Rules should be designed to improve the community, not repress individual freedom.
Rules should be designed to improve the community, not repress individual freedom.
Professional, independent, and quality property inspections of common and limited elements cost much less than having to perform emergency repairs and then permanent repairs along with replacement of damaged homeowner property and community property.
As time goes on, a lack of proactive, preventive maintenance will lead to an increasing number of reactive repairs. Being proactive in fixing small issues can save a lot of money. Reactive maintenance results in future costly repairs and replacements.
Why be reactive when proactive maintenance not only saves the HOA money, it can pay for itself in many cases?
The board has had two years to develop a maintenance plan. Yet they have taken no action to encourage a proactive, preventive maintenance plan. We still do not have one.
Even when a homeowner reached out to the board and asked if we had one - the board chose to ignore the homeowner and did not reply.
We have been way overdue for proper inspections and proactive, preventive maintenance. All we have been doing is reactive maintenance for at least two years.
"Please provide me with a copy of the community's current maintenance plan. Not the new "matrix", but the current, comprehensive property maintenance plan that has been executed since January 2017.
If it is available in electronic form you can send it to this email address. Or, if there is a website where the plan is located, please provide the URL.
Please send me a copy of the existing Property Maintenance Plan no later than Tuesday, September 25, 2018.
Identify problem areas before they get worse: If deterioration of common elements is detected early, it could save the HOA money if repairs are made before the damage becomes even more costly.
Different seasons bring different property risks. Season-specific inspections—such as checking chlorine levels in an outdoor pool during summer, leaf buildup in eaves and gutters in the fall and sidewalks for ice in winter—should be done along with regular inspections.
JULY 2, 2019 - they haven't taken any productive action...they're still busy "strategizing" and "planning."
WE'VE BEEN ASKING FOR INSPECTIONS AND PROACTIVE, PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE FOR OVER TWO YEARS!
The board announced (3/28/2019) they formed an "Asset Management Project Team." Not an original idea or timely decision. There has been a lack of action for over TWO YEARS and it is costing homeowners thousands of dollars.
We are long overdue for proper inspections and a proactive, preventive maintenance plan. Reactive maintenance isn't working.
7/8/2019 WE'RE STILL WAITING TO HEAR FROM THE BOARD ABOUT OUR OFFER TO HELP.
4/2/2019 WE VOLUNTEER TO WORK WITH THE BOARD AND HELP THEM IMPLEMENT MORE OF OUR IDEAS AND SUGGESTIONS! NO RESPONSE YET.
5/28/2019 Board Response: "The Board is aware of Declaration, Article 3.3, Section (e), page 6 which allows for inspection of all Common Elements and Limited Common Elements on a regular basis as reasonably necessary as well as all unit owners receiving reasonably detailed written reports following such inspections. The Board’s fiduciary duty to maintain roofs and siding of units requires a data informed and effective combination of both preventative and restorative maintenance activities and inspections to inform of maintenance efforts. As the community’s units age, we are aware of the need to inspect units in order to determine the requirements for both preventative and restorative maintenance. The Board has appointed an Asset Management Project Team who currently is working to develop a strategy and process for inspection of the areas of individual units for which the HOA has maintenance responsibilities. Once this strategy and process is finalized and approved by the Board, an implementation plan which will include the time frame, the companies and/or individuals performing the services and the costs of the inspection services will be shared with all residents."
WE NEED FEWER PROMISES AND MORE ACTION.
Our response to the Board:
SO, YOU IGNORE THE DECLARATION AND AFTER TWO YEARS OF NEGLECT YOU NEED TO "DEVELOP A STRATEGY" TO CONDUCT INSPECTIONS?
JUST GET ON WITH IT, GET THE JOB DONE AND STOP WITH ALL THE BUREAUCRATIC BUSYWORK, EQUIVOCATING, AND ONE-WAY B.S. MESSAGES!
"There is no reference to when the project mgmt team is to give them any information. Therefore they could take another two years before doing anything. What a waste! How about some action not just appointing another team to do something. This place is getting worse not better."
(Resident name and address withheld by request.)
"They might as well have said, "We don't know sh*t about what's going on." (Resident name and address withheld by request.)
"These incompetent gas bags are eventually going to drown in their nonsensical verbiage. It is obvious that they have no clue how to run this place and that they are terrified of the people who do." (Resident--Patriot Lane)
The Maintenance Matrix is NOT a governing document. It is an attempt by the Board to “dump off” maintenance activities the Board does not want to deal with or, due to poor planning, failed to budget for appropriately.
It is improper for the Board to expect homeowners to take over its obligations and force homeowners to spend money on inspections and maintenance.
The "Maintenance Matrix" does not serve the best interest of our residents.
It is a document created by a small group of Board-selected cronies who decided to burden homeowners with responsibilities our governing documents assign to the Board. The Board is trying to force residents to accept additional maintenance expense, responsibility, and risk.
