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Eileen Gilmo…, Real Estate Pro in Los Angeles, CA

Who is responsible? My client or the HOA?

Asked by Eileen Gilmore Lanza, Los Angeles, CA Tue Dec 29, 2009

Here is a situation my client is facing right now...thoughts?
"There is a roof leak over one of my bedrooms. The HOA had the roof patched up where the leak is but because of the location and type of roof are unable to guarantee the patching will hold. I also patched up the leak from the inside. The HOA is saying that the leak /hole is due to the prior owner having an oversized dish on the roof. I have no evidence that such a dish exsisted this is just what they are telling me. The HOA does not have the money to replace the entire roof nor do they feel its their responsibility due to the negligence of the prior owner."
Thanks in advance! Eileen Lanza Keller Williams

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Answers

5
You're welcome! Glad to be of help. One of the risks, though, of the REO sale. Good luck to your client.
Debbie Bremner
REALTOR
Certified Short Sale Professional
Certified Home Retention Specialist
(D) 818.564.6591
TheBremnerGroup@gmail.com
Blogging at: http://TheBremnerGroup.com/blog
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 30, 2009
There are 8 units total and this was an REO sale. Thanks for all your replies!!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 30, 2009
Under normal circumstances this is how it should work:

The prior homeowner should either have had HOA approval to install the dish or permission to do so through the CC&R's. This is easily traceable through the HOA minutes. If they did indeed have permission the CC&R's and/or the minutes should reflect that. They should also reflect remediation if the dish was removed. Request copies of the minutes, CC&R's, Rules & Regulations and Bylaws from the time the dish was installed, read them and see how this was handled. You may have to pay a small charge for the documents.

If they placed the dish on the roof without permission it was the HOA's responsibility to have the homeowner remove the dish and replace the roof to it's original condition when it was first installed.

Ultimately the HOA is usually responsible for the roof unless otherwise stated in the CC&R's. If the prior homeowner created damage, the HOA should be responsible for the repair and for reimbursement for expenses incurred from the prior homeowner. They would also likely be responsible for the interior repairs to the current home owners condo due to their negligence.

You do not state whether this is a large building with all of the condos under one roof or if it is a townhouse community. In some townhouse communities or PUD's the roofs may be the responsibility of the current homeowner.

If they do not co-operate contact an attorney and file a claim. Talk to your broker.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 30, 2009
Hi Eileen;
Have you yet contacted the previous owner to confirm the HOA's story? Have you spoken to the listing agent? If there was a dispute between the prior owner and the HOA, there should have been documentation to that effect, and a DISCLOSURE MADE TO YOUR CLIENT. I would immediately sit down with my manager and in-house counsel, or CAR Legal Hotline, and get some ideas. By all means assist your client with this. Be proactive! This is why we are so well compensated.
Good luck,
Deborah Bremner
REALTOR
Certified Short Sale Professional
Certified Home Retention Specialist
(D) 818.564.6591
TheBremnerGroup@gmail.com
Blogging at: http://TheBremnerGroup.com/blog
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 29, 2009
In my never to be humble opinion, it would be the HOA's responsibility. It was their responsibility to manage the property and ensure that no violations were made by the previous owners. The HOA should be properly funded in reserves to manage problems like that. I'd review the organizational documents to make sure, though. A legal opinion would also be helpful. I just got the HOA at my best friend's home to fix the roof and do mold remediation on damage in their kitchen. It took a little "push," but they did it. Good luck. B
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 29, 2009
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