t seem to be bothered with their responsibilities but will happily tow resident cars from parking spots in the middle of the night. Do we as Homeowners have any sort of right against their inactions or are we left with living somewhere else based on preference?

1 Response

  1. Dennis Legere

    Nicholas;

    Let’s start with clarifying some of the points in your question. First of all the management company is not the HOA, the only organization that represents the HOA is the board of directors. The management company works for the board alone and has no duty to the homeowners in the community. The same way that you are bound to comply with the CC&R’s and rules for the association the board is equally bound to maintain and manage the community common property. Their failure to do so could be construed as a breech of contract between the association and the owners. It sounds to me like your board is absent in all this and have abdicated their responsibilities to the management company. You have every right to complain to the board about the incompetency of their management company and demand that they do something to correct the situation. If the management company does not respond to the boards direction they should be fired plain and simple. If the board fails to live up to their responsibility to ensure the adequate maintenance of the common area and the protections of all residents then they should be removed.

    Each individual board member risk personal liability for their failure to act to address these issue based on the breach of duty. The normal indemnification from liability for the board members does not extend to breach of duty issue.

    As homeowners you have two choices create a petition to remove the board and elect a new board that will take their responsibilities seriously or to file suit against the board in court on their failure to satisfy their duties to the association and its members.

    Relative to the management companies excuse that the landscapers were doing these action on their own was an absolutely ridiculous response. As the community managers they probably hired the landscapers for the community and they can fire them, or at the very least have the board fire them. Landscape companies are a dime a dozen and I’m sure there are some very good companies out their that would love to have your communities contract.

    The hole in the wall is the most serious issue. There is a significant appellate court decision in Arizona, Martinez v. Woodmar IV Condominiums where the association was held responsible for their failure to protect their residents and quest form foreseeable risk. That case involved a guest in the community that was shot by gang members in the area when the association failed to maintain street lights and the community gates.

    Dennis

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