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REAL ESTATE MATTERS: Setting up HOA in existing development may be tough

Q: My husband inherited a private development that his father owned in West Virginia. How does one go about starting ... For this, you probably will need the help of a real estate attorney to guide you with the documentation and then the recording of ...

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By Ilyce Glink and Samuel JTamkinTribune Content Agency Q: My husband inherited a private development that his father owned in West VirginiaHow does one go about starting a homeowners association (HOA) for something like that? The lots were sold without any agreement about an HOAAll the extra costs like roads and sewer and snow removal have been covered privately, thus making this a non-profitable venture.A: We'd suggest you start by reviewing your father-in-law's files on the developmentIt seems highly unusual for a land developer to forget to set up a mechanism to have common expenses in a development paid and distribute responsibility for costs to all of the residents.When you review his files, we hope you'd find a document that should have been recorded on each property that your father-in-law soldThat document would have the name of the development and may also be labeled as the covenants, conditions and restrictions for the development, or could also have the name of an association.If you don't have access to the files, you might have to do a little research on the properties that your family still owns and the properties that your father-in-law soldWe can only hope that the properties you are dealing with are in a county that has created an online electronic systemIf they have, you'll be able to research the properties and obtain copies of the recorded documents for all the properties sold.We hope that your father-in-law set up the legal system for an association or other mechanism for collecting fees for common expensesIt's possible that he set the documentation up but never went through with notifying the owners of how and when they were supposed to pay for common area expensesIf you find the right documents and they are in place, you should be able to follow the documents to set up the mechanism for collecting fees and expenses.On the other hand, if your father-in-law never recorded anything on how to collect these costs, you may be in some troubleHomeowners may not be required to pay fees if the title to their properties doesn't require them to do itYou won't have a method to set it up, and you won't have a method to enforce the collection of money.You can go around to all the owners in the development and have them consent to an association and then record that document against all the propertiesFor this, you probably will need the help of a real estate attorney to guide you with the documentation and then the recording of the documents.Your last resort is hoping that everyone in the development will work with you in good faith and pay their fair share of the expensesYou may not be obligated to make repairs and pay for expenses that won't be reimbursed to youIf people don't want to pay, you may not have to provide the services.But, it's a double-edged swordYou want the development to succeed, but you need the money for those expensesIf people don't want to pay and you don't provide the services for repairs and other items, the development will deteriorateIn any case, we'd really suggest you talk to a real estate attorney near where your development is located to help you out.Contact Ilyce Glink and Samuel JTamkin through her website, 2017 Ilyce Glink and Samuel JTamkin About Us Sign up for daily e-mail Subscribe Reader ServicesMy ProfileFAQsContact UsAbout UsSubscribe NowVacation Stops/RestartsManage My AccountSubmissionsNews TipsCalendar EventsObituariesLegal NoticesLetter to the EditorBusiness NewsAnnouncementsAdvertisingDisplay an AdSpecial PublicationsClassified AdsPlace an AdAdvertise With UsPay Your Ad BillDigital MarketingOnline ServicesRSS FeedsPrint ArchivesMobile AppNewslettersDigital Services for Business var verticalContent = verticals_data['p'+3821+']; for(var key in verticalContent) { if(verticalContent.hasOwnProperty(key)) { var vc_title = verticalContent[key].title; var vc_url = verticalContent[key].url; var vc_html = '+vc_title+'; var vc_job = 'Jobs'; if(vc_title != ' && vc_title != 'NA' && vc_url != ' && vc_url != 'NA') { if(vc_title == 'Classifieds' || vc_title == 'Cars') { $('#footer-main-verticals ul').append(vc_html); } } if(vc_title == 'Jobs' && vc_url == 'NA') { $('#footer-main-verticals ul').append(vc_job); } } } ThriveHive

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