South Charlotte

HOA talk drew crowd to library

At least 80 people showed up Sept. 15 for a meeting to discuss pending homeowners association legislation and how to get more involved, according to organizers with a homeowners’ advocacy group.

The meeting, held from 6-8 p.m. at the Morrison Regional Library, was standing-room-only, said Ole Madsen, founder of Homeowners for Education, Advocacy and Rights, known as HEAR4nc.

“People really got into asking questions,” Madsen said. “They just wanted to participate. It was a very courteous and calm discussion, but they were very anxious to learn more.”

Al Ripley, director of the consumer and housing project at the N.C. Justice Center, was the main speaker. Madsen and N.C. Rep. Rodney Moore, D-District 99, also spoke about legislation affecting homeowners associations.

Madsen said two pieces of legislation HEAR4nc had been trying to help push through have expired because of the close of the state’s legislative session.

House Bill 883, for instance, would have required that new HOA board members receive four hours of training on HOA laws within 60 days of starting their position.

House Bill 871 would have required all property managers in North Carolina be licensed realtors and be put under the auspices of the N.C. Real Estate Commission.

House Bill 871 “will yield accountability,” said Ballantyne resident and activist Jane Jordan at the meeting.

Madsen said the two bills would have solved about “75 percent of the problems.”

Madsen said HEAR4nc now is working on drafting legislation that would fine homeowners association boards that don’t release their financial information upon request within 30 days. “Change isn’t going to happen by itself,” he said.

Madsen said HEAR4nc welcomed a couple dozen new members who signed up during the meeting.