New HOA rule: No kids playing outside!

A homeowners association in Edgewater, Fla., has created a new rule that “children will not be permitted to run, play tag, or act boisterously on the association property.”

It also states that there is no playing in common areas or parking lots including driveways and no playing in front of the rear of units.

If kids are found to be playing outside on common areas the parents will be fined $100.

From Fox 35 News in Orlando:

“…Rule number four starts by saying children will be under the direct control of adults at all times. “Children will not be allowed to run, play tag, or act boisterously on the association property”. It also states that there is no playing in common areas or parking lots including driveways and no playing in front of the rear of units. …”

“FOX 35 stopped by one of the HOA board members homes asked why they’re trying to stop kids from playing outside. All she would tell us. “It’s been blown out of proportion,” said one board member. Then she told us to leave the property. If the new rules are passed, the proposed fine for a child caught playing in the drive or in the common areas is $100. “They’re going to have to get that money out of me because that’s not going to happen. They can ticket me all they want. My kids are going to play,” said neighbor Shonna Mayer.”

“All homeowners will get their chance to vote on these new rules on April 27. Over 50 percent, which would be more than 25 homeowners would have to vote in favor for this to pass. They’ve contacted a lawyer who is researching the legalities of this and they plan on fighting this. ”

I could understand this rule if it were a retirement community where it was just older folks living there but it doesn’t sound like that. Also these people own their townhouses, they are not just renters. Renters could move out if they didn’t like the new HOA rule but in this economy you can’t just move willy nilly.  You also can’t pay $100 a day for your kids playing outside.

In one of our neighborhoods, the HOA was very strict about the appearance of property in the neighborhood. We got a notice one time that our numbers had faded on our mailbox and would have to be changed or we would be fined. Our poor neighbor had to build a structure to cover his garbage can because it wasn’t allowed to seen on the side of the house. Luckily we had a big bush that covered ours.

Kids were allowed to play in the neighborhood but they did try to limit the number of friends residents were allowed to invite in to play basketball. I can’t remember if they took down the goals or just let them fall to disrepair but the end result was no more basketball in the neighborhood.  However, the tennis courts looked great. Hmm…

So what would you do if your HOA came up with a similar rule about no playing? Do you think it could pass? What is the craziest rule in your HOA?
– Theresa Walsh Giarruso, Momania

118 comments Add your comment


April 6th, 2011
6:31 am

I would never live where there is a HOA, period.


April 6th, 2011
7:09 am

HOA’s are great until a few tyrants make it on the board. And ALWAYS watch out for selective enforcement of your covenants.

A Confederacy of Dunces

April 6th, 2011
7:11 am

The only reason I’m a part of my HOA board is to stop things like this from happening.


April 6th, 2011
7:22 am

I would never live in a Condo community that does not have an HOA. However, whether be it a tenant or an owner these type of factors “SHOULD” be taken into consideration (i.e. play area, pool) when looking for properties. It’s amazing that this topic would arise, because the community that I live in, we are facing the same issue.
No, I do not want to hear kids outside playing especially if I am trying to rest, and besides the parking lot “IS NOT” a play ground. This issue would be viewed totally different if the kids damaged someone’s car (Parents in most cases would not want to be responsible for repairs) and God forbid if they were even hit by a car. I would strongly advise individuals to find a community that would accomodate them for their individual needs. Therefore, I totally agree with that rule.

mom of 3

April 6th, 2011
7:22 am

HOA is why we live on 14 acres in n. ga. —– lived in serveral over the years and it’s an elite group of neighbors that nominate each other and tell you how to run your home. Some rules are great but others just plain stupid. Grass had to be cut so many inches — give me a break


April 6th, 2011
7:23 am

The tyranny of the majority. Which is why we don’t have a true democracy (thank goodness!)

Born with a tan.

April 6th, 2011
7:26 am

If I wanted to follow someone else’s rules, I would still live at home.
HOA need to be abolished.
You own your home and yet there is a group of people telling you what you can and can’t do on your property.


