From the Office of State Senator Rodney Ellis

For Immediate Release
February 6, 1999
Contact: Jeremy Warren, (512) 463-0113

Statement of Senator Rodney Ellis on Homeowner Associations

HOUSTON -- "Owning your own home makes up the core of the American Dream. Across Texas, homeowner associations serve an important role in realizing that dream. They work with homeowners to keep neighborhoods safe and clean. Sometimes, however, it is clear that some homeowner associations abuse their power, and that families across Texas do not know or fully understand the powers that homeowner associations can have over such a major part of their lives.

"Last year, the Senate investigated the relationship between homeowners and homeowner associations and decided more needs to be done to ensure families know their rights -- and the duties they are expected to uphold -- when they purchase a home. Today's town hall is an important step in finding common ground on an issue that is vitally important to our city.

"I have filed legislation, SB 317, SB 318 and 319, which I hope finds a way to balance the rights of homeowners -- many of whom have suffered irresponsible and intolerable abuses -- and the associations that play an important role in cities like Houston. My main concern is that homeowners are protected against possible abuses by insensitive or irresponsible homeowner associations, particularly against any hasty foreclosure decisions initiated by homeowners associations. My legislation will ensure due diligence has to be observed in cases where a family can lose their home, and improve disclosure and proper notice of any action on the part of the homeowners association, while maintaining a strong role for homeowner associations.

"My legislation will hopefully strike a working balance between the rights of homeowners, and the duties of homeowner associations. I believe this town hall is a concrete step in finding common ground, and I look forward to working with my colleagues in the Legislature to find a solution to this problem."