California Condo & HOA News

Back to homepage

HOA Homefront: The board balancing act

The ancient Chinese concept of yin and yang deals with opposite and inseparable forces. Common interest developments, or homeowner associations, have their own “yin and yang” issues, in which four basic and inseparable priorities must be balanced to produce a

Read More

California Court of Appeal Ruling Eliminates Strict Liability Standard for Supplier of Chinese Building Products

On January 26, 2017, the California Court of Appeal for the Fourth Appellate District, Division One, issued a 51 page ruling in Acqua Vista Homeowners Association v. MWI, Inc., D068406 (San Diego Superior Court No. 37-2009-00104348-CU-CD-CTL) which eliminated strict liability

Read More

HOA Homefront: Are we STILL dealing with drought? (CA)

Q:  Regarding water cutbacks and dead lawns, can an HOA require homeowners who stopped watering to replace their dead lawns with other types of ground cover such as drought tolerant landscaping, compost, artificial turf, etc? Or are we stuck with

Read More

Trial for an alleged HOA embezzler delayed (CA)

The trial was delayed Friday for a man accused of being a co-conspirator in an embezzlement case involving nearly $2.8 million from a San Mateo homeowners association, according to the San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office.    Read the article……….

Read More

Saratoga: HOAs can operate neighborhood security cameras (CA)

Neighborhood surveillance cameras operated by bona fide homeowners associations for security purposes can operate in public rights-of-way with an encroachment permit, city attorney Richard Taylor told the city council at a recent meeting.  Cameras, like the two already installed as

Read More

Yes, HOA Can Sell Property for Delinquent Fees (CA)

Howard Rich purchased a single-family residence at an execution sale. The execution sale was conducted to satisfy a judgment against Yung-Shen Steven Lee. Rich was a third-party purchaser. The plaintiff and judgement creditor was Spyglass Hill Community Association, the HOA

Read More

Sinking Millennium Tower’s condo owners hire Trump’s lawyer

Condo owners at San Francisco’s sinking Millennium Tower are raising the stakes in their fight to get the infamous downtown building fixed — hiring a celebrity Los Angeles lawyer in anticipation of suing the developer.  Residents of the 58-story high-rise

Read More

Who will pay for San Francisco’s $750 million tilting tower? (CA)

The 58-story tower’s shine faded on May 10, 2016, when Agabian attended a homeowners association meeting and was informed that the building had sunk 16 inches into the earth and tilted over 15 inches at its tip and 2 inches

Read More

HOA Homefront: Don’t be caught napping; your rights at risk! (CA)

Some well-intentioned ideas can boomerang and hurt those who are intended to be helped. Such is the new Civil Code 4041, created by last year’s SB918.  Section 4041 appears intended to protect homeowners by requiring annual reminders to keep their

Read More

HOA Homefront: Who’s meeting is it (I wasn’t invited)

Q. In the spirit of shedding light on HOA governance, would you please write about the difference between regular open board meetings and the annual homeowners association meeting. I am specifically interested in your view on how the agendas are

Read More

Appellate Court Overturns $24 Million Judgment for HOA in SB800 Case (CA)

The Court of Appeal for the Fourth Appellate District just overturned a $24 Million verdict in favor of a San Diego County HOA. Despite the jury verdict in favor of the HOA, the Court of Appeal overturned the verdict, and

Read More

Millennium Tower Residents Complain That Building Not Only Sinks, It Stinks

A new report via a resident at the nicknamed Leaning Tower of San Francisco, a.k.a. Millennium Tower adds further fuel to homeowners’ rage about the developer’s alleged construction shortcuts. Against the advice of the homeowners’ association attorney, 31st floor resident

Read More

HOA Homefront: Unruly meetings or meeting rules (CA)

Other than the overall condition of the common areas, one of the first opportunities for associations to make a positive impression upon new members is at meetings of the board of directors. Where does a new owner learn how board

Read More

Man Whose Daughter Died Sues Landlord and Homeowner’s Association (CA)

A man whose daughter and grandchild died in a 2015 blaze at an Inglewood condominium complex is suing the landlord and the homeowners association, alleging unsafe conditions led to the fire and trapped the woman inside her unit.   Deontae

Read More

Authorities issue evacuation notice for Camarillo Springs (CA)

Authorities will issue a voluntary evacuation notice in Camarillo Springs on Sunday as a storm moves into the area.  An evacuation notice will take effect at 6 a.m. The forecast calls for rainfall rates to reach a half-inch to one

Read More

La Jolla crosswalk horror story (CA)

Aavang is now suing the City of San Diego, the driver, as well as a nearby homeowners’ association for failing to maintain surrounding trees. According to public records obtained by the Reader, residents had complained of the dangerous intersection to

Read More

4 Injured in San Jose Condo Fire (CA)

Four people, including a San Jose firefighter, were injured in a 2-alarm blaze that broke out at a condo complex at Florence Ave. and Nancy Lane on Wednesday.   Two people from the apartment managed to get out and were

Read More

Condo HOA Gets More Than $8 Million for Building Defects

Residents of the Arts District condominium complex the Barker Block have received more than $8 million to settle lawsuits that allege construction defects. Building occupants had long complained of problems including leaks and plumbing shutdowns.    Read the article………….

