Updated: 6/2/23

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.

HOA Foreclosure Rights in Florida

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.

Consequences of Defaulting on HOA Fees

When a homeowner falls behind on their HOA fees, the consequences can be significant. The HOA may suspend the homeowner’s rights to use common areas and amenities within the community. Moreover, for each day that assessments are in default, the HOA may charge additional fees. It’s worth noting that HOAs are generally diligent about collection, regardless of the amount owed or the number of missed payments.

The Lien and Foreclosure Process

If the past due amount exceeds $1,000, the HOA has the authority to place a lien on the property. An assessment lien can make it difficult to sell or refinance your home. Furthermore, it could lead to foreclosure, irrespective of whether your mortgage is up-to-date.

However, the foreclosure process is not immediate. The HOA is required to file a lawsuit and must wait for the court to assign a foreclosure sale date, either through a summary judgment or a regular trial.

The Position of Your Mortgage

It’s important to understand that even if the HOA initiates foreclosure proceedings, your mortgage remains in the first position. This means that the HOA cannot take possession of your home or receive any money until the first position lien, i.e., your mortgage, has been paid in full.

Seeking Resolution

If you find yourself facing an HOA lien on your property, it’s crucial to act promptly. Contact your HOA immediately. In many cases, homeowners can negotiate an agreement with the HOA board, thereby avoiding the need for costly and time-consuming court proceedings.

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.


Stephen K. Hachey P.A. Stephen K. Hachey P.A.
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