Only 6% of Louisiana homeowners are currently living in an HOA community. With one of the lowest HOA rates in the country, Louisiana homeowners and association boards may not know about HOA liens.
What is an HOA lien, and how does it work in the Bayou State? Read this guide to find out.
First, What Is a Property Lien?
A property lien is a legal claim allowing the lien-holder to take ownership of a piece of real estate if the current owner owes the lien-holder a debt. Let's use an example.
So, say you have a mortgage on your home. You get behind on mortgage payments, resulting in a debt owed to your lender.
If the lender so chooses, they can order a lien on your home. The lender then becomes the lien-holder of your house.
The lien may include an