Read More

Millennium Tower Developer Balks at Publicizing Repair Plan, Documents Show (CA)

Documents obtained Tuesday by NBC Bay Area show that the developer of the Millennium Tower is balking at turning over any plans of a fix for the sinking and leaning structure, claiming such information is secret as part of ongoing

Read More

Tesoro couple fights HOA over tree removal (CA)

When John and Irma Dorrien moved into their Tesoro Del Valle home in Valencia more than 13 years they looked out on sparse open hills and had few neighbors.  They planted some pine trees in their backyard and set about

Read More

Laguna Woods Village directors prevail in suit against GRF (CA)

An Orange County Superior Court judge has awarded nearly $100,000 in attorney fees to one current and one former Golden Rain Foundation director, whose recalls from the board were overturned in July 2016.  Judge Robert J. Moss on Friday awarded

Read More

Why eliminating ‘exclusive use areas’ has issues

Q. Just read your article (on exclusive use common area) and was wondering the implication (pro and cons) and cost of transferring an exclusive common area into a unit. That way, the owner gets full control of the common area

Read More

60 firefighters extinguish two-story condo blaze in Tustin (CA)

Sixty county firefighters extinguished a blaze Monday morning that began in the attic above an unoccupied second floor of an apartment in the 1400 block of Red Hill Avenue within about 25 minutes, fire Capt. Alan Wilkes said.  “The apartment

Read More

Bicycles barred, case closed on battle over Wild Oak path (CA)

After a long, fruitless legal battle over whether or not bicyclists have the right to use a public easement through a private subdivision that borders Oakmont near Trione-Annadel State Park, the City of Santa Rosa has withdrawn it’s latest appeal,

Read More

HOA Homefront: A few minutes about minutes

Q. Our president has delegated our property manager to run our homeowners meetings and he acts like the board works for him and has to agree with everything he proposes. He gets rude and obnoxious when the board does not

Read More

New changes, same division for Oxnard Shores community (CA)

A new chapter in the contentious saga that has grown to define the coastal neighborhood of Oxnard Shores has begun, but it remains to be seen whether the divisiveness will subside.  Central to the neighborhood disagreement is short-term rentals and

Read More

More Millennium Tower residents sue developer, city (CA)

Following November’s lawsuit, 20 tower residents led by Jerry Dodson, a former government litigator who also happens to live in the offending building, launched yet another suit against both the city and building developer Millennium Partners.  The complaint alleges that

Read More

HOA Homefront: What about laundries in units?

Q. Our HOA prohibits washers/dryers in upstairs units. When this rule was adopted, owners who already had washer/dryers were allowed to keep them but no more would be allowed.  When the unit is sold, can the new owner keep the

Read More

Woman rescued from condo fire in San Francisco (CA)

San Francisco firefighters rescued a woman found inside of a burning condominium this morning. The fire was reported by residents of the Forest Knolls neighborhood around 8:00 A.M. Thursday.  Residents say the owner of the condo was at work when

Read More

Both sides of Mandalay shores short-term rental dispute court ruling claim victory (CA)

The battle over whether short-term residential rentals should be permitted is raging all along the California coast and has gotten far worse since on-line rental services have boomed. Investigations into feasibility of banning or severe restrictions by cities such as

Read More

HOA Homefront: Can we eliminate exclusive use areas?

Q. Just read your article (on exclusive use common area) and was wondering the implication (pro and cons) and cost of transferring an exclusive common area into a unit. That way, the owner gets full control of the common area

Read More

City Attorney Targeted in Leaning Tower Suit (CA)

Retired Bay Area IP litigator Gerald “Jerry” Dodson on Friday followed through on a threat to sue the San Francisco City Attorney’s Office—among other defendants—in connection with the sinking and tilting of the Millennium Tower, the luxury high-rise where he

Read More

UPDATE: Woman badly burned in Forest Knolls condo fire (CA)

A woman was badly burned in a two-alarm fire in a condominium in San Francisco’s Forest Knolls neighborhood Thursday morning, according to residents.  The fire was reported at 8:05 a.m. in a three-story, three-bedroom unit at 622 Clarendon Ave., according

Read More

Homeowners, HOA clash over landscape rules (CA)

Richard and Carole DeProspo say they wanted to curb their outdoor water use in light of the drought, not pick a costly fight with their homeowners association.  And yet that’s where they’ve found themselves—headed to court to ask a judge

Read More

Natural gas explosion causes serious damage to National City Condo building (CA)

A natural gas leak in a brand new condominium complex in National City led to an explosion Monday afternoon. The units were within weeks of being ready for occupancy but now at least two of them are going to need

Read More

Grandfather them or ban them: A washout on laundries?

