Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Green Acres

If anyone follows me on Facebook, you will have seen that my status update yesterday read, "I just took a giant mental laxative and jeezum do I feel good!"

Let's discuss this while I have a couple large cups of coffee, shall we? 

Because, I have been ready to discuss this for over a year.  Even to the point of writing a badly spelled post full of not so subtle references to a scourge in my life.

I was nominated and took the job as a board member in my HOA in  September of 2008. No vote necessary.  No one else wanted to take the job and no one else opposed my "I guess I will." agreement to my nomination. I figured it was my turn when someone put me up as a suggestion.  Yesterday I resigned.  Two months short of election time.  I just can't do it anymore.

It's been possibly the worst non-paid, thankless, bowl of pure unadulterated bullshit I've ever experienced.  Period.

There are plenty of folk out there in Internets-Land who believe that HOAs are a slimy PVC sided mold on the planet.  For some associations I agree.  Lord knows I did enough research on how to run an HOA simply to cover my own ass and I came upon some real doozies.  Our rules were pretty simple.  We didn't measure the length of grass or hue check the color of the perennials or limit cooking of anything garlicky.  We didn't fund projects to give pets places to poop or back any local basket-weaving teams or demand only libertarian political signage.

Nevada, in the wisdom of the boom, built whole new cities of deed restricted real estate in a whole variety of HOAs, very little of which required much funding at the time.  Put a few rules on paper to get around local laws and get those overpriced cracker boxes sold!  That's why the real estate collapse is such a hoot here.

So a few state laws were voted into place.  State laws that trump local and association laws.  By a few I mean from around 20 pages of state HOA law to 60 and the introduction of an ombudsman's office to handle all the fallout.  One of those laws increased dues or assessments for most every member of a unfunded or underfunded Nevada HOA.

Since I agreed with my signature on a piece of paper to uphold NV state HOA law, to enforce the CCRs whether I like them or not, and had to raise dues and tell people to stop parking like idiots whether they were the most sparkling unicorn and heart neighbors or not, it all went downhill from there. 

We had to employ an expert to explain the dues increase to folks.  The ones that needed the most explaining to either didn't show or plugged their ears with their fingers.

Oh the tattling and the tantrums!  If I went to a university and applied for a degree based on real world experiences, I could get a young child education BA for sure!  Everyone hold onto their loops one the rope while we cross the street...get your finger out of your nose.

They think I did this for the power.

Blink.

Yes, because telling you to mow down your four foot tall garden of sticker weeds fills me with lightning bolts.  Arranging the repair of broken siding, leaking roofs and drooping fences gives me a Hilary Clinton complex.  Developing 100s of hours of under-structure to be in compliance with new HOA law gave me elephantitis of the balls.  Having the ear plugging neighbors watch your comings and goings intently gives me a great big head.

Just getting across the idea that they agreed to the rules and regs, and the consequences, when they signed their mortgage papers was an effort in swimming in warm salt water taffy.  The peppermint kind no one likes to eat.  I understood what I moved into when I bought this house...why did all this useful information bypass you?

It got so anytime I had to perform any of my HOA work, which was often and required by law, I was on the verge of an anxiety attack.  There were times I barely held it together.  Other times I just cried.  It's affected my family and my marriage.

All glory to Ex-Lax, I'm done.

I'm free.

Next up, try to sell the house.  I get new carpet next week!

1 comment:

  1. Haha, I can sympathize with you there. I used to be on the council when we lived in a strata over a decade ago. The monthly membership meetings were all ranting stooge-fests at best.

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