Morse Code “Good Morning”

A few weeks ago I wrote about the pitiful communication skills many HOAs and management companies use when communicating with residents.  Who knew I would get a second example so soon?

Imagine your Saturday tranquility shattered by jackhammers ripping through concrete minutes after sunrise at 7 a.m. Turns out that a building with ground-floor commercial space chose Saturday morning to allow a renovation to begin after the space recently changed hands.

Needless to say, residents were unhappy and loudly voiced their unhappiness over the din of the demolition.

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Grapevines are an effective, but famously inaccurate. form of communication

We’ve all heard (and likely employed) the old saying, “Better to ask for forgiveness than permission.”  The inference is that while you were going to do something anyway, once it’s done, the resulting hassles are less than having to deal with the before-during-after trio of carping.  But that strategy doesn’t play well in multi-family dwellings that often operate as a Peyton Place of wagging tongues.

Of course the other issue here is that resident-representatives on HOA boards are generally untrained in the ways of communication. Management companies can be equally untrained. All seemingly unable to operate on even the most basic “what would I like” litmus test.

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Condo columnist Jon Anderson, like Bob Odenkirk of 'Better Call Saul,' is not a real lawyer. But he can read, so there's that.

Condo columnist Jon Anderson, like Bob Odenkirk of ‘Better Call Saul,’ is not a real lawyer. But he can read, so there’s that.

Let me caveat this by saying that, unlike a woman discussed in last week’s post,  I’m not a lawyer nor do I play one on TV. That said, I can read.

Texas condominium associations formed after January 1, 1994 are governed by the Texas Uniform Condominium Act (TUCA) which falls under Chapter 82 of the Texas Property Code. Originally proposed in 1980, TUCA was trapped in the state legislature for 13 years. It replaced the old Chapter 81 Texas Condominium Act (TCA) dating back to the legalization of condos in Texas in 1963.

TUCA is a more encompassing document than the old TCA. While associations prior to 1994 are not subject to TUCA (unless they vote to be), there are 14 TUCA provisions that all Texas UCA condos must also adhere to.

The reason it’s been TCA/TUCA and not UCA is “Texas.” There is a second-generation “model” Uniform Condominium Act dating back to 1980 written by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws. Texas couldn’t leave well enough alone and fiddled with an estimated one-third of the new statutes. Some good, some really bad.

Overall, TUCA is an encompassing (long) document covering all facets of the creation, operation and dissolution of condominium properties. The bad news for many condo dwellers is that their HOA board members have either never read it or willfully ignore key parts of it.

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