People's neighborhood HOA's have always been a thorn in the side of homeowners just trying to live their lives. They always have their undies in a bunch over something that is going on with their neighbor's house. It seems that they just do so much more harm than good. These people were brave enough to fight against this "power." These are the best revenge stories against people's HOA's. Content has been edited for clarity.
"I was once made to re-sod my front lawn. In the middle of summer with average daily temperatures over 100 degrees. During one of the worst droughts on record. While the whole city was under watering restrictions.
The new lawn (which I had spent several hundred dollars on) promptly died and they tried to make me replace it again, but apparently enough people had complained by that point that before I did, they agreed not to make us replace our lawns until the water restrictions were lifted.
Confession time: I had to get up early for work (3am), so as I drove through the neighborhood, I looked for people watering their lawns in the middle of the night on violation of restrictions. Most people were just trying to avoid being hassled by the HOA, I know, so I left them alone. But when I saw members of the HOA board doing it, I reported them to the city."
"I go into work early some days to get at least some of my work done before the idiots show up. Usually before work, I go on about a five mile walk with my dog. I live in a condo so I walk about a quarter mile up the road and walk around in a neighborhood.
About eight months ago while I'm walking, a golf cart with actual lights and sirens pulls up in front of me. This huge old lady gets out and starts yelling before I can even get my headphones out of my ears. Turns out walking dogs isn't allowed before 7 am according to the HOA. I informed her that first of all I don't live there and second of all the streets were all public, so she couldn't really do much. She responded by threatening to call the cops and have me arrested. I just told her to do whatever she felt she had to and walked away.
This really ticked her off. She started following me in her golf cart with the lights and siren going. This continued for about ten minutes until the cops arrived on the scene. I stopped and talked with them for a bit and explained my side of things. It took maybe 20 minutes before they came back over to explain what was going to happen.
In the end, I had every right to walk my dog at anytime of day or night as long as I had a light when it was dark and had reflective clothing (I had both); as for her though...they tested the siren which exceeded noise levels for anytime before 8 am. Then to top it off, she didn't have it registered for use on public roads, and the tail lights didn't work. As I looped back around, the golf cart was getting loaded onto a tow truck and I just kinda laughed the whole way back to my condo."
"I had an HOA which regularly complained about petty things. I did fix them, but I was super annoyed.
I made a sign (very cheaply, white with black text) which said 'Yard of the Month' or something like that because it would annoy them greatly and wasn't technically against the rules. Later, they actually made a really nice and expensive official sign 'HOA OFFICIAL Yard of the Month' (really? I was joking) with nice graphics and nice metal frame. It was really official looking.
I noticed it on a walk at night when most people were already inside. So I grabbed the sign and moved it to someone else's yard which was obviously terrible looking with lots of weeds, etc. That sign never showed up again."
"We put a flag pole in our front yard when I was like 9 and the HOA got all ticked off. It turned into a big hand waving contest. First and only time I was on the news, in the newspaper and on the radio, all within about 2 weeks. Ultimately we were able to keep it, but we threw a big block party that sparked another controversy with the HOA.
Also about a year after I left home, they decided everyone had to have the same mailbox, they were nice mailboxes but I believe they cost over $200 and everyone had to pay an additional fee that year to cover the cost."
"I have owned one home (other than my tiny home, where I live now). I spent years saving up for the down payment. It was a new neighborhood (my house was old, but the rest of the neighborhood was built around it) and the HOA had just been established and the first president was a retired doctor.
I have two flag holders on the two posts in front of my porch. I flew the TN state flag and another flag (I normally flew a variety of flags that I switch up every month or so).
One month I decided to fly the Culpepper flag. The HOA president came knocking at my door, demanding I take it down because his wife was British and she was offended. I told him in nice words that he can suck it and he tried to fine me. I contested it with the board and got the fine overturned. Later on, he'd try to bust me for other things. I told him I do not want him on my property at any time and if I catch him on my plot (a good couple hundred feet from the sidewalk and surrounded by trees on the other three sides), I will call the cops. I left him a notice on his door and let the HOA board know about the notice.
I come home a week later to a fine ticket on how the lettering on my door was not in standard format. It included a picture up close and a signed confirmation from the president. I walked over to the HOA president's house and got into an argument with him. I called the cops and eventually took him to court, which resulted in a restraining order.
It got so messy after that, the HOA dissolved and my neighbors threw a huge party."
"Dogs in my condo must be under 35 lbs and cannot be walked on any common areas that are carpeted, nor in the elevator. Pretty much all the common areas are carpeted. I live in a 32 unit building on the 4th floor. There's a back stairway that is tiled that I can use, but sometimes it's a bit of a hassle walking up and down 4 flights just to avoid their precious 1987 carpeting from being walked on by a total of the 3 dogs that live in the whole building. People destroy the carpeting more than any of the dogs could, spilling food and drinks in the common areas all the time.