April 6th, 2011
7:26 am

I’ve been mulling over the idea of running for my HOA board for the past few days and this article just solidified my decision: I’M RUNNING! This is ludicrous! Perhaps HOA’s should be more concerned with notifying residents when there are burglaries on the property (as was my case) instead of trying to inhibit children from playing outside.


April 6th, 2011
7:35 am

If Laschea was my neighbor, I’d slash his/her tires.


April 6th, 2011
7:35 am

HOA’s are the reason I bought a farm in the middle of nowhere, I have my own rules.


April 6th, 2011
7:44 am

I am amazed at how many very conservative people I know; who don’t want the government interfering in their lives, choose to live where there is an HOA.


April 6th, 2011
7:45 am

I am pretty sure that would be against HOA rules


April 6th, 2011
8:01 am

Not everyone chooses to have children. The assumption that only the elderly would like a break from screaming children with no adult supervision is parental arrogance. Almost every other housing community on earth caters to families. Can’t a single one exist in which people who don’t have children aren’t held responsible for providing services to the children of those who would rather boot the kid out the door to be community’s problem rather than sit down and interact with their own children?

And if it is such a huge hardship, recall enough board members to get the rule revoked. Almost all HOAs have a way of undoing the actions of boards who go overboard. But that requires actual work which is no fun. Complaining on the internet and calling everyone names who doesn’t bend over backward to accommodate lazy parenting is so much easier. How many people even bothered to vote in the last HOA election?

An American Patriot

April 6th, 2011
8:05 am

Where we live, we have the “queen bee”. She’s been here since forever and runs the place along with enough of her biddies to always control the necessary votes to do whatever she deems necessary.


April 6th, 2011
8:10 am

HOA’s can be good but then they can be a nightmare. When you get certain individuals on an HOA committee that’s always been or wanted to be someone to throw authority around then you have problems. It can go to the extreme as what your reading in this article or to the relax stage of letting yards grow weeds to the extreme where they takeover yards and enter into neighbors yards that spend their hard earned $ and time trying to keep their yards nice. The more I get to know my neighbor the better I like my dog :-)


April 6th, 2011
8:12 am

yawn. Don’t like it, don’t live there.


April 6th, 2011
8:19 am

I have been the president of my HOA for several years. The other members on our Board and I are the only ones to step up and serve. One of our main jobs is to care for our amenities and make sure people maintain their properties. It is a thankless job with no pay, but we do it because we love our community and don’t want to see it deteriorate. We certainly don’t “tell people what they can and can’t do”, but we do enforce our covenants and let people know when their grass is knee high, or the shutters are falling off of their house. We don’t have any crazy rules, but we do have rules like cut your grass, maintain the appearance of your house and put your ugly trash can somewhere where people can’t see it. Theses are all basic things that I think any homeowner should do.

There is a great deal of apathy in our neighborhood and the idea the “someone else will do it.”. If it weren’t for the dedicated few, the pool would be green, the grass at our entrances would not get cut and crime would be a problem. If everyone would volunteer to do something for their HOA instead of gripe and complain, neighborhoods with HOA’s would be happier places to live. If you live in an HOA that is run by “tyrants”, then shame on you. Step up and be a part of the HOA Board.

Now, as for kids playing in the neighborhood, I have strong feelings about this. I don’t feel like it is the HOAs job to tell parents where their kids can play. HOWEVER…..parents need to be aware of what their children are doing. I don’t appreciate the children from down the street coming to play in my yard uninvited. I also don’t appreciate the children who are outside playing until 10:00 at night. Play in your own yard and go in when it gets dark. In my opinion, people are not teaching their children to respect other people’s property or just plain old respect for others.

Sorry for the long post……I just had to say my piece (or is it peace). : )


April 6th, 2011
8:23 am

That rule is totally outrageous. Reasons number 1-5 why I won’t move into an HOA neighborhood. I don’t want some neighborhood nazi telling me what I can and cannot do on my property.

