People Back 'Petty' Homeowner Embroiled in Dispute With HOA Over Hinges

Article Courtesy of  NEWSWEEK
By Rebecca Flood
Published April 1, 2022



A resident claims to be embroiled in a drama with their Homeowners Association (HOA) that started off as a query about decorative hinges.

The homeowner, based in Fort Myers, Florida, has been sharing a series of clips to their TikTok account, @keyrealtors, documenting the saga with the HOA, thought to be Castle Group.

Earlier this month, they posted a video, explaining: "My homeowners association denied my decorative garage door hinges."

"When I asked if everyone with a decorative wall hanging applied for approval, the board changed the rules and removed decorative wall décor from needing approval. Checkmate."

They ended the video by filming the side of their home, where they appeared to have mounted a garage door—complete with hinges—resembling the design of their functional garage.

In a series of follow-up clips, they recorded the new addition to their home, writing: "They try to say it isn't art but those who know..." While they zoomed in on a fake "Picasso" signature they'd added at the bottom.

However the artwork didn't seem to go down well with the HOA, as it posted a further update claiming: "The board changed the rules again! They removed the wall décor exception."

They filmed reams of documents, including letters, highlighting a section that said: "If the wall décor or plaque exceed 30"x30" or 900 sq ft, ARC approval is required."

The TikToker captioned the follow-up clip, posted on Friday, with: "My HOA caught wind of pt.1 when it went viral. They changed rules again to further target me after I beat them at their own game."
Need to Apply

The on-screen text from the video continued: "They sent a new violation letter for my Picasso wall décor saying I was supposed to apply for the modification."

An excerpt from a letter stated: "Specifically, you have permanently attached a garage door to your house and failed to request approval from the Architectural Review Committee."

My HOA caught wind of pt.1 when it went viral. They changed rules again to further target me after I beat them at their own game.


The video continued: "They met with the association attorney to review the mess they got themselves into. The board added me as a violation on the meeting agenda but when it came time to discuss they wouldn't say a single word."

And they confirmed their now-viral TikTok had been spotted, continuing: "Then the board saw part 1 with 100,000 likes and over 1 million views.

"Part 1 really hit a nerve so the board escalated right to trying to sue me to take down the Picasso. Still hanging proud, stay tuned for part 3."

The original clip—the part one—has been seen more than 4 million times, and can be viewed here, while the follow-ups have garnered more than 320,000 views in total.

Numerous people have commented on the drama, praising the homeowner for their "pettiness" over the issue.

According to research published in 2021 from iProperty Management, 58 per cent of homeowners live in HOAs in the U.S., with $250 the average monthly fee for a single family home.

They said: "California and Florida have the highest number of HOAs nationwide, with 97,700 between them. Florida has the highest concentration of community associations, with 67.3% of homeowners belonging to an HOA."

They've become increasingly popular, with 74.5% of homes sold in 2019 part of HOAs.

"From 2018 to 2019, HOA resident populations grew 0.54% as homeownership rates remained stagnate," they explained.

While 70 per cent of HOA residents claims to have a good experience, they noted that potential hidden costs can include "fines for property that does not comply with community regulations."