Millions of Americans live in neighborhoods or other locations where they must be a member of a homeowner’s association – and pay dues to belong to the HOA. Florida is not immune to the presence of these organizations and, for the most part, many people are willing to pay their dues in order to provide for the maintenance of common areas, landscaping throughout the neighborhood and even community-use pools. However, it is not uncommon for homeowners to, at times, be at odds with the rules and regulations established by an HOA. When a dispute with an HOA occurs, real estate litigation may be necessary, even if it is a last-ditch option.
But, how would a dispute develop? And how would it get to the point where it cannot be resolved out-of-court and litigation is necessary? Well, there really is one simple way: you want to do something on your property or to your home that the HOA will not allow.
For example, many Florida residents want to put a shed on their property, usually in their backyard, to store all of their tools that they use for yardwork. Some HOAs allow this, others do not. If you put up the shed without knowing your HOA regulations, you may get a strongly-worded letter instructing you to remove it or go through a process of seeking permission for the placement of the shed.
But that is just one example. HOAs oftentimes regulate everything from the allowable color of paint on the exterior of your home to the permissibility of pets living in the area. If negotiations fail, real estate litigation may become a necessary option to consider.