Q. Our HOA prohibits washers/dryers in upstairs units. When this rule was adopted, owners who already had washer/dryers were allowed to keep them but no more would be allowed. When the unit is sold, can the new owner keep the

Read More

Sand Canyon HOA Prepares For Potential Of Mudslides (CA)

The Sand Fire scorched over 40,000 acres near Sand Canyon this summer. And the recent rain puts this area at risk again.  “After a fire, there is a layer of film on the top of the soil,” said Inspector Gustavo

Read More

The drought defense: Homeowners take association to court over landscaping fines (CA)

Richard and Carole DeProspo say they wanted to curb their outdoor water use in light of the drought, not pick a costly fight with their homeowners association.  And yet that’s where they’ve found themselves—headed to court to ask a judge

Read More

Bad lawsuit, bad argument, bad outcome (CA)

For six years, we hoped that reason would prevail in Santa Rosa’s legal squabble with homeowners in a gated community near Oakmont that has tried to block bicyclists from crossing through their territory. But reason has lost. So have bicyclists.

Read More

Santa Rosa settles 6-year-old case over Wild Oak access (CA)

More than six years after Santa Rosa tried to force a gated community to let bicyclists roll through its leafy neighborhood, the city has thrown in the towel with little to show for it but big legal bills and embarrassment.

Read More

HOA Homefront: Do city laws trump HOA restrictions?

Q. Recently, we have had issues with projects and proposed projects that involve city regulations versus CC&R restrictions. Our board seems to think that the requirements in our CC&Rs are unenforceable if the city has already approved the projects. I

Read More

Jury trial date set for alleged HOA embezzler (CA)

The jury trial date for Michael Anthony Medeiros, an alleged HOA embezzler, was confirmed for Feb. 21, according to the San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office.  Medeiros, 58, was an alleged co-conspirator with Susan Marie Lambert in embezzling $2.8 million

Read More

Dozens displaced by condo fire in Concord (CA)

More than two dozen people are without a home after a fire burned a condo building on Laguna Street in Concord Monday afternoon.  The families who call this place home are struggling to find another place to live.    Read

Read More

CA: New year and new HOA laws ahead

2016 was a relatively quiet year for HOAs in Sacramento, with only three bills passing to become law in 2017, and another law taking effect in 2017 from a 2014 bill. Another significant new HOA law actually came from the

Read More

Neighbors Fight To Keep Evicted Nuns From Moving Soup Kitchen Into SF Condo (CA)

Residents at 1930 Mission Street are trying to block the nuns from relocating their soup kitchen to the building.  The lawyer for the homeowners association wouldn’t comment for this report.  But, he filed a letter with the city’s planning department,

Read More

HOA Homefront: How an open forum can both be helpful – and hazardous

Q. I read your column most weekends with great interest. One subject I do not recall seeing handled recently is the right to speak at board meetings. Our association has a Homeowners Forum for owners. However, some owners also claim

Read More

Ramona Property Manager Charged with Fraud (CA)

A Ramona property manager and his company were charged Monday with four counts of wire fraud in connection with a scheme to defraud a homeowners association of $247,000.  Robert Walsh, 37, allegedly made false claims that his firm, Cornerstone Management

Read More

‘Frustrated, Enraged, Embarrassed’: Racial Graffiti at Gated OC Community Being Investigated (CA)

Residents of a gated community in Orange County demanded action from authorities after they say it took too long for their homeowners association to clean up the messages of hate that were sprayed over a community sign.   Read the article…………..

Read More

HOA Homefront: Which law do we follow? readers ask

Q. Recently we have had issues with projects and proposed projects that involve city regulations vs. CC&R restrictions. Our board seems to think that the requirements in our CC&Rs are unenforceable if the city has already approved the projects. I

Read More

Strand Beach access gates are removed after 6-year fight (CA)

The gates through the center of an exclusive oceanfront community – the focus of a six-year legal battle over public access to the popular Strand Beach – were taken down Thursday morning.  Their removal is a victory for the California

Read More