Lara Plan Leaves Home, Condo, Apartment Insurance Unaffordable and Unavailable, Says Consumer Watchdog (CA)

Home insurance will remain unaffordable and unobtainable for many Californians under new rules proposed by Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara today, said Consumer Watchdog.  The proposed regulations purport to require insurance companies to increase sales to homeowners in “distressed areas.” However, the proposal would not require insurance companies to charge a price that consumers are able […]

Nonprofit Organizations Pay Over $5.8 Million to Resolve Allegations of Fraudulently Obtaining Pandemic-Related Loans (CA)

Multiple nonprofit organizations—including two private country clubs and two homeowners associations—have paid $5,809,021.60 to settle allegations that they violated the False Claims Act by knowingly submitting false claims and obtaining Paycheck Protection Program loans for which they were not eligible.   Read the article…………………………….

Two rescued from burning two-story condominium in Pittsburg (CA)

Contra Costa County Fire Protection District crews rescued two people from the upper floor of a two-story condominium as it burned Monday, fire officials said.   Both were in critical condition Monday afternoon after being rushed by ambulance to a hospital.    Read the article…………………………….

HOA Homefront: 13 things HOA service providers need to know (CA)

This is part four of a five-part series on HOA management. 1. The client is the HOA corporation, not the president or any individual director. Make sure you know whether the person instructing you or your staff is authorized to speak on behalf of the HOA.     Read the article…………………………….

California condos discounted by up to 25% amid struggling sales

High end condo apartments in San Francisco are being discounted by up to 25 percent as developers struggle to sell them.  Despite their top of the range amenities and luxury finishes, studios once listed for $500,000 are currently being sold for closer to $350,000.   Read the article…………………………….

Plaintiff Sues Downer Estates Homeowners Association Over Dog Attack Incident (CA)

According to the court documents, Karen Sue Luster was attacked by a Pitbull on October 3, 2023, while she was near her property at 775 Delaware Ave Apt. 3 in San Jose. The plaintiff alleges that the defendants—Yvette Turcios, Erick Turcios, Luke Glaros, and Downer Estates Homeowners Association—owned and controlled the dog that caused her […]

HOA fees are standing out in a bad way (CA)

Affording today’s housing market isn’t always so simple, which is why HOA fees aren’t easy to digest for some buyers. Today, I thought it would be cool to graph a few decades of association fees. I’ve never actually done this before, and while I know it’s total chaos, I think it’s also interesting. What are […]

Mail theft victims petition HOA for safety changes to cluster mailboxes (CA)

There is finger-pointing in a North Natomas neighborhood about who is responsible for making mailboxes safer after years of mail thefts.  The residents of Rockmont Circle are gathering signatures for a petition demanding the HOA replace older cluster boxes with sturdier ones.  Kelly Obrecht said since she works at home, she’s turned into the neighborhood […]

HOA Homefront: Did they change our rules properly? (CA)

Kelly,  If the board decides to change any rules shouldn’t those rule changes be placed on the open general session board meeting agenda for discussion and vote of the board members before being sent out for the 28-day comment period? Is it a violation to make this decision in executive session, without first putting it […]

HOA Homefront: Is it our manager or is it us?

Many associations struggle with a poor manager relationship, resulting in frustration for both sides. However, such struggles are sometimes created by the board and not the manager. Therefore, these can be resolved by a change in board practices.  Truly, some managers are simply not cut out for the job. The need for excellent HOA managers […]

Solano Real Estate Scene: Condo crisis in California

When a person buys a condo and needs a loan, the buyer must qualify, the condo must be appraised, and the condo project and HOA must be analyzed and approved by the lender.  The last time the condo market experienced a crisis was after the crash of 2008 when an estimated 10,000 condo owners across […]

Judge declares Tahoe poison test illegal (CA)

The state water board in charge of Lake Tahoe broke California laws and its own regulations by allowing a homeowners association to put poison into the lake water, per a ruling by an El Dorado County Superior Court Judge.   Read the article…………………………….

HOA Homefront: Officers, who does what? (CA)

Kelly,  I am a sitting board member for our HOA and we are coming up next week with our annual board election and a possible change of president (which is badly needed). As of right now, we have only three board members present out of five due to one moving away and another just resigned.  […]

Two-Alarm Fire at Condo Complex in Long Beach (CA)

A two-alarm fire was hard to access for Long Beach Fire. The residents started evacuating, taking the provided hose lines off the wall, and fighting the fire until the fire department arrived.     Read the article…………………………….

