Home Owner Association (HOA) Issues & Problems

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Allen Lopez
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Baton Rouge, LA
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HOA is putting my property at risk

Allen Lopez
  • Rental Property Investor
  • Baton Rouge, LA
Posted Nov 30 2021, 13:21

Hey guys,

So behind my house is a very large tree that is rotten and might fall and destroy my house. This tree is located outside my property line on a bayou area.

I contacted the city of Baton Rouge, and they came and look at it and they informed me that it is located in the "common" area therefore the HOA should be the one removing that tree. They told me they can't do anything about it, and neither can I since it's not my property. My insurance is telling me that if the tree falls, it won't be covered by them since it's rotten and could be prevented.

The board needs to “think about it” and make a decision on it on removing it or leaving it based on cost.

Can the board decide not to cut it? What happens if they decide that and the tree fall destroying my house, or worse hurts/kills someone? I feel like this is a lawsuit or a disaster waiting to happen.

Anyone dealt with this before? Solutions? I feel like the HOAhas to pay for that. It’s a commons area. 

Thank you

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Bill Brandt#2 General Landlording & Rental Properties Contributor
  • Investor
  • Las Vegas, NV
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Bill Brandt#2 General Landlording & Rental Properties Contributor
  • Investor
  • Las Vegas, NV
Replied Nov 30 2021, 13:28

You probably need a new insurance company. If this was a neighbor’s tree you couldn’t make them cut it down. And then your insurance company tells you they wouldn’t cover it even though you had no control? Leave them now. 

If it does fall you’ll have to sue the Hoa and their insurance company will probably have to cover. Though they may end up suing your insurance company to make them cover it. 

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John Mocker#1 Property Insurance Questions & Discussions Contributor
  • Insurance Agent
  • Norwalk, CT
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John Mocker#1 Property Insurance Questions & Discussions Contributor
  • Insurance Agent
  • Norwalk, CT
Replied Dec 1 2021, 08:39

Allen,

Has a licensed arborist made the determination that it is rotted.  If so, send that report to the Condo president by registered mail.  Include a letter indicating that the City has determined it is on the Condo Association property.  If they do not remove it, they have set themselves up for a Liability claim.  Normally, it is hard to prove that they were informed by an expert that the tree needed to be removed and they ignored it so document everything.  Without the determination being made by an "Expert" it will be hard to prove liability.