My next home will be a rental. I will never own again, I’m done. My 5-7 year plan is to get to St. Simons and rent a small house, or a condo.

I for one LOVE the sounds of children playing.


April 6th, 2011
8:36 am

The HOA in my townhouse community is one of the reasons we moved there! If we’re going to be living in an upscale community, I want an upscale appearance. I don’t want to see bright orange plastic fisher price toys laying in the street or bicycles dumped all over the sidewalk. I also don’t want to hear kids screaming at the pool all night long. We also hire landscapers so that individual residents don’t have to be responsible for the lanscaping.

A shared community requires shared expenses and rules such as these to protect the buyers. If you don’t have these, it’s only a matter of time before people bolt satellite dishes to the side of their units (instead of the roof, per our HOA) clotheslines are running off the decks, and big plastic tupperware containers are left outside storing last year’s Christmas decorations. No one wants to buy into a community and then have that community start looking like a trailor park


April 6th, 2011
8:38 am

No one on this earth is going to tell me what my kids can and can’t do in my own back yard. This is HOA run wild!!! I can understand keeping kids out of common areas, but really, if these folks own their town home units, then they should be allowed to use the yard space in the front and rear how they choose.

My HOA is nuts too. I got a nasty letter one time because I had TWO newspapers in my driveway. I had spent the night in the hospital and didn’t pick up the paper the day before. The letter stated that I was “letting my property become a dumping ground”. REALLY!!!! It was TWO freaking papers!!! My neighbor got a letter stating he wasn’t allowed to have his boat trailer in his driveway. The stupid trailer was actually hitched to his truck because he was about to leave for the lake when he was cited!! Good grief, people. I get it if it was just sitting there, but it was hitched!! Stupid HOA!


April 6th, 2011
8:52 am

Jason, it sounds as if you might not have any kids by the tone of your post. Kids need to get outside to play and run around. Trust me, I spend plenty of time with my daughter, but they need to play with other kids since I can only play so many games for so long.

So, since kids aren’t fat enough let’s all make a rule that they can’t play outside or many any noises ever again. What is wrong with people these days? When we were kids we played ball in the street, rode our bikes all around town and often were in large groups. Thank goodness I am not a kid today as it just seems so sad. I never have to stop the car to let kids pause a softball or football game so I can pass. I asked an 11 year old girl if she knew how to jump double dutch rope, she had no idea what I was talking about. Just a sad state of affairs we have gotten ourselves into.


April 6th, 2011
8:53 am

We typically appreciate the HOA…it has helped our property value.

We enjoy: no cars being taken apart and worked on in front yards, no pepto bismol pink painted houses, no dogs chained to a fence and howling at all hours, no lawns that are 12 inches deep.

But sometimes things are not what I agree with:

We have to pay $25 to “rent” the club house and a $100 deposit to make sure we leave it clean.

That is FINE with me and I have done it nearly 2 dozen times. The girl scouts and boy scouts get to use it for FREE each week. I personally think a neighborhood project once a year, in our neighborhood, would not be asking too much. What frosts me is that I have paid $25 to rent the clubhouse for a venue with my friends, who all live in the neighborhood and pay their dues. This is because it is a private venue and the entire neighborhood is not invited. We ALL live in the said neighborhood. We do not want to invite THE ENTIRE NEIGHBORHOOD.

Regarding the playing…that is extreme but many kids today do not know how to respect other’s property…quiz…who should teach them this rule…oh yeah their teachers…LOL.
I am still finding debris in our yard from our neighbor’s super bowl party…they had a house full and the kids ran all over our yard too. Parents just turned them loose, just like they do at many hotels and then the front desk has to step in…WHAT?

Perhaps the parent/kids need a course in manners and then the neighborhood can cancel the rule.


