Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Things Fall Apart, The Drama

The battle lines were drawn.

Hackles were raised.

It was only a matter of time before a match dropped into this powder keg of hurt feelings and bruised emotions.

Boy howdy, did it ever.

From what I understand thinly veiled accusation were made about the handling of association finances. The bait was taken and that led to a personal attack against the individual who voiced the thinly veiled accusation.

And so on and so forth.

It got ugly. Real ugly. Real quick.

Aside from the childishness of such an exchange, comments like that had (and have) no place in any association meeting.

I get that you may not have the warmest feelings toward your neighbor but if I could sit next to my developer when he chose to come to meetings and not loose my shit; then everyone else can grin and bear it.

Moreover, personal attacks and bickering mean that association business can't get done. If business can't get done we can't move forward on several important topics that need our immediate attention.

Such as a fellow owner who doesn't see fit to pay their assessments.

And when I say not paying their assessments, I don't mean not slowly paying because your unemployed like me.

I mean not paying because they "don't understand what assessments are for."

I'm not sure if it occurred to anyone within this little melodrama that the fires of animosity may be actively stoked to throw the scent off other outstanding business.

And when I say outstanding business I mean delinquent assessments.

What bothers me the most is that a confidence that was entrusted to me was one of those extremely personal zingers exposed at that meeting.

While I don't remember ever repeating this confidence, after the incident was brought to my attention and much thought, it is unlikely that the information came from anyone else.

Plus my name was brought up as the source of the information.

That's how you know this shit is running deep.

I've been privileged to be entrusted with a great deal of information from many people.

And as relationships tend to go, sometimes you have disagreements big or small with your peeps.

But I've managed to keep the lid on where several bodies are buried despite pissing someone off or being pissed off. It's important that people vent. As the saying goes, no man (or woman) is an island.

Unless you're under subpoena, you need to keep the highly personal stuff out of the gossip mill.

That's how crazy all of this has gotten.

Now I'm telling tales out of school.


Erin said...

not understanding what assessments are for makes me feel cray cray and slightly like i want to stab my eyes out. we had some people who didnt understand what assessments are for and refused to pay them and now we're suing them. it's a bag off good times.

The North Coast said...

All you can do with folks who "don't understand what the assessments are all about" is:

1. Show them the association budget with the documentation, such as receipts and bills.

2. Then send them notice to pay their arrears and continue to pay;

2. And if they don't pay, you must have them foreclosed, and fast, before the assessments pile up too high. I mean, but you have to go after them aggressively.

I emphasize that last, whether they are able to pay or not, because the building's bills will be the responsibility of the paying owners, who will have to pick up the slack for non-paying owners.

kwintessential said...

When you attend the association meetings, all of the financials should be provided to the membership. How can one purchase a unit, and not understand where their money is going?

The North Coast said...

You should obtain the financials on building before you even buy into it.

That so many new condo owners can't figure out what their assessments are for indicates the depths of ignorance among our population about personal finance and the responsibilities of home ownership. No wonder we have so many people losing their homes to foreclosure in spite of being employed at jobs that pay reasonably well.