HOAs Seek Association Fees from Banks

Condominium and home owners associations desperate for money are experimenting with a tactic called “reverse foreclosure” to force banks to pay association fees.

The process works like this: When a borrower stops paying the mortgage, banks often delay taking the property into foreclosure. When banks delay, neither the former home owner nor the bank is paying association fees.

To remedy this, the association files its own foreclosure notice, taking over the title. The association can’t sell the property because of the bank’s lien on it. So the association goes to court, renounces the property and asks the judge to give the title back to the bank.

When the judge does so, the bank has to pay the fees. Experts say this technique is becoming very popular in parts of the country where there are a lot of foreclosed condos.