Barker Martin

Condo-HOA Blog - Bellingham

Don't Avoid Issues, Investigate Them and Consider Options

People often focus on the negative ramifications associated with litigation. It can be costly, time consuming and often not the most efficient method of resolving disputes. Associations will sometime actively avoid dealing with an issue because it might result in litigation and often fail to consider the ramifications of not pursuing, or at least considering, litigation. For example, associations will sometimes avoid investigating the extent of a problem because they fear what they might find. An association may become aware of water intrusion and avoid investigating the extent of their problem, fearing it might lead to extensive repairs, insurance claims and perhaps litigation. Avoiding the issue will never make it go away. Associations do not avoid issues by ignoring them. The issues and resulting damage compound while the options for relief become more limited. Eventually, a potential insurance claim or litigation is barred by applicable statutes of limitation and repose. Increased damages and no ability to pursue relief is not a good combination. read more

Last Minute Budget Advice for Washington Communities

By now, many communities in Washington will already have prepared, and maybe even had budgets approved, for 2019, but we wanted to get in one last reminder that because WCIOA's budget section applies to all condos and HOAs, your budget may be a little different this year, and you may have a little explaining to do at the budget ratification meeting. But whether the application of the WCIOA budget provision at RCW 64.90.525 is simple or not depends upon whether you are working with an HOA or Condo. Below are some highlights of the differences you may have to explain to owners. read more

Foreclosure: Judicial vs. Non-Judicial

In both Washington and Oregon, community associations that have lien rights for nonpayment of assessments have two options when considering foreclosing on units or lots: judicial or non-judicial foreclosure. Whether a foreclosure is judicial or non-judicial is significant as each have their own processes, procedures, and timelines for terminating the owner's ownership interest in the property. read more

Water Damage: Do You Have A Plan? and Have You Communicated the Plan?

Water events are common. Roof leaks, window failures, plumbing leaks, failed hot water tanks and dishwasher melt downs are going to happen. The only question is when. Sometimes the problem is discovered immediately and sometimes a leak can be hidden, resulting in significant damage prior to discovery. read more

Social Media - Some Pros & Cons

I think we can all agree that social media is becoming more and more pervasive. What used to be an occasional diversion to reconnect with high school friends, has become a significant source of news and social and political engagement for everyone from the Greatest Generation to Gen Z'ers. Of course, this includes homeowners and board members, many of whom believe social media should be a public square to discuss and debate association issues, and even to allow owners to air grievances. However, whether or not social media is a good thing for community associations is debatable. read more

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