April 6th, 2011
8:56 am

ooops..the HOA ruling is $25 for a private venue and FREE for a any open neighborhood venue.

on the board

April 6th, 2011
9:01 am

I joined my HOA to prevent this type of nonsense also, but it irritates me that others in the community won’t step up to help the HOA. However, these same folks will complain if their neighbor is in violation of a rule. Most people do the right thing and take care of their yards. Also most people in my community look out for each other. If there were two papers in the driveway and the neighbor usually picks up their paper every day, someone would probably stop by to make sure everything was ok there, not write them up. However, the rules are usually for the 20% of folks who don’t treat their weeds, rarely cut their yards and have a lower standard of general maintenance for thier home. If you don’t like what’s going on, GO TO THE MEETINGS.

Many of our board members are so tired of petty complaints and no involvement, that they are ready to quit. When no one volunteers to take their place, the board will have to turn it over to a managment company and the annual dues will surely skyrocket.


April 6th, 2011
9:01 am

MJG – I live in a nice nieghborhood. The City of Sugar Hill has a Code Enforcement division and they drive around the city constantly. Not a day goes by I don’t see them driving around. They will actually get out of the truck, and measure someone’s lawn. If it’s over 6 inches, they write you a warning, and give you 10 days to cure.

There are no abandonded vehicles, or any up on blocks getting repaired. There are very few cars parked in the streets. We all maintain our yards, and help each other with their yards. Just last night I came home, and the next door neighbors were fixing up their yard, so I strolled over, grabbed a rake and helped out. This is what we do in our hood. There are kids all up and down the street. It’s a wonderful neighborhood, full of neighbors who care and watch out for each other. We are always outside, and always laughing and talking with the ‘neibs…..

Just because you DON’T live in an HOV s/d doesn’t mean it’s gone to hell…..I love my ‘hood and my neighbors. I’ve thought about moving, downsizing since my daughter is moving out in August to her first apartment, but the thought of leaving these people, and the comfortable home I can afford, just makes me want to stay where I am….for at least 5 years.

In both neighborhoods I have owned a home in, there was not an HOA, and they were nice neighborhoods.


April 6th, 2011
9:05 am

i have never understood why anyone would live where there is an HOA..why would you pay good money for a house that YOU own-only to have someone tell you how you can live? unfathomable to me. maybe if you are elderly and there is upkeep included in the fees you pay, still then i would rather just live in an apartment. i truly cant imagine someone telling me my kids cant play outside. i cant even believe this would be passed as a new rule. if the kids are playing where there are cars and its dangerous…just make no playing in cars or other people’s yards the rule….there are enough rules for me just in everyday life, at work, with kids etc…i would never live in a place that told me how to run my life-no way.

as far as the ‘dont like it dont live there’ posts-this obviously wasnt a rule when these people moved in. it is nice when your neighborhood looks nice-it is always bad when there is one neighbor whose home and yard looks like a dump-but i still wouldnt want to own a home where i was told how i had to act. got enough of that when i was growing up.

Roberta Higginbotham

April 6th, 2011
9:14 am

Yawn, again.

I’ve put a lot of thought into this, and I think I’ve come up with a pretty good idea. Now follow me here – this may be complicated for some of you. For people who are contemplating moving into a community that has an HOA, or POA for that matter, read very carefully all of the rules. If you don’t like some of them, don’t live there.


April 6th, 2011
9:20 am

HOAs are usually for places with shared expenses such as community facilities (pool, tennis, whatever), or when multiple units touch such as townhomes or condos and items such as the roof can’t really be replaced by 1 unit at a time. My townhome community also has a lot of greenspace, trails/paths etc that need to be maintained, so HOA fees pay the landscaping as well.

So why do we live there, even though we have to pay HOA? The neighborhood is beautiful, we have a very good location, and my wife and I are both busy with work that we don’t currently want to deal with cleaning our own pool or mowing our own grass and trimming our own shrubbery. Also, a new home of similar size in the same area that doesn’t have an HOA would run us 2-3x as much

Tonya C.

