Monday, June 27, 2011

Some area residents learning the hard way: Pay homeowner's association or else

Tom and Patrice Sherhag's foreclosure began with a missed quarterly HOA payment of $75 in October.
The assessment due to the Palmetto Pines Homeowners Association in unincorporated Boca Raton grew to $318 by the end of November, a charge that by then included a $25 late fee, a $35 "processing fee," 18 percent interest and $175 in attorneys' fees.
In January, the association filed a lien for the original $75 on the Sherhags' home and despite subsequent checks written for hundreds of dollars, snowballing court and attorneys costs have since upped the final bill to an estimated $4,605.
The actual debt owed the association: $80.25.
While homeowners associations are wielding foreclosures more often as a way to collect from delinquent owners, South Florida attorneys said it's still unusual for that kind of court action to be initiated on a minor debt.
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