June 27, 2012


Homeowners associations are silly. While I know there are some civic-minded folks who want to do right by their neighbors, all too often homeowners associations seem to be stocked with busybodies who have too little power in their professional lives and desperately cling to opportunities to feel important. Which is why I find it more than a little strange that I'm considering a run for our neighborhood's homeowners board.

See, a couple weeks ago word spread through the neighborhood swim team committee that the homeowners board felt like their power was being circumvented and, as a result, threatened not to open the pool this year. With the possible exception of getting naked, slathering themselves with honey and taking tango lessons with grizzly bears, I can think of no dumber move they could make.

The pool is the epicenter of our neighborhood. After a cold winter, the neighborhood thaws out and meets at the pool. We all find neighbors we've missed, opportunities to reconnect, and chances for our kids to form new friendships. Every Saturday it's crawling with swimmers from all over the area, competing in swim meets. And unlike the deadly serious leagues that surround us, ours is one where any kid who can make it across the pool can compete, where coaches happily jump in with the kids, and where all parents cheer for every child.

It's nothing short of remarkable and is probably my favorite thing about the summer. To threaten that is a crime.

So that's why I'm trying to develop my platform now, well ahead of next April's elections. It's pretty simple so far:

- I'll always protect the pool.
- I don't really care what color your shutters are.
- Playgrounds will always be freshly mulched.
- I'll support the reproductive rights of any gay, married immigrant.

Posted by Chris at June 27, 2012 7:27 AM

I was VP of our HOA for 3 years. Don't do it.

Posted by: COD at June 27, 2012 9:00 AM

I grew up in Southwest Kansas, where there are no "homeowner's associations". In 2005, I moved to the northern suburbs of Chicago, where HOA's run rampant and hold homeowner's by the throat. All the homes look alike in the developments. People there have no clue how free they're not. I'm back home - where nobody tells anyone else what color they can paint their house (granted, sometimes that's a bit unfortunate) and no two homes look alike. I like it this way. HOA's are the work of Satan. I'm sure of it.

Posted by: Julee at June 27, 2012 12:46 PM

i'd vote for you! and shame on anyone who'd threaten to close that pool. it sounds perfect.

Posted by: kati at June 27, 2012 1:31 PM

that being said, i am pretty sure that having anything to do with the HOA sounds like the seventh level of hell.

Posted by: kati at June 27, 2012 1:32 PM

- confirm your stance on bakery vs. 7-11 cookies for meetings

- (water)gun ownership - yay or nay?

- will pool employee jobs be outsourced or offshored?

- height restriction on residential trees?

Actually, just don't tell them what your platform is before they vote for you, because if they knew, they wouldn't vote for you.


Posted by: Procrastamom at June 27, 2012 1:34 PM

Go get 'em.


Posted by: Mindy at June 27, 2012 7:22 PM

I've never understood HOA's and why anyone would want to live somewhere with one..I Pay my mortgage, I own my house and my land...unless the HOA is going to pony up some money every month to help with the mortgage, they should not get to tell me what color I can paint my house, what kind of trees I can plant, if I can leave my car in my driveway or not put my garbage cans away right away, or if I can put up a fence or pool....

Posted by: Lisa at June 28, 2012 8:07 AM

you have my vote...
and your platform is best ive seen ...
no im talking national level stuff there...

Posted by: suicide_blond at June 28, 2012 2:20 PM

Love the platform! After 10 years of living in Master-Planned Community hell, I'm happily in a neighborhood with no association and no one caring about the state of my lawn.

Posted by: Heather at June 29, 2012 1:45 PM