Anxious, angry, ‘always on edge’: Why HOAs’ relations with residents could be getting worse – N&O

By Korie Dean, Michael Gordon and Mary Helen Moore


Homeowners associations can foreclose on a home with ease when bills are 30 days overdue, and Chapel Hill attorney Jim White said with more and more HOAs being run by large commercial management companies, there’s less desire to be flexible. “Those communities that are managed by large national management companies tend to be more aggressive,” White said. “Collecting their money matters, I think, more than maintaining the integrity of the neighborhood.”


White said North Carolina’s laws tilt heavily in favor of HOAs, especially when it comes to foreclosures. “To me, I think the state foreclosure laws would make sense if what they said was that an HOA would have the right to place a lien on property. That’s powerful. But to force the property into a public foreclosure sale over hundreds or you know, a couple of thousand dollars is excessive,” White said.


When someone falls a month behind on dues, HOAs can do a non-judicial foreclosure, which can move startingly quickly. “I’ve just encountered enough situations where people simply didn’t know they were behind or were confused,” White said. “I’ve had multiple people, multiple clients who did not get notices in HOA foreclosures. I’ve rarely encountered that in a traditional mortgage foreclosure.”


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Jim White
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Jim White helps people and companies facing serious financial injury by bringing and defending lawsuits and representing debtors in bankruptcy. He has successfully taken on banks, large financial institutions and other corporations in “David v. Goliath” cases. You can reach him at 919-246-4676.