April 6th, 2011
9:21 am

I came from FL, the HOA capital it seems. I despise HOAs, and everything they represent. We made a conscious decision not to move into one. If you have kids…don’t do it. if you have dogs…don’t do it. If you like the freedom to do what you darn well please….don’t do it. Eventually, they all piss you off, even the so-called ‘good’ ones.

If you have no kids and don’t like them, move to an adult community and be done with it. the same people who passed this rule will be the ones talking out the sides of their mouth about all the ‘fat kids’ they see.


April 6th, 2011
9:26 am

Never have lived in one, never would want to! However, I see a point about having kids put outside to string the streets all night and day. I have seen apartment complexes where the kids are set out at 8 am and not allowed back in for hours. These kids, without supervision, can get into a lot of trouble.

I live way out in the country. I have a few neighbors in sight. One of them I call the Loud Family because the kids play outside LOUDLY, till late, and the dogs bark a lot. Another family goes back and forth, back and forth on their ATVs at all hours. My closest neighbor keeps the outside of his house like a dump. Code enforcement has come by, but nothing has happened. These are annoyances I am willing to put up with, however, for the joy of the absolute stillness (no ambient noise) very early in the morning, or when it snows, for the deer that step through my yard into the pasture each evening, for the neighbors who stop to talk when I am working in my garden, for the knowledge that I could ask for help from any one of them (and have) and they would come. Just in the last three months that has included coming in the freezing cold to shoot a maurading possem, and coming to hand dig a grave for the dog. So, with the good and bad, I am mostly happy with my “neighborhood.”


April 6th, 2011
9:30 am

I live in a Town Home subdivision with an HOA and it works for me. My neighbors look out for each other and are very friendly. There aren’t a whole lot of kids in the neighborhood probably because it is a town home community and they tend to be geared towards singles. It really doesn’t bother me one way or another all of my neighbors know my son and he walks their dogs for them and we watch out for each other with the exception of a few. My mom and dad have a home in a HOA community and it was fine until they changed the board members and the new members where upset that my parents used the property as a rental property.


April 6th, 2011
9:34 am

Gee….problems with overweight children…HOA doesn’t want them playing outside…one poster even went so far as to assume that sending a child out to play was bad parenting? WTH????? When I was a kid my parents didn’t entertain me 24/7…they didn’t prop me in front of the tv…they sent me and my sister OUTSIDE to play…where we had an untold amount of adventures. Heck, I had ALL my kids (got a couple extra for spring break) OUTSIDE yesterday! And after they get done cleaning up the mess they made yesterday…they are going back outside today. I LOVE to hear them yell and laugh and even argue over who does what. Of course, I don’t live in an HOA community and yeah, couple yards in the neighborhood don’t look great. But I just don’t let myself get upset at other people’s choices. If I were trying to sell and I thought it was affecting my home values I’d ask the neighbor to clean up the yard..and if they couldn’t for some reason(we in a poor income neighborhood)..I’d offer to help. Just how I am.


April 6th, 2011
9:48 am

Oh for pity’s sake, whatever happened to common sense? I am pro-HOA, but in moderation. Everyone likes to protect their biggest investment, and a well-maintained neighborhood is a wonderful thing. But there is a limit to good sense, and these people have crossed it. Should kids be allowed to roam freely at all hours, no, of course not. But should they be allowed outside to run around and screen during the day? Absolutely. Just take others into consideration – for example, it’s good manners not to mow your yard at 7:30 a.m., right? Hopefully some HOA doesn’t have a rule against that.


April 6th, 2011
9:51 am

A funny, semi-related story… At our old house, some 11ish boys were ringing doorbells and running. All of our neighbors were retired and older, so I knew some of them would be confused or concerned, not getting what was going on. So I walked outside as they were hiding in our yard and called them over. Asked them why they were doing it…’Duh, don’t know.’ I told them to find something constructive to do – go to the pool, build a fort, play tag or capture the flag, anything…or I’d find them something to do. They were exceeding polite and promptly found something else to do – ride bikes.