Originally called the Responsibility Checklist, a homeowner request to review the "checklist" during its development was denied. Homeowners were not asked or permitted to discuss, comment, or provide information in the development of the "matrix."
The so-called support documents for the matrix omit crucial and relevant information from the Reserve Study, Declaration, Rules & Regulations, Financial Committee meeting minutes, and TOA sales documentation.
THE BOARD SAYS THE REMOVAL OF ICE (AND ICE DAMS) FROM UNIT GUTTERS WILL BE THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE HOMEOWNER.
The homeowner is also responsible for cleaning their unit's gutters. Additional exterior maintenance denied and dumped onto the homeowner.
"The Great Room, Kitchen and Dinette areas of the Clubhouse will be closed and unavailable for use Monday, May 7 through Friday, May 18. During this time, the Great Room flooring will be removed and replaced." (Source: HOA Website)
"Great Room Repairs – The entire floor will need to be replaced...The back part of roof has been repaired and (is) no longer leaking, however now the front roof seems to be leaking and in need of repair." (Source: Sewickley Ridge Clubhouse & Pool Committee Meeting Minutes, April 5, 2018)
Residents and Central Blood Bank representatives witness the ceiling leaking. The Central Blood Bank's equipment had to be moved to prevent damage to the computers.
(Source: March 2, 2018 SR Blood Drive)
"...the ice dam that developed on the clubhouse roof resulting in interior leaking and damage to the Great Room and the steps being taken to have the roof as well as the Great Room repaired." (Source: February 10, 2018 Special Meeting of the Executive Board of Directors)
"As a result of what we believe to be an ice jam/dam in the gutters of the clubhouse, a leak has developed in the wall and ceiling of the clubhouse Great Room." (Source: email from noreply@sewickleyridgehoa, Thursday, 1/18/2018)
Roof leak at corner back of the clubhouse. (Source: Property Management "Report", September, 2017)
Please take a moment and read this document to understand why you do not have to risk injury or expense to have your home's gutters maintained and repaired.
October 24, 2018
The Maintenance Matrix is incorrect. The Board is obligated by law* to provide maintenance to all common elements. That duty cannot be delegated to individual owners. It is improper for the Board to expect homeowners to take over its obligations and force homeowners to spend money on inspections and maintenance (in addition to the regular, monthly assessment already being paid.)
* PA Uniform Planned Community Act; § 5307. Upkeep of planned community.
Following is the response from the management company to a homeowner's request for siding maintenance to treat artillery fungus.
Aug 5, 2019, at 1:17 PM
Management company representative response:
"I [the management company rep] contacted the vendor and he said the black dots are a fungus and there is no way to remove them from vinyl siding.
"We have these small black spots that look like specks of tar, all over the vinyl siding of our house. It's on the porch, my windows, but it is worse on the siding. It goes all the way up to my second-story windows, and is even under my soffit and on my gutters."
It is common on the sides of automobiles when cars are parked near mulched areas that are infested with the artillery fungus.
Click on the button below for information: "Solutions for Artillery Fungus." https://extension.psu.edu/solutions-to-artillery-fungus
January 4, 2019 Grounds & Safety Minutes:
"7. Artillery Spores
The issue with these spores in the mulch areas around homes is being reviewed by the Board. They can release spores a significant distance from the ground, causing small dark hard spots to be attached to siding and windows, and possibly leaving a stain behind when removed."
January 12, 2019 Special Meeting of the Board:
A homeowner asked about the artillery fungus problem. The Board President indicated the Board was "aware" of the problem and was reviewing it.
August 2019: EIGHT (8) MONTHS SHOULD BE ENOUGH TIME TO REVIEW THE ISSUE AND DEVELOP SOME SOLUTIONS AND/OR OPTIONS.
$104,992.91 for the last two years of mulch (and artillery fungus).
The growth of artillery fungus and it's damage to siding and cars continues....
Check out the Message Board - General - Miscellaneous - "Small black spots on siding" topic on the HOA website to see a discussion by homeowners regarding their frustrations dealing with artillery fungus and the Board's lack of action.
TO: Sewickley Ridge HOA Executive Board of Directors
July 29, 2019
As part of the purchase agreement for all units within the Sewickley Ridge community, purchasers are provided with information relative to the governing Community Documents and agree to abide by the provisions of these documents. The Executive Board of Directors are homeowners elected by homeowners to represent the Association. Transfer from Declarant control to the homeowner-controlled HOA Board occurred January 2017.
Article III Units; Boundaries; Homes; Certain Maintenance Responsibilities of the Declaration requires that the Association, after transfer of Declarant control to the Association shall, through a qualified independent contractor, inspect all Common Elements and Limited Common Elements on a regular basis as reasonably necessary, for the purpose of determining the condition of the Common Elements and Limited Common Elements and need for Maintenance work. Reasonably detailed written reports of such inspections shall be prepared by the independent contractor and submitted to the Association, and copies shall be made available to all Unit Owners.
