There’s a reason that home ownership is considered the cornerstone of the American dream. Not only is it a solid investment in your family’s financial future, but it is a reward for your hard work. At the end of a long day, it’s nice to come home to a beautiful home and neighborhood. Homeowners Associations help make part of that dream possible. They help maintain communal spaces, sponsor events, and enforce regulations that keep the neighborhood beautiful. They couldn’t do this important work without pooling the resources of the entire community. So, when residents don’t pay their dues, it hurts everyone.
Challenges of HOA Debt Collection
When residents don’t pay their HOA dues, it can be very hard to collect them. Since there is no direct good or service they are receiving for this payment, some residents treat it as an optional expense. This is especially true when finances become difficult or disputes arise between the resident and the HOA. This can make many of the typical penalties for non-payment ineffective. In disputes, residents often don’t care if they lose certain membership privileges. Additional fees won’t further motivate those who can’t pay to begin with.
In these cases, HOAs have to take more decisive action. In some states, legal action can be taken, such as lawsuits, wage garnishment, and property liens or foreclosure. However, this can be difficult to enforce in many communities because of the limitations of the HOA itself. HOAs are typically run by a board composed of fellow residents who serve on a volunteer basis. Taking legal action against residents for non-payment of HOA dues is a very time consuming task. It requires coordinating with attorneys, appearing in court, and possibly participating in mediated negotiations. It also creates a difficult social situation that is disruptive to community harmony.
Advantages of Professional Debt Collection
There is an old expression that good fences make good neighbors. The same can be said for good boundaries. Working with a debt collection agency helps homeowners associations establish those boundaries. Outsourcing collection efforts makes it easier for HOA board members and residents to live and work together peacefully. It can also return valuable time to the HOA board, so they can get back to coordinating events and making their neighborhood special.
Collection agencies are also much better equipped to handle the legal matters related to collecting HOA debt. They can fully explain the consequences of continued non-payment and use it as leverage to get residents to pay their outstanding dues. They can also actually put plans in motion to act on those legal options if the resident continues to refuse to pay.
Keep Your Neighborhood Beautiful with Southwest Recovery
At Southwest Recovery Services, we know that keeping your neighborhood peaceful starts with treating your neighbors with respect. We think of ourselves as an extension of the businesses and organizations we serve. Our first priority is to treat people who owe debts with a firm but understanding hand. We know that when people are respected, they are more likely to pay their outstanding debts. Get in touch with us today to learn how we can help you resolve your outstanding dues.