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Protecting yourself when your HOA says you’re behind on fees

On Behalf of | Jun 24, 2021 | HOA Law |

Purchasing a home in a homeowner’s association (HOA) community in Arizona is often a smart move. An HOA helps establish specific standards for the community. The association will help protect all of the property owners from the bad behavior of a few people.  

The rules in place help protect property values and ensure that homeowners can exercise their right to quiet enjoyment of their property without negative consequences from the behavior of others. The HOA will enforce rules that limit parties, require people to mow their lawns and otherwise be good neighbors.   

One of your responsibilities as an HOA homeowner will be to pay fees to the association to cover their operating costs and any community amenities that they provide. You probably do your best to make all of the necessary payments and stay on top of your obligations to your HOA. Unfortunately, mistakes do happen. What is at risk if you received notice that you have fallen substantially behind on your HOA fees and assessments? 

The HOA could take enforcement action against you 

The state law in Arizona authorizes a homeowner’s association to take multiple different steps to collect on unpaid fees find an assessment. The HOA can even add interest to the amount you didn’t pay. They can send you a letter or cut you off from community services, ranging from gym access to social events.  

If the amount that you owe goes over $1,200, your HOA could even take you to court to initiate foreclosure proceedings on the property. Obviously, it’s important to remain in compliance or to quickly resolve any oversights regarding the non-payment of HOA fees. Before you pull out your checkbook, however, you may want to talk with someone familiar with HOA law. 

Reviewing certain records can help you defend yourself 

Especially in cases where you strongly believe that you have continually met your financial obligations to the HOA, you may need help when they claim you have not made necessary payments.   

Reviewing the HOA’s covenants, conditions and restrictions or their bylaws can help you discover mistakes made by the HOA in their assessment against you. Understanding your rights and reviewing all the necessary documentation can help you push back against fees and any attempt to place a lien against your property