People are always complaining that we don't use the 'designated dog walking area' outside because there's 'dog feces' all over the other outside areas. All three of us dog owners use the designated area. The other areas happen to be inhabited by numerous ducks and geese. I'm not sure people in the building are aware of this, but the precious geese and ducks that make the property so attractive with the pond area poop. They poop all over. The cleanest area outside is the dog walking area (which, by the way, is not officially designated in the rules and regulations of the HOA).
Recently, all residents received a letter taped to their doors stating that someone let their dog poop on the carpet because 'dog feces' was found. Since the 3 dog owners all knew it wasn't any of us, we wondered how they were able to confirm that it was, in fact, dog feces that was found on the common area carpet. We later came to find out that the particular turd referenced in the letter was not from a dog. It turns out, one of the elderly gentleman in the building admitted to being the poopetrator. He has an incontinence problem and, for whatever reason, he had a bad accident and he was not able to get someone to help clean it up before someone else noticed and reported it.
It just ticks me off everyday, especially because I was not supplied with the specific addendum that had these strict rules when I bought the condo. If you don't want dogs in the building, just don't allow it. Don't make it so difficult to own one. Idiots. There's also a specific 'no rabbits' rule. I don't know what rabbit slighted someone in the past, but that's a silly rule considering rabbits would be kept in individual units where the owners would be responsible for damages and rabbits would never be in any common areas.
I have a rabbit. Stick that in your pipe and smoke it, HOA."
"Condo Association, not HOA. Eight units in two story buildings, with the entrance to each unit at the corners of the building. Second story units had stairs, obviously. When we bought the condo, the Condo Association agreement said that upkeep on all external structures, including stairways, were the responsibility of the Condo Assoc. A year after we moved in, after they had been bogged down with repair and repaint requests for stairways for seven-eight months, suddenly repair and upkeep of stairways are residents' responsibility!
We stopped paying our dues and let our stairway turn to garbage. They eventually repaired it but never repainted it, even years after we moved out."
"My grandmother got fined by HOA for having too many cars in front of the house.
3 cars were in the driveway. 1 was parked in the street. The street is at least three car lengths wide so it was not blocking traffic in any way.
Also, every day people have cars in front of their house, in the street.
The thing that gets me is, there were so many cars in front of the house because our whole family was over there grieving and helping my grandmother. My uncle (her son) had just died earlier that day. So naturally we all flocked to her house.
The real kick in the nuts, though, is that every member of the HOA had been by the house earlier that day to offer condolences, and apparently one of them thought it necessary to drop a notice in her mailbox that very day.
She didn't pay it. Nobody on the board has said anything about it to her."
"This occurred in Georgia. Family friend marries a man. He works at a power company. He ends up inventing some kind of new device which saves his company a bunch of money, he patents it and becomes very successful.
Now this guy (lets call him John), John is a simple man, he likes to hunt, fish, and enjoy the great out the doors. John is also very much a do it yourself guy.
Well John and his wife decide to use their new found wealth to move into a nice neighborhood who just so happens to have a HOA.
Well, the first hunting season comes around, John puts in a pole to hand his freshly killed deer from so he can butcher it and John goes out and bags himself a deer.
John proceeded to butcher the deer in his backyard which the neighbor wasn't too happy with and John got reported to the HOA. He ended up having to pay some fines, removing the stand, etc.
Well remember when I said John was a simple man? Also remember how he patented a new technology and made his money off that? John was no idiot, he was quite smart. So John poured over the HOA association. There was no rules against butchering deer on your property. However you couldn't put in an artificial pole in the ground.
So John worked with the HOA to plant a brand new tree in his front yard. He said it would increase property value and HOA was happy as heck to oblige.
So John planted his tree.
And come the next hunting season, John tied up his catch to the tree and butchered the deer on a lovely Sunday afternoon for all to see."
"We bought a house that had two stories. You could only get to the back yard from the bottom floor, through a bedroom. We decided that we would like to build a set of stairs from the upstairs deck to the back yard (like literally every other house on the street except for ours).
We were turned down because we 'owned all parts of the house except for the outside quarter inch' and harming that in any way was in violation of the HOA rules.
So my wife ran for treasurer, won, then approved our own request."
"Not a terribly abnormal HOA rule, but my dad's reaction was probably a standard deviation from the norm. Our old HOA had a policy that you can't have brown spots on your grass. Our yard had brown spots. Particularly in a corner where neighborhood dogs would relieve themselves every morning. One day my dad got a notice that if he didn't cure the brown spot the brown spot would be cured for him and he would be fined. For the next few weeks, my dad re-seeds and waters the area but ultimately can't combat the onslaught of dog urine. My dad tried to explain the situation to the HOA president/our next door neighbor (who had a dog, suspiciously), but the notice stood.
One day we're sitting in our living room and a landscaping truck pulls up. Like ninjas, they dig out and replace with new sod the urine soaked area. Two days later, we get a bill do re-sodding and a fine of 200 dollars.
