HOA Complaint - Abuse, Neglect and 250k lawsuit.

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HOA Complaint - Abuse, Neglect and 250k lawsuit.

Post by cube_b3 » Sat Feb 27, 2021 11:42 pm

Before I copy paste the article In this forum, I've never been known for grammar and punctuation, post covid and dealing with brain fog. I feel like my communication skills have regressed. I had restarted my marketing business in January but covid derailed it. I lost 2 out of my 3 clients. Then this law suit came and whatever cognitive capacity I had left to concentrate on my business was wiped away with this. One of the lawyers I consulted advised me to share my experience on Nextdoor to give the HOA some headache. Unfortunately, I have not been able to write my story in a concise and cohesive manner. It is also more than 2 pages long. I have reached out to a co-worker to proof read it but I am just going to post it here as well.

HOA Complaint

I am a first time home owner, I bought my house in May 2019. I was not given the card to the amenity center or a welcome packet with any relevant information on how to get it. Months after moving in, I received a cryptically worded bill from a company called RealManage for "maintenance", the bill did not even mention HOA or the amenity center; it simply stated that I needed to pay $60 every quarter for maintenance. “What maintenance?” I wondered if it was spam. Months later I saw a plate outside the amenity center with RealManage’s logo outside the amenity center and I was able to connect the dots.

It was difficult to get a hold of RealManage, the bill was from a company in Dallas. I was able to Google their San Antonio location. In October 2019, I went to their office to request my card, but they wanted their bill to be paid first. Given that the bill was only $60, I agreed to pay it; however RealManage office did not accept cash or card rendering me unable to pay their bill.

In Spring 2020, I travelled abroad as we all know planes stopped flying at the height of the covid pandemic rendering me unable to return to the US until Fall 2020. During this time like many people I moved my mortgage into forbearance. I attempted to contact RealManage numerous times, but their phone lines were jammed, I would be subjected to endless hold times, with the line eventually disconnecting. I was unable to reach them over phone or email. I had to independently research and find a functional email via their Facebook page. I finally established contact in October, created an account on their website and formally disputed the bill:

Reason for Dispute
1) They did not have a welcome package and never gave me a card to use their facilities.
2) Their email address on the bill was incorrect. realservice@ciranet.com
3) When I visited their offices in 2019, they did not accept cash or card.

The representative who I spoke with via email, “Barbara Lowry” apologized informing me that RealManage couldn't waive the fees, however, she would send the card immediately. Additionally, she used covid as an excuse, stating the swimming pool had been closed due to covid. I explained that my dispute predates covid, furthermore, they should not be billing if the amenity center is closed. This exchange took place in October 2020 over multiple emails.

Despite promising to send the card, to date I have never received it. In November, a month after my initial correspondence I emailed RealManage again. This time I was informed, my account was in delinquency, and referred me to the debt collectors, without even the courtesy of informing me who they were. I had to follow up the email to enquire who they were. I had received a letter from the debt collectors Pulman Law stating that my account was delinquent, just a single letter. 18 months had passed and the bill had increased from $60 to $376.79. As I moved my house out of forbearance, I also refinanced it. Terms of the refinance required thal all outstanding dues be paid off therefore the outstanding balance of $376.79 was added into my closing fees and sent out to RealManage Dallas office in November by the title company.

In January 2021, the bill was still not processed. I followed up with The title company, who informed me that they had mailed the cheque, however RealManage has yet to withdraw the amount. Nonetheless, they immediately re-sent the cheque to them on January 7th 2021.

I kept checking the Ciranet App to see when the bill would be processed. On January 20th 2021, a charge of $750 “Legal Charges in Connection with the Collection of Delinquent Assessments-190818” was applied. This time I contacted the president of our HOA “Leon J Infante” and pleaded my case directly with him. He was not helpful and told me the HOA has hired them so that they don’t have to deal with me. I informed him I’ll have to get lawyers involved which prompted him to invite me to present my case to the entire HOA on 25th January. In the meeting I presented the following concerns:

1)I am a first time home owner.
2) RealManage did not have a welcome package and never provided me an access card.
3) Their offices did not accept cash or card.
4) Their phone lines were jammed and disconnected after hold times exceeding 30 mins.
5) Their email address printed on their bill was incorrect.
6) They outright lied to me, told me they would send the card and did not contact me again.
7) When I contacted them again, they told me to talk to collections.
8) I paid my bill in November 2020, as well as resubmitted it in January 2021.
9) All of this abuse is taking place during covid.
10) Above all they are trying to take my hard earned money without offering me anything in exchange.

The HOA largely disregarded all my concerns. They did acknowledge the incorrect email, and also stated I should have received a card as it could have been deactivated until I made my payment. They did not address RealManage however and only instructed me to pay the lawyer fees. I presented evidence that I had paid the bill, with a FedEx tracking number as well as the contents inside the mail. They simply disregarded all my complaints, even if they agreed with them, they only offered lip service and no tangible action.

After the meeting I was contacted by RealManage who informed me that my payment was received, but won’t be withdrawn. I would need to contact the debt collectors, as they have my account now. If Pulman Law has my account why does RealManage continue to bill me and not them? When I did contact Pulman Law and informed them about having made the payment in November. They informed me of an additional $750 legal fees, bringing the total legal fees to $1500 over $376.79. They then followed that email with another email adding an additional $300. Concluding $1800 legal fees over #376.79 bill.

I presented my case again to them stating that my home was refinanced in November and the title company mailed RealManage the cheque in November and again in January. They informed me they would submit my request for a waiver back to the HOA. As I was preparing to defend myself, find an appropriate lawyer, they served me with a $250,000 case. This was a deliberate attempt to block me from being able to afford legal counsel. As this takes the case to district court, instead of small claims.
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