HOA Homefront: What to do with outdated election rules and candidate statements (CA)

Q: Our HOA ballot package for the board election included 3 candidate statements that endorsed themselves as a slate, one of whom also criticized their opponent.  In the past, candidate statements included bios, qualifications, and what they had done or will do, but did not mention opponents or endorse other candidates. The nomination forms asked […]

Bay Area condo war widens after $1 million units sell for just $32,000 (CA)

The auctioning of several downtown San Jose condominiums has spawned a widening legal war now that a troubled China-based real estate firm has filed a new lawsuit in the increasingly tangled case.  China-based Z&L Properties has filed a lawsuit against winning bidders in an auction last week of the downtown San Jose condos, as well […]

Z&L Properties sues over sale of “$1M” San Jose condos for $32K (CA)

Z&L Properties has sued bidders who violated a court restraining order to buy 10 condominiums auctioned at cut-rate prices in Downtown San Jose.  The China-based developer filed the lawsuit against two buyers as well as San Diego-based Nationwide Reconveyance, a trustee for a homeowners association at a 320-unit condo tower    Read the article…………………………….

More homeowners forced into California Fair Plan coverage

Most people never hear about the California FAIR Plan until their homeowner’s insurance gets canceled.  “It’s not a normal home insurance policy,” said Amy Bach, executive director of the nonprofit United Policyholders. “It only covers fire, lightning, internal explosion. It doesn’t cover water damage, leaks, your toilet overflows.”    Read the article…………………………….

San Jose towers owner gets court to order delay for condo foreclosures (CA)

The owner of a double-tower housing complex in downtown San Jose has won a court order to temporarily halt a foreclosure proceeding to seize control of several condos in the high-rises.  China-based Z&L Properties faces a foreclosure attempt due to delinquencies that have arisen from unpaid dues to the homeowners association for unsold condos in […]

HOA Homefront – Reader Questions – Election By Acclamation (CA)

Hello Kelly, I came across an article in which you answered a question about election by acclamation. There is a lot of information on the internet about acclamation, but one item does not seem to be answered. Perhaps you can assist. Once a board determines/votes to elect candidates by acclamation at an open board meeting, […]

Ocean Beach condo owners fear their homes will fall in the ocean (CA)

The sign in front of the Oceana condominium complex perfectly explains the problem: Unstable cliffs. Danger. Stay back. But what does that mean for owners of the 13 units? Every time water washes up on the rocks at the base of the cliff, the owners are hit with a wave of concern.  “The fear is […]

Santa Monica luxury towers, HOA fees, alleged theft: Where did the millions go? (CA)

Residents didn’t grasp the scale of the alleged problems until last year — when a Los Angeles County grand jury handed down a 119-count indictment accusing both Spahis, now-former Ocean Towers Housing Corp. President Joseph Orlando and his wife, Dorothy, of grand theft, identity theft and money laundering.   Read the article…………………………….

Residents of Southern California condo complex living in fear of neighbor

After months of scary incidents and vandalism, some residents of a Long Beach condo complex say they’re tired of living in fear of a neighbor.  Multiple people who live in the Gladys Avenue condo complex spoke with KTLA 5’s Sara Welch, saying that a man has threatened them and broken several windows of the homes […]

HOA Homefront: Why members won’t volunteer (CA)

Filling open HOA board seats is a vexing and discouraging problem for some associations.  There may be reasons why neighbors are not interested in serving.  Could any of the below characteristics describe your association?  Do directors spend many hours each week on HOA business, inspecting the property, observing vendors, and otherwise dealing with the HOA’s […]

Residents salvage what they can after blaze at Lomita condo building (CA)

Authorities said it was a kitchen fire in one of the units that ignited much of the building in the 2100 block of Palos Verdes Drive North, the heat so intense that a portion of the condo building’s second floor collapsed.  “It’s horrible, like what happened? How is it from here to the very end? […]

Massive fire rips through condo complex in Lomita (CA)

Firefighters were dispatched to battle the fire, located at the Vista Verde Condominium complex in the 2000 bock of Palos Verdes Drive, at around 6:40 p.m., according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department. In all, they say there are around 150 firefighters engaged with the blaze.   Read the article…………………………….