April 6th, 2011
9:57 am

@ JJ…I know there are neighborhoods that are fine without an association. But we lived in one, previously, that was not fine. One house WAS pink, cars were everywhere and yards looked like jungles. We opted for the HOA. Not all communites patrol their neighborhoods and then things can get out of control.

My husband carpools with someone to work….they live in Gwinnett too. He and his wife have been to our house. He commented, to my husband, ” your neighborhood looks SO much better than ours, we have all sorts of stuff everywhere.” We are not uppity but we do like to keep our yard fairly nice. When we lived in Texas, we did not live in an HOA neighborhood. The neighbors took pride in their yards and it was perhaps similar to where you live now. My husband once mowed 3 yards in one day…ours and two neighbors. We simply looked out for each other.

He did fix the mailbox of our neighbors a few weeks ago and that husband came over to help our duaghter when we had water coming in the basement and we were out of town. I LOVE GOOD NEIGHBORS!

I also love our pool, clubhouse and picnic pavilion with electricity, ceiling fans, tables and grills. We have hosted several venues there and it is wonderful.

I lived out on the farm when my parents had 400 acres. I am not a country girl. I love to visit the country but probably will not live there. I have loved getting to know my neighbors. We took our former neighbors ( not the pink house but in that neighborhood) out to Brookwood Grille for dinner. They now live in Roswell and are retired, It was a lovely visit and we hope to do it again! A joy to establish relationships with different folks!


April 6th, 2011
10:01 am

I refuse to live in a neighborhood with a HOA. My property= my rules! Children not being allowed to play outside is ridiculous.


April 6th, 2011
10:02 am

JOD…manners? Is it good manners to book four 12-13 year old boys at one end of the hall, in a hotel, and then you sleep on the other end…away from their tricks? I was in the room next door.
I awoke at 2:00 a.m. to slamming on the wall. I looked out in the hall…there was trash strewn all over the place…a real mess. I called the front desk. She came up and in my room to listen, then knocked on their door, WHERE ARE YOUR PARENTS? They finally fessed up when she mentioned calling the police. “Our parents said they wanted to sleep, so they are all in the room at the other end of the hall and to leave them alone” REALLY?


April 6th, 2011
10:28 am

@MJG – I would think it’s illegal – or certainly against hotel policy – to have minors staying in a room with no adult. But I digress back to our prior topic about parents breaking the rules…no accountability, then it ‘didn’t happen.’

*sigh* I know, I think I’m championing a lost cause.


April 6th, 2011
10:29 am

37 comments so far, and no one has made the obviously funny comment on: “Our poor neighbor had to build a structure to cover his garbage can because it wasn’t allowed to seen on the side of the house. Luckily we had a big bush that covered ours.”


April 6th, 2011
10:33 am

I was on the board of a condo complex for a few years, even chairman for a while. It was interesting to say the least. With a board, or an HOA, you expect certain rules – they are handed to you when you purchase a unit. or ask for them ahead of time. I don’t see a problem with that. You know what you’re getting in to.

What I have a problem with, and struggled with while I was on the board, was the ‘reactionary’ bylaws that were made up.

For example: the unit next to mine was owned by a nice guy, who happened to own a concrete company. He bought a brand new work truck. Not a pickup, but a truck used for onsite repairs for all his trucks. This thing was beautiful. He, figuring he was the owner, wanted to check it out at home so he drove it and parked it overnight in his driveway.

The other members of the board (I was chairman at the time) convened an emergency session and proceeded to enact a bylaw that NO vehicles with commercial license plates could park on the property overnight. I suggested that we don’t do that, but have commercial tagged vehicles park in the visitor parking areas on either end of the property – not in folks driveways. Seemed reasonable to me. Nope, no way. I then gave an example that what happened if I became a traveling salesman (and I said it that way) and I was given a car with commercial plates? Do I turn down the car or the job? Sorry, can’t take the car because my condo complex just enacted a rule after I’ve lived there for 8 years that says I can’t park commercial vehicles there.

