Our Primary Goals
The health and stability of our neighborhoods and housing market affects millions of American voters and taxpayers. Many private, association-governed residential communities in the U.S. face substantial economic challenges, that result in social discord and adverse effects to resident health, family stability, and general well-being.
Housing is the biggest expense in a typical American's budget. Your home should be your largest asset, not your largest liability. All Americans are entitled to equal protection under the law, and those protections must apply those who reside in association-governed communities.
Goal 1 - Restore Constitutional law in association-governed communities.
Governance within a Homeowners Association is organized under corporate law, and therefore not currently required to be bound by Constitutional law. To put it simply, in homeowner associations, the U.S. Bill of Rights does not apply. That means 70 million Americans are not receiving equal protection under the law. The resulting inequality contributes to abusive governance, discrimination through selective enforcement, frequent conflict and abuse of the legal system, erosion of property and privacy rights, and unnecessary stress adversely affecting the health and safety of Americans, with a disproportionate effect on the most vulnerable, particularly minorities and senior citizens.
Because these issues affect the Constitutional rights of millions of Americans, and pose a significant financial risk to the economic health of our nation, we believe they deserve national attention and policy change.
Goal 2 - Require mandatory disclosure at NO COST to the consumer.
As a result of the real estate downturn of 2008, many association boards and property management companies began charging exorbitant fees to a real estate buyer for a simple click of a mouse to receive an electronic document. Overnight, a nationwide online industry of HOA document resellers virtually sprang up. Buyers may be charged anywhere from $75 to $4,000 to receive disclosures--only to find out they may well want to walk away from a fiscally unhealthy association.
Documents for sale typically include a property report, financials and budgets, litigation disclosure, declaration and bylaws or the community's Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions. Some real estate buyers are charged fees in the thousands of dollars. In no other segment of the free market are consumers charged in advance to receive critical facts and figures in order to make an informed and educated purchase decision. This is yet another example of housing discrimination.
Currently, real estate buyers are required to receive some federally mandated disclosures prior to signing a sales contract. These include the Environmental Protection Agency's Lead Based Paint Disclosure and Radon Disclosure. Since 1974, the Department of Housing and Urban Development has required consumers receive full disclosure of all settlement costs associated with a real estate transaction. Effective October of 2015, the disclosure has been strengthened through the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure rule. Consumers in association-governed communities need to understand what they are purchasing before they commit to buying, and should never be charged for the disclosures.