San Francisco Tenderloin condo building gets fence to keep drug market out (CA)

A new fence, installed by a nonprofit organization, was installed in San Franciscos Tenderloin on Wednesday. Its purpose is to deter open drug dealing that has overwhelmed the area in recent years, even by Tenderloin standards. Some neighbors say the fence at McAllister and Leavenworth streets is a step in the right direction. The nonprofit […]

Oakland HOAs are quietly installing surveillance cameras to watch public roads (CA)

Last October, the city of Oakland announced it would soon be installing 300 automated license plate readers—cameras that monitor public streets and instantly scan vehicle license plates, running them against “hot lists” for stolen cars or vehicles associated with crimes.  But the rollout of Oakland’s big new vehicle surveillance system has gotten bogged down as […]

California’s New Plans to Solve Home Insurance Crisis

California residents have seen several insurers end homeowner insurance policies as the state grapples with wildfires and natural disasters, but a new proposal seeks to solve the insurance crisis once and for all.  In March, Ricardo Lara, California’s insurance commissioner, unveiled his new plan to let insurance companies use specific models around future catastrophes to […]

State Farm to pull out of 72,000 California insurance policies

State Farm General Insurance Company has announced that it will non-renew approximately 30,000 California homeowners, rental dwelling, and other property insurance policies.  If you recall, last May, the insurer halted new homeowners policies being issued in the state, citing exposure related issues and a challenging reinsurance market environment.   Read the article…………………………….  

Q&A: HOA Balcony Repairs and Updates (CA)

Are you wondering about the balconies in your community? Well if you missed the presentation by ADAMS | STIRLING PLC regarding HOA balcony repairs and updates, here’s a follow-up Q&A by the Newsletter that may help.     Read the Q&A………………………………..

Eroding bluffs could send California homes tumbling into the ocean. What can be done?

In the summer of 2019, the Casa Mira Homeowners Association sought to armor a stretch of coastline near a condominium complex, apartment building, sewage line and California Coastal Trail segment but were only authorized by the Coastal Commission to build 50 feet of seawall to protect the apartments.  The association filed a lawsuit against the […]

Judge orders inspection of hoarder house in Ocean View Hills (CA)

She also blames neighbors for causing issues. At least three neighbors have filed restraining orders against Golden over the years, accusing her of harassment.  Also in the courtroom Tuesday, an attorney for the bank that Golden has a mortgage with, as well as an attorney for the homeowner’s association where she lives.     Read the […]

Editorial | Rio del Mar walkway battle: ‘To the barricades’ (CA)

The Great Rio del Mar Walkway Standoff has made national news.  The battle pits 27 property owners against the power of the state Coastal Commission, a headline-churning conflict that either shows the defiant spirit of the citizenry against a cumbersome state bureaucracy, or is yet another example of how wealthy people believe they can make […]

Is my HOA supposed to notify us in advance? (CA)

Q: My question is whether it is legal to raise one’s HOA fees without a prior notification of proposed increase. I am aware that the board has the authority to raise fees, but I’d like to know if it is legal to raise the without prior notification.   Read the Q&A………………………………..

The delicate balance of HOA assessments

Hello, dear readers, and welcome to the Real Estate Whisperer, where I tackle the ins and outs of 92101 living with a pinch of humor and a dash of reality. Today’s hot topic? The ever-dreaded HOA assessment increases. Yes, I can almost hear the collective groans from here. But before we hoist the pitchforks and […]

Canyon Lake POA employee receives prestigious industry award (CA)

Canyon Lake Property Owners Association (CLPOA) employee Harmony McNaughton received the prestigious 2024 California Association of Community Managers (CACM) Innovator Vision Award on Thursday, February 27, during the CACM Law Seminar & Expo at the Disneyland Hotel and Convention Center.  Read the article…………………………….

Homeowner Associations: Attorney’s Fees Are Not Fiduciary Duty Breach Tort Damages And $1.328 Million Fee Award Against Individual Directors Under Civil Code Section 5975 Reversed As A Matter Of Law. (CA)

In Colyear v. Rolling Hills Community Assn. of Rancho Palos Verdes, Case No. B308382 (2d Dist., Div. 4 Mar. 1, 2024) (partially published; fee discussion not published), plaintiff homeowner won a declaratory relief action based on a dispute over tree-trimming covenants in certain recorded Declarations, with the lower court awarding plaintiff over $1.328 million in […]