The Board has failed to follow the required procedures. Furthermore, the Board has acknowledged their awareness of the Article III contents. Yet the inspection, maintenance and reporting requirements continue to be ignored. The Board’s ongoing lack of compliance results in the neglect of both Common Elements and Limited Common Elements.
The Board has ignored its responsibilities under Article III for 2.5 years. As a consequence of their failure to adhere to the requirements of the governing Community Documents, the Board should be assessed a fine of five hundred dollars ($500.00). Said fine is payable to the Sewickley Ridge HOA.
Failure to comply with Article III may result in the imposition of additional fines and legal action under the processes outlined in the Community Documents.
DECEMBER 2019: Retention pond still not repaired.
April, 2019: Retention pond stops functioning.
June 2019: Vendor contract indicates a "documented 8' X 8' sinkhole."*
HOA paid $4,850.
September 13, 2019: Grounds & Safety Committee meeting minutes--
"The crack in the small pond ended up being 20 feet long ... it appears that the crack may be extended beyond what was capped, so the pond is still leaking water."
November 9, 2019: When asked about the retention pond at the Budget meeting the Board announced it will be waiting until, at least, January 2020 to "look at the problem with the new management company."***
Really? The retention pond hasn't been functioning for NINE MONTHS! It is an important component of our storm water management system and the HOA's responsibility.
If this problem cannot be resolved, the cost to completely rebuild the pond could cost $30,000 - $50,000.**
*Source: Vendor contract, June, 2019: "Excavation of 8' X 8' documented sinkhole."
**Source: October 10, 2019 Board Meeting, Treasurer's Report
***November 9, 2018 Budget Meeting
We have been asking for the development of a maintenance plan for three (3) years. Not conducting regular inspections of common and limited elements, including roofs and siding, is a violation of the Declaration.* The HOA is responsible for [preventive] maintenance of roofs and siding.**
*Source: Declaration - Article 3.3 (e), page 6
**Source: Declaration - Article 3.3 (c), page 6
**Source: Declaration - Definitions, page 4
STRATEGIZE ALL YOU WANT, YOU WILL NEVER SEE ANY RESULTS UNLESS YOU ACTUALLY START DOING THINGS.
(March 2019) Board Response to Residents' Requests for Inspection and Maintenance Records and Reports:
"The Board has appointment (sic) an Asset Management Project Team (AMPT) who currently is working to develop a strategy and process for inspection of the areas of individual units for which the HOA has maintenance responsibilities. Once this strategy and process is finalized and approved by the Board, an implementation plan which will include the time frame, the companies and/or individuals performing the services and the costs of the inspection services will be shared with all residents."
"ASSET MANAGEMENT PROJECT TEAM" -- TWELVE (12) MONTHS AND STILL STUCK IN "ANALYSIS PARALYSIS."
The "Project Team" was appointed 3/26/2019. August 20, 2019 and the "Team" posts three new documents on the HOA website. We have lots of documentation and impressive busy work -- but still no actual inspections or preventive maintenance performed.
Spreadsheets are nice. How about actually doing something?
Wouldn't time and effort have been better spent on actual constructive, tangible activities and improvements? Like maybe, having roofs and siding inspected? Or start performing proactive, preventive, and restorative maintenance?
The HOA Board can (and should) be held accountable by HOA members for failure to conduct preventive maintenance or repairs. Planning to act in a reactionary way, instead of a proactive way, is risky and irresponsible
(August 25, 2019) Here's a suggestion for the "Asset Management Project Team":
Establish a Preventive Maintenance Schedule
Once you’ve determined which items are reserve components, it’s time to establish a preventive maintenance schedule. Associations should always establish a preventive maintenance schedule.
If associations do not maintain the components on the reserve schedule, they will not attain their full useful life. Consequently, the components will need to be replaced earlier and the replacement cost will need to be collected over a shorter period of time. This could result in possible special assessments.
The Board is unable to provide any reports and documentation on proper inspections and proactive, preventive maintenance of our units' roofs and siding performed in the last three years. Which leads us to believe such activity was never initiated or completed.
The Board is required by Article 3.3 in the Declaration to conduct timely inspections and preventive maintenance for each unit's roof and siding. There may be a fiduciary breach of the "duty of care" if there is neglect in the enforcement of governing documents and/or neglecting to maintain the HOA property.
Thousands of dollars have already been spent repairing roofs and siding. These roofing problems could have been addressed and evaluated as Construction Defect-Related Transition Issues. A professional transition inspection would have assessed whether any construction defects existed through poor workmanship or defective materials.
Based on the above facts there could be a breach of fiduciary duty due to the failure of the association to sue the developer, declarant or general contractor for construction defects where the unit roofs and siding were improperly constructed.
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