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Barrister
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 33707
Experience:  15 years real estate, Realtor. Landlord 26 years
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I live in an apartment/home owners condo complex, the home

Customer Question

I live in an apartment/home owners condo complex , the home owners have a HOA. Well I recently was in an auto accident ( hit from behind ) the cost of repair was more then the car value , so I settled with the insurance and bought the car back from the insurance company for a reasonable cost. Well after all was done a week later I have a warning on my car from the office manager. I ask about the warning , the office manager stated I have to park my car off the premises because it's an eye sore. Mind you I live on a limited income and in a very bad neighborhood. She states that is the HOA's policy, mind you I am only a renter not a home owner. Is that legal ? She said if I fixed my car I could keep it on premise , can they force me into the corner this way ?
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Barrister replied 8 months ago.

Hello and welcome! My name is ***** ***** I am a licensed attorney who will try my very best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can. There may be a slight delay in my responses as I research statutes or ordinances and type out an answer or reply, but rest assured, I am working on your question.

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Did you ask for a copy of any HOA rule against "eyesores" that the manager is referring to?.

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Did your lease include the right to park on the property? (you were parking there fine before the accident, right?)

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thanks

Barrister

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I never received a copy of the HOA rule book , I have been there for three and a half years and have always parked on premises . The tenant contract is the only thing I received , I reread it to make sure nothing about parking a wrecked vehicle was over looked .
Expert:  Barrister replied 8 months ago.

Ok, then the manger is likely bluffing you. Tell them that you would like to see the specific rule that prohibits parking on the property with a damaged vehicle. If he can't provide a copy of an actual rule, then you can tell him to go jump off a cliff and stop bothering you or you will file a criminal complaint for harassment.

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thanks

Barrister

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
She did show me the rule in the HOA hand book but I never received the book or knew it existed. She followed my rebuttal by adding , " if you did not get one, we can provide you with one ", but I am not an owner nor was this obscure book introduced to me when I signed my lease. That should count for something . Had I , I would not have accepted the insurance offer. The car runs great and is street legal
Expert:  Barrister replied 8 months ago.

Ok, that changes things if they actually have an established rule about damaged vehicles. Since it is private property, they can establish whatever rules they want to for the property under the guise of keeping it neat and tidy looking..

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Your landlord should have provided you with a copy of the rules, as he is negligent in not doing so, but ultimately, they will be able to enforce the rule as long as it is clearly defined. If it says something like "no eyesores" then you could challenge it as being vague since there is no legal definition of what an eyesore is. But this would require you to sue them under a breach of contract claim if they tried some punitive action against you and try to have the rule declared "void for vagueness".

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thanks

Barrister

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
there is nothing I can do, no legal rebuttal ? Being 63 and living in or next to the highest crime area and no short distance to where they expect you to park , not to mention my car will be striped , they have done that to cars in the gated property. Nothing can be done??
Expert:  Barrister replied 8 months ago.

Well, you can ignore their demands and see what they do. But if they have your car towed, that creates another problem entirely new for you as you then would have to pay to get your car released. You could try to sue your landlord for any damages for him not making you aware of the rule about damaged cars, but that wouldn't stop any negative action from the complex..

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If they fined you or did something else like that, as I mentioned, you can challenge the rule as being too vague to be enforceable if it is completely subjective based on someone's opinion of what an eyesore is. If they don't clearly define what is prohibited, then default state law controls and there is no restriction there as long as the vehicle is titled and registered and insured.

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I am very sorry that I don’t have better news, but please understand that I do have an ethical and professional obligation to provide customers with legally correct answers based on my knowledge and experience, even when I know the answer doesn’t make the customer happy...

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thanks

Barrister

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I completely understand your position and I want to thank you for your professional insight . Thank you again .
Expert:  Barrister replied 8 months ago.

You are very welcome, even if the news is kind of lousy..

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thanks much

Barrister

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