Fatal Blow to the Sycamore Vista HOA

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Click pic to enlarge and read the “Dedication.”  Note the annotation on the plat map where the County deeds all alleys, drainageways, equestrianways and easements to the HOA at DK 12965 PG 293 (5 January 2007); the 1964 Dedication made all those “public.”

Dear Mr. Neff: I just read your article about Raimey v. Dreamland, I was wondering what your opinion of this case is in regards to the documents you drew up for New Tucson. At the time, according to the plat maps, there were no common areas in the subdivision, all areas were “dedicated to the public.” When the HOA formed and building permits were applied for, the HOA assumed ownership of the “Equestrian Ways,” drainage areas, etc. as separate, assessed parcels. Am I as a lot owner required to pay assessments and dues to the HOA?

I should add: does the HOA now owe me all the money I paid in dues & assessments!?

The AZ Court of Appeals found:

Deed restrictions for residential community without
common areas, containing only restrictive covenants
pertaining to each lot owner’s personal residence,
could not be amended by majority vote of lot owners
to require membership in homeowners’ association
and imposition of assessments, and thus amended
declaration of restrictions requiring lot owners to pay
assessments to association was invalid.

Read annotated PDF of Raimey v Dreamland.

Plat map shows common areas belonged to the public and that in January 5, 2007 (Docket 12965, Page 293) were deeded by Pima County to the HOA.

Plat map detail shows common areas belonged to the public and that on January 5, 2007 (Docket 12965, Page 293) were deeded by Pima County to the HOA.

Neff drew up the CC&Rs for New Tucson (which is now called “Sycamore Vista”), prior to that there was only three pages of deed restrictions.

Notes to self:

One lawyer’s comments on the Dreamland case.

Another lawyer’s comments on the Dreamland case.

Interesting, similar Arizona case that goes in depth about “unconscionability of contracts,” Nickerson v. Green Valley Recreation Inc.

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