Now my dad is normally a moderately reasonable man, but he went straight Hulk. He promptly went out to the yard, dug up the newly placed sod, calmly walked next door, and threw the sod at the window of the HOA president while screaming all sorts of obscenities my young self hadn't heard till then.
The grass was later re-sodded and we were charged 400 dollars and given two bills for re-sodding. Realizing he was defeated, we paid. We moved a year later for seemingly unrelated reasons but I like to believe my dad's impotent rage played some part in our decision to not buy in an HOA controlled community thereafter."
"We live in a community where the property is owned and managed by a private company but we have a resident's board who votes on things like property management. Some of the things the resident's board has voted on was increasing our parking areas (positive) and redoing the paving and landscaping between units (also positive).
We have four common areas and when we moved here. There were four playgrounds designed towards younger children in them. We also have a soccer pitch and basketball court, and a small playground geared towards older children.
The community is a mix of older residents and young families. The resident's board is mostly the older residents, because the young families don't have time to go to these meetings. Over the summer, the resident board voted to remove two of the playgrounds and replace them with gazebos or picnic tables or some sort of gathering area. I'm not sure what the specifics are, but pretty much everyone I talked to was okay with the idea because it would be nice to have a place to gather and talk and have a coffee outside.
But then the residents board had another meeting and voted to remove all of the playgrounds, except for the one designed for older children. They made this decision because nobody on the residents board had ever used the playgrounds (because their children are grown or they've never had children at all). They decided to leave the big kids playground, which has two swings and a tall slide and a climbing structure, but nothing low to the ground for smaller children. They said all the children could use that, but weren't going to add anything for the small children.
My family was pretty bummed about it because we just had a baby and now she wasn't going to have a playground nearby to play at, which was one of the reasons we moved here in the first place. But because we were too busy to go to the meetings or join the residents board we didn't get a vote on it.
But the story has a happy ending. Almost all of the families with small children contacted the management company in protest. So now instead of replacing all four playgrounds with gazebos, we're getting two gazebos and our playgrounds are all getting new equipment."
"Sad little creepy man was the head of our HOA. We previously had rules allowing people to keep their bicycles on their back porches. Somebody's kids left their bikes out a couple of times on a sidewalk, which was apparently a giant bug up this guy's butt. So, he proposed a rule change that the sad old people voted for, disallowing any outdoor bike storage.
A couple of weeks later, I was notified that I'd need to remove our two nicely covered bikes from our back porch. Failure to comply would result in fines. I appealed with a scathing letter, knowing full well the guy didn't have the stones to actually address the issue, since it was a complete non-issue. In the letter, I questioned the spirit of the rule, and insinuated that whoever proposed the rule must be a terribly sad person who should go spend some time reflecting on how their own personal misery affects others. He never looked me in the eye again, and the issue was dropped. We sold and moved out about 6 months later.
I will never buy something in a strict HOA community again. A social pseudo HOA? Maybe. But one that's got a billion rules about stupid things? Never again."
"A few years ago, I had let my cat out in the morning while I was getting ready for work and then heard the doorbell. Went to open the door and there was a woman standing there who asked if that was my cat, sitting in the front of my condo eating grass. I said, 'Oh yeah, that's mine...'
Then she said, 'You know, I think your cat might be killing bunnies.' At that point I just stared at her. In my head all I could think of was that if she was crazy enough to come to my door to let me know my cat wanders the neighborhood killing bunnies, who knows what else she could do.
She then continued, 'Just so you know, the HOA rules require all pets to be on leashes.' Due to me staring at her and not saying anything, she backed away from my door. I wanted to make this as uncomfortable for her as possible.
A few days later, I received a notice in the mail from the HOA stating the rule of having pets on a leash and that my cat was observed outside killing bunnies. The stupid HOA actually sent that notice. If they were to have contacted me in person, I would have thrown back at them why it is that the condo complex was overrun by rabbits and that they were not doing enough to control the bunny population.
In the end, nothing changed. The woman who came to my door and complained still walked her dog in front of my house. And once I noticed that she walked past I would let my cat outside. I finally noticed, years later, that she no longer walks by and probably moved, good riddance.
The HOA rules are enforced by people in your neighborhood. Stupid, petty, idiot people."
"At my girlfriend's former condo complex, the HOA sent a letter out that everyone had to paint their outside doors white. Any color of white, didn't matter apparently. My girlfriend replaced her door a year prior because of a psycho ex, and since the door was already white, so she ignored the letter.
Two weeks later, snobs from the HOA board knocked on her door to tell her she was in violation for not painting her white door another unspecified color of white.
Other people in the complex were ticked at how absurd this was, so they painted their doors in different off-white colors as protest. Now instead of everyone having white outside doors, some are light grey, some eggshell, some a pale white.
The HOA successfully ticked off some of the residents and now the buildings look stupid with some people's doors being different colors on the outside, and they're apparently OK with this since nobody is being written up."