New Homeowner's Day 2018 is on Tuesday, May 1, 2018: Can I start a Homeowner's Association in an existing neighborhood?
Tuesday, May 1, 2018 is New Homeowner's Day 2018. Tax Day 2011: What's new for homeowners - CSMonitor. What's new for homeowners
Well you can, but it would be strictly voluntary to participate in and you wouldn't have the ability to enforce any standards beyond your municipal codes and ordinances.
Usually a Homeowner's Association is started by the people who own the land they have decided to develop into a subdivision. Since they own all the land and they are selling it, they write the terms of the sale, they include "deed restrictions" which are the rules of the Homeowner's Association and the deed restrictions are the teeth. When people buy a home or a lot in the subdivision they have to agree to the deed restrictions and if in the future they refuse to abide by them, their home can be taken from them because they have violated the restrictions they agreed to have on their deed.
For example deed restriction may establish a maximum for fence height, it may require a certain material for fencing (so they all look the same) it may require that your home be painted certain colors, it may forbid other colors. It might require that the house you build have a certain number of square feet, be completed in a certain number of days. It may restrict what kind of animals you have (I can have elephants, but not pigs), whatever kind of neighborhood the owners of the land that was subdivided could dream up. They write the contract so that the restrictions pass on to whoever may buy or inherit the property from you.
Since your neighborhood already exists, these deed restrictions are not in place, so your association couldn't make anyone comply.
Replacement cost for homeowner's insurance?
This is how the insurance policy says it is done.
Pretty standard language in the insurance policy- if the value of the claim exceeds $500 then the claim is settled at Actual Cash Value.
You have 180 days from the date of the loss to submit the receipts and get paid for the deprecation.
Handling it this way makes perfect sense. Here's why:
You have a lap top in your building. The lap top burns up in a fire.
The lap top has a replacement cost of $1000.
However, it was 2 years old. If you were to sell the item, it could sell for $400. That means the actual cash value of the lap top was $400.
The value of your asset was $400 (not $1000).
The insurance company pays you the actual cash value of the lap top ($400). As such, you have been made whole. You have been put exactly where you were before the fire. You owned a $400 asset and have been paid $400.
Since you have a replacement cost policy - you can replace the item and get paid the deprecation.
You ONLY get paid the depreciation if you replace the item. (Hence: "replacement cost coverage" = you gotta "replace" the item)
If you chose not to replace the item then you have been made whole because you were paid the value of the asset lost.
The reason it is done this way:
1. the purpose of insurance is to put you back where you were before the loss. Not better. By paying you the value of the asset - you have been put back in a pre-loss condition. If the paid you replacement cost but did not require you to actually replace the item...then you have been put in a better position.
2. by requiring you to actually replace the item - you reduce the likelihood of fraud. You remove a major incentive for people to burn their buildings down and get paid $100,000 when they only owned assets worth $50,000.
The insurance company is handling this claim per the provisions in the policy.
Lender's working with homeowner's in distress?
You might tell your brother to contact his lender, things have changed in the equation since he has lost his job.
I was reading the other day that lenders were now working with borrowers even though they were not behind in their mortgage payments.
So his lender might be one of those that have changed their policy.
He should call his lender and ask for their policy on Loan Modification and the various programs they have available.
There are many companies that will charge you to do the various loan modification programs offered, however most just take common sense in completing the forms. You might get a little assistance from the lender as to what is missing.
The forms sent to you by your lender should tell you what is required in additional to completing the forms.
If your brother can not do it himself, he might want to call one of the many firms that are popping up to do this chore for individuals. He should also find out the cost to accomplish what he want with them and if there are underlying cost involved.
I hope this has been of some use to you, good luck.