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Dimitry Esquire
Dimitry Esquire, Attorney
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 41221
Experience:  JA Mentor, multiple jurisdictions, specialize in business/contract disputes, estate creation & admin
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We recently moved into a neighborhood with an HOA. At move

Customer Question

We recently moved into a neighborhood with an HOA. At move in, our mailbox was dented and the door was broken. We replaced it with a black USPS approved mailbox that was black. All the other neighbors had theirs painted brown. Went out to get the mail today and our mailbox had also been painted brown by the HOA. It was painted shut and the flag to indicate outgoing mail was stuck. We had to take a screwdriver to the flag and the door to get our mail out. They did this without any communication with us. Is this legal?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Dimitry Esquire replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question. Please permit me to assist you with your concerns. That is a good question. I am afraid that it is legal, purely because the HOA has a right to demand an identical color and scheme from all owners (if such color is listed as such within the bylaws). In that situation the HOA can control the color that you use, and can indeed make modifications if you are not in compliance...and can also bill you for the trouble. As such I also suspect you may get a bill from them, adding insult to injury, over their painting of your mailbox. And yes, this is very much legal. Sincerely, ***** *****
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
What about the fact that they made our mailbox inaccessible without using tools to access our mail and use the flag to signify outgoing mail? We also notified them about the broken mailbox and they said it was our responsibility. Nothing was said about painting it, nor did they state they would paint it if it was not the proper color. We paid for the new mailbox. I will take them to court if they try to charge us for the crappy paint job that interfered with our mail service.
Expert:  Dimitry Esquire replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your follow-up. You can argue damages, and if you can show that they damaged the mailbox without good cause, you can demand reimbursement. But as far as taking them to court, while you can do so, I must warn you that typically the courts tend to defer to HOAs, so unless you can show that there was no language in the bylaws that signified a specific color, the HOA may end up prevailing. Sincerely, ***** *****
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Watch me.
Expert:  Dimitry Esquire replied 2 years ago.
Hi, I am not trying to argue with you, I am simply trying to provide you with an honest and a reasonable explanation of your chances. Sincerely, ***** *****