Common interest community managers are tasked with covenants control/enforcement at the associations they are contracted to manage. I would submit that this is not a task anyone enjoys, but it is made more difficult by the lengths that owners go to in order to circumvent the rules of their community. Mind you, every owner wants the rules enforced for their neighbors, but tend to be offended when they are asked to comply with their association rules. Some of the interesting violations managers are faced with are:
Temporary home rentals via an online registry by several companies (which I am not going to publish for obvious reasons) allow owners to collect a daily rate for renting their residences in violation of virtually every community association in the country. I recently got suspicious of this practice in one of our managed communities only to discover that there were rentals in other associations as well! When confronted, the owner denied it until I provided proof of the online listing, photos, reviews and number of times they had used the community as a hotel! If you are considering this, consult with association counsel when you discover the violations. These short-term rentals pose all sorts of risk liabilities for the community.
While out in the community performing inspections, I see an owner walking with their dog without a leash and there is no doggie-do bag in sight. “Why is your pet not on a leash?” I ask. “I just live right there (pointing to his home two houses away), I won’t be long.” I remind him of the association rules, including the responsibility to pick up any pet deposit, and he tells me to mind my own business. “The rule also protects you and your animal“, I say to him as he walks away muttering obscenities. By the way this is actually, truly is my business!
Peeling off Transponders
Owners in gated communities can access their community via an “owner only” gate. The transponder device allows automatic operation of the gate or bar to open for the safety and convenience of the residents. Occasionally, an owner will give their transponder to an unregistered person (friend, relative, or boyfriend) and purchase another because “their old one stopped working”. This only works if the manager does not have a policy of deactivating any reported lost, stolen, or missing transponders (due to the transfer or sale of a vehicle). When the device is deactivated, they complain (angrily) that “the thing is not working” they forget the lie they told when they requested a new one. Trust me, they will try. Be prepared.
Cheaters gonna cheat.
Endeavor to persevere.
Tanoa Lynne Poirier is the Managing Principal at Poirier Enterprises Inc., specializing in the management of community associations, commercial and investment properties, and individual residences in South Florida.
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