Can your Homeowners’ Association (HOA) foreclose on your home if you’ve defaulted on assessment fees? Yes! In fact, per Florida law, your homeowners’ association can potentially foreclose your property even if you are current on your mortgage. If you’ve fallen behind on HOA fees, read on for some insights on what to expect.
Per Florida legislature (Chapter 720 of Florida Statutes), a homeowners association may suspend your member rights to common areas and amenities within the community and may even charge additional fees for each day assessments are in default. HOAs are generally tenacious about collection, no matter the amount or whether you are behind by one or more payments and with complete disregard to the status of your mortgage, so be proactive about getting caught up on missed payments; once the past due amount reaches over $1,000 your HOA has the authority to place a lien on your property. An assessment lien makes it difficult to sell or refinance your home and could result in a foreclosure whether or not you’re up-to-date on your mortgage.
Though the HOA is within rights to take foreclosure action it does not mean that you must immediately pack up your things and leave your home. The HOA is required to file suit and await the court to assign a foreclosure sale date through a summary judgment or regular trial. Also, your mortgage will remain in first position and the HOA cannot take possession of your home or get any money until the first position lien has been paid in full.
If you have an HOA lien on your property, call your HOA immediately. Many times homeowners can reach an agreement with the HOA board and avoid going into clunky court proceedings, which can be very expensive and taxing for both parties.
Stephen K. Hachey, a Florida real estate attorney, can help you navigate this process and make the most of a difficult situation. Contact him at 813-549-0096.
The opinions in this post are solely those of the author. The author takes full responsibility for the content. Like all blog posts, this is offered for general information purposes and does not constitute legal advice.