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Can I Opt Out of my HOA?

Discussion in 'Homeowners Associations & Boards' started by bhill1934, Feb 8, 2019.

  1. bhill1934

    bhill1934 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Jurisdiction:
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    I am really upset with the HOA board of the development I live in (located in Bexar County). I don't agree with some of the variances they've granted regarding property improvements and feel like my expectations haven't been met. Can I legally opt out of the HOA? Can I write them a letter stating that I am opting out of the HOA and refuse to pay the HOA dues?
     
  2. Tax Counsel

    Tax Counsel Well-Known Member

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    That depends on the covenants that you agreed to when you bought the home. But I can tell you this: I have never seen a HOA that allowed homeowners to get out simply by opting out. If they allowed that the HOA would quickly fall apart. Typically if you don't like how the HOA is run you either elect new board members that will run it like you want or you sell and move to a home outside that HOA.
     
    Michael Wechsler likes this.
  3. bhill1934

    bhill1934 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    The covenants say nothing about allowing me to opt out. I was just wondering if there is some kind of specific Texas HOA law that would allow me to do that. I've looked at the Texas statutes but haven't been able to find anything. That's why I decided to ask my question here.
     
  4. zddoodah

    zddoodah Well-Known Member

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    Pretty much all of the purposes behind creating an HOA would be defeated by allowing folks simply to "opt out." When you buy a home subject to an HOA, you accept the risk that the rules will be changed in ways that you don't like and that rules will be strictly enforced or laxly enforced or arbitrarily enforced, and your only recourse is to vote in board members you like or move.
     
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  5. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    I've never owned a property RULED by Nazis or Commies masquerading as an HOA Board.

    That said, the best thing you can do if you now discover what I already knew (tyrants can make your life miserable), is sell the property and buy a home where you rule supreme.

    Living under an HOA regime is the same thing renters say they dislike about a tyrannical landlord.
     
  6. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    That's because the only way you opt out of an HOA is you sell your property and buy a property that's not in an HOA.

    Otherwise, as noted, you get active with board meetings, get the undesirables voted out and like minded folks voted in.

    The other alternative is you hire a lawyer and file a lawsuit against the HOA for whatever it is you think the HOA has done wrong. Good luck with that.

    BTW, the only things that you get for not paying your fees, is fined and foreclosed.
     
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  7. Michael Wechsler

    Michael Wechsler Administrator Staff Member

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    How do the other members feel about what has happened? Do the bylaws speak to such an issue should most members find the result unsatisfactory?
     
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  8. bhill1934

    bhill1934 Law Topic Starter New Member

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    No one else seems to be bothered by most of the issues I'm concerned about. For the most part people in here seem to be ok with letting the developer HOA operate as it wants to. I don't agree. I notified them via an email that I am not a member of their membership and to stop contacting me. I'm not going to pay my HOA dues either. I don't agree with what is going on and my expectations are not being met in regards to building standards and variances.

    I just wanted to know if there was any legal way I can opt out. There is nothing in our CC&Rs that allow me or anyone else to do that but I thought in Texas especially there might be some loophole that would allow it.
     
  9. mightymoose

    mightymoose Moderator

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    There may not be a specified way to opt out, but is there a specified consequence for failure to pay dues? You might be setting yourself up for an expensive lesson about HOA's.
    You might try to speak with others, attend meetings, and so all you can to convince others to share your position. Most people tend to sit on their hands until someone motivates them to take action. Maybe they just need to hear from you and need some leadership. Perhaps you can get them to elect you to the HOA?
     
  10. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    What some lawyers have to say about HOAs:

    How to Remove a Lot From a Home Owners Association

    Beware of Homeowner's Associations (HOA's) | Paul L. Urich, P.A. | Orlando






    The only way out of any HOA is to post a sign in your front yard with the words "for sale" in large letters.

    You then wait for another sucker to make you an offer for your property.

    You sell the property to them as fast as you can close escrow.

    Your ship came in, mate, and you can happily move out after unloading the HOA trap.

    Other than that, you bought into the HOA when you bought property with a restricted deed, and you cannot change that.

    The portions of the rules you quote allow the declarant (ie, the original owner/developer of the lots) to remove some lots from HOA control for a couple years, with certain restrictions. that's it.

    There is nothing you can do except try to sell your home to free you of the HOA's grasp.
     
  11. hrforme

    hrforme Active Member

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    Failure to pay dues will lead to a lien on your property . If there is a mortgage, your mortgage company might pay the lien and then charge you back for it depending on your mortgage paperwork. But you are going to have to declare the lien if you ever try to sell the house and it is unpaid.

    If you are so against what they are doing and how, then either move like armyjudge stated OR honestly, run for a position on the board. Put in the hours of volunteering it will take to help make the changes you want to see. But realize that you are fighting a mighty uphill battle if " No one else seems to be bothered by most of the issues I'm concerned about."
     
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