I was told that I couldn’t think of just myself when I was on the board. Huh? Reactionary and emotional. Not the way to run anything. Think about it logically. Does it make sense? Should it be put before the owners?

We then had to approach the two other folks that had commercially tagged vehicles and tell them they needed to get those vehicles off the property or tag them with passenger plates.

I thought it was dumb then, and I think it is dumb today.

I’m okay with certain rules, but if you’re going to change the rules in the middle of the game, well, that just doesn’t sit well.


April 6th, 2011
10:40 am

I have a house in Gwinnett where my Mother now lives.

One of the members of the HOA board have a beagle which they tie outside. The poor dog just wants attention and sees the kids playing and barks/howls for hours. But because they are the HOA board, you can’t say anything to them our they will start nit-picking your property.

A few yars ago we were having it painted. She submitted the paint color (a soft blue)to the HOA and it was approved. In the evening the day it was painted, one of the neighbors (who is on the HOA board) came over and said it was too bright, and asked that she repaint it another color. Nope!! she got the approval prior to painting.

A few years earlier a house across the stree was painted w/out the HOA approval. It was painted a bright yellow, maybe a little too bright, but it would have mellowed quickly. Since the owners did not have the approval of the HOA they had to repaint it.

There are houses that are gaudy, there are two pink houses, one house has lime green shutters on a dull green house. One has a stucco hosue with a dark red brick stairs.

There are good reason to have a HOA, but as many have mentioned when the HOA picks & chooses what rules it will follow, that it when it becomes a issue.


April 6th, 2011
10:41 am

@ JOD…it is against some hotel’s policies to bring in pets…yet this is still done. There is also a limit on the number of occupants in a room ( fire code etc.) …some pack folks in with a sleeping bag. I hear all of this from the front desk personnel. Some folks adhere to:
RULES ARE MEANT TO BE BROKEN. The last hotel I stayed at posted:

NO BIRTHDAY PARTIES….gee…wonder why…maybe the HOA will be next with this one :)

DB…just met a man in the lobby from Belgium. I mentioned Brussels Sprouts and thought of you…hugs and I will catch up in a few weeks!

JJ..any luck with a job for your daughter? I have been out of state and not local, so not much help…sorry!

Mrs. G

April 6th, 2011
10:59 am

I get the impression that this rule isn’t about crotchety people not wanting to see and hear kids. I think that it’s probably a liability issue. They say that kids aren’t allowed to play in common areas; they probably don’t want to get sued. Sure, as a HOA, they probably do have GL insurance, but if they get sued, the cost of their insurance is going to go up (maybe that already happened?).

That said, I wouldn’t want to live anywhere where my kids couldn’t play outside freely. I spent my childhood running around the subdivision – we made forts in the trees in the median near where the neighborhood’s sign was and, in the wintertime, sledded down the sloped grassy median that divided the road (wow, kids sledding down a hill and into a road…LOL) – and I want my kids to be able to do the same.


April 6th, 2011
11:01 am

@ Kat…might be funny but it is true. We park ours behind a bush too!

Something else…when our neighbors toured the neighborhood with a real estate agent ( 10 years ago) , they were told, “it is lovely at Christmas…everyone uses tasteful white lights…” NOT…my husband puts the Snoopy Countdown House up on Halloween…I hate it but he and my daughter get a kick out of it.
Others laugh that he is the first one to put up a Christmas decoration. Many neighbors have all sorts of silly things for the holidays…maybe that one will be on the no no list next.


