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Ray
Ray, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 36967
Experience:  Texas Attorney for 30 years dealing in real estate
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We purchased a home in 2013 and were told there was no HOA.

Customer Question

We purchased a home in 2013 and were told there was no HOA. We are on a small cul-de-sac street in the middle of an older established neighborhood, so there is no neighborhood sign, common grounds, pool, park etc. There were lots/land that was across the street and behind our home that was all privately held. However this land was sold nearly a year ago to a developer, separate to the developer that built the 7 original homes on our small street. This new builder was a lower quality builder than the custom homes on our street, though this was not a challenge until we received a registered letter in the mail from this builder saying that 21 homes (our 7 + the 14 homes he built on the open land that was sold to him) was part of a community.
During this initial meeting we were informed that back in 2003 the original builder established an HOA and as he held the majority of lots, held super majority and as 60% of the lots weren’t built, this was never enacted. However at the time of purchase for all 7 homes, none were told 1) of this HOA and 2) that this other land and our 7 homes were a part of a “community”.
This builder has advised we as the homeowners must take over the HOA as they are not done building. However the majority of homeowners don’t want the HOA and were also told there was no HOA by this latest developer.
1) Do we as the homeowners have to take over the HOA ? The majority do not want it and majority were told there wasn’t one at time of purchase.
2) If we must take over the HOA, and as the builder has acknowledged their knowing of this HOA while building, do we have legal action, per the below in the by-laws that the builder has given us as established in 2003:
Section 3.3
(c) The exterior of any structure shall be constructed of first quality material, as approved by the Board. Unless the Board shall determine otherwise, wood siding, cedar shingles and stucco may not exceed 75% of the exposed area.
The new homes they have built are all wood sided, while the original homes are brick.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Ray replied 1 year ago.

Hi and welcome to JA. I am Ray and will be the expert helping you today.

Here in South Carolina "abolishing", or correctly stated, "dissolving" the HOA is really a two step process. First step would be to attain the required number of votes, per your CCRs for "termination of HOA". Usually this requires a rather high % of votes, usually 60% and greater. I've heard of some CCRs that require a 100% vote. After this is accomplished, the corp needs to be dissolved. This process must be carried out in accordance with state statutes.

You guys as an HOA here will need a lawyer to help dissolve the HOA. I twill likely have to be transferred to the owners and they have to then agree to dissolve it.If there are any existing rules here for the HOA they must be followed as far as voting.

Here are the current laws.They address HOAs but not the dissolution this would be found in any CCRs or rules of the HOA and would control here.

http://www.scstatehouse.gov/sess119_2011-2012/bills/218.htm

Your HOA is going to need a lawyer as this affects all of you and you may also want to sue the builder here

and title company if this was not disclosed.Also the seller of your house may also be liable as well.

There may have been multiple violations here by the developer and you may be able to sue here for several of them including loss of value since the other homes are out of compliance.

I appreciate the chance to help you today.Please let me know if you have more follow up.Thanks again.

Expert:  Ray replied 1 year ago.

Lawyer referral for you here..

http://www.lawyers.com/Homeowners-Association-Law/South-Carolina/find-law-firms-by-city/

I am so sorry that you are having to go through all of this.You may decide to sue here and seek some justice and compensation.

Expert:  Ray replied 1 year ago.

If you can leave a positive rating it is always much appreciated.

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