HOA Covenants Defenseless Against HUD AFFH
Homeowner Associations need to be notified about the new insultingly misnamed Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing, AFFH, rule and HUD’s intent on ignoring local zoning laws, not the least of which are HOA covenants.
Neighborhoods with HOA’s are typically in desireable suburb locations where the value of both the homes within the HOA and the surrounding land is above average value. Do you know of any HOA’s with spacious grassy areas set aside with perhaps a children’s playground with picnic tables and perhaps an open land across the street? Well investors seeking to develop low income housing will have their eye on such open spaces too if your community takes HUD grants making your community a targeted locality that can result in developers effectively ignoring HOA covenants and local zoning laws when dwarfed by lawsuits against your city or county government due to AFFH allegations from activist groups. Based on HUD’s new data mapping tool and the new AFFH grant application process HUD is building a database of potentially available property volunteered via the applications. Remember the promise, “If you like your HOA, you can keep your HOA”, I mean doctor!
So if you want to defend your local government, your HOA and your property rights then notify HOA’s that can be affected. But how do you identify and locate them you ask? It’s not necessarily easy unless you by chance know a resident who has an HOA a newsletter. If you’re in Colorado, for example, you may be lucky where all community associations are required to register with the Department of Regulatory Agencies, Division of Real Estate or lose their lien rights and the ability to enforce recorded covenants. The complete Colorado HOA Roster is available for download (8299 records), but just to give you advance warning, there may be a problem with the way the HOA information is registered, the names may not match up with what you expect with regard to the registered information; but hopefully there will be information for you use or at least get started.
If you reside in a locality accepting CDBG subsidies and targeted by HUD, contact HOA board members and inform them about AFFH and ask them to do their own research (using this website). They most likely don’t know anything about AFFH as HUD has done such an effective job in cloaking it. If your locality is targeted, your overriding objective should be to build support for local policy makers to not accept federal grants and to not to participate in updating HUD’s database. The HOA is a prime source for trickling down the dangers about AFFH to home owners and getting resolutions to send up to local policy makers.
If possible attend local board meetings to simply notify them about AFFH, the rest should take care of itself. The gross majority, more than 80%, do not want the government involved in affecting the use of personal property.