April 6th, 2011
11:13 am

I have mixed emotions on the HOA issue. I live in a neighborhood that has HOA rules, but it seems the most obvious ones, barking dogs, awful lawns, trailers in driveway, are those that are allowed to take place, but there is no hesitation to send a note about a mailbox that needs repainting. I walk my dog in the neighborhood, and there are homes that have weeds a foot high – there is no way the HOA can possibly NOT notice this, but it goes on and on. Same with barking dogs. I own a small business and work from home. There are people who work the traditional 9-5 and I hear their dogs bark all the long in their yard, from about 7 to 6, when they are away. It drives me crazy and I have called the cops more than once. People think it is ok to leave a dog outside, or inside but with access to the oustside, and they seem shocked to hear that the dog(s) bark endlessly. That is my worst pet peeves. No small kids here, but am fine with the kids in the area. The teens can be unruly by the pool but as long as I don’t suffer the consequences, I don’t realy care. But the dogs amd the lawns, those are the worst. I have a dog as well, and would never leave him out for hours on end.

So many people in my neighborhood got puppies from a local puppy mill, and now we have an abundance of small yappy dogs that are no longer cared for, and the kids have long lost interest. Most are not walked, and that is an issue as well, as they just bark for attention, oblivious to their owners. Sorry for the rant, but I am sitting here typing and all I hear are dogs outside :(. There are only so many times you can call the cops. I also know some of the HOA people have dogs they leave out all day as well, so that doesn’t help.


April 6th, 2011
11:22 am

SRH….I am with you on the dogs. I have always told my neighbors, “If you hear our dog barking outside, please go and check….something is wrong. We will never leave our dog outside all day alone.” I also cannot stand loud music, on the back deck after 10:00. HELLO? Some neighbors would like to go to bed…take your party inside…or move it to the clubhouse and/or picnic pavilion.
I would never buy a house close to the pool, for that reason.


April 6th, 2011
11:23 am

Calling the cops for a barking dog, takes away from other serious matters that need police attention. Call Animal control instead……

Stop wasting their time with a barking dog. Try talking to the owner and express your concerns. Then if that doesn’t solve the problem then call Animal control.


April 6th, 2011
11:32 am

JJ = I have talked to the neighbors. so many times, and very nicely at first. The problem goes away for a few days and then starts right back up. i live in the sticks in Canton, but in a decent sub-division. When I called animal control, they said call the cops. This goes one all day long, every day. Not sure if you work, but imagine if you were at your desk, and you heard this ALL DAY LONG. I can’t open a window for fresh air, sit on my desk uninterrupted, and even a walk with my dog starts a chain reaction of barking. I have left notes, called (as late as 11:00 PM, since one of the neighbors works nights), and went up to them when I see them. There is a mentatlity among a LOT of dog owners that think an invisible fence, or a real fence, is fine for a dog all day. For some reason my neighborhood has gotten so bad in this area, and is getting worse. It is especially bad when every other house does this.

Some people don’t get the concept that if they are not home, their dogs will bark all the time. There is nothing else for them to do. Take care of them, or don’t get them. That should be simple enough.

And MDJ: yes, the patio parties can be bad as well, and of course they are often the same people :)


April 6th, 2011
11:33 am

Fair housing laws prohibit discrimination for sale/rental of housing on the basis of familial status. I wonder if this new rule will be challenged by the locality’s Fair Housing office. Even though it’s not outright saying “no kids allowed,” (which is permitted in certain situations), it could possibly be construed that way because it’s attempting to control the actions of children.
I think the HOA is going to have to remove this rule. I wonder how their attorney is justifying it. It doesn’t pass the smell test to me. You can’t restrict access to property if someone owns that property. I am sure that there is more to this than I know, but it just doesn’t seem right to me.


April 6th, 2011
11:34 am

@LM – Depending on where you are, there is likely an ordinance on chaining animals outside. I would call the closest humane society or the police (non-emergency line – usually code enforcement) and ask what should be done. People who chain out dogs should not be allowed to have them. This dog might be eligible for removal, rescue to an organization, and hopeful adoption by a loving family. Maybe HOAs should create rules banning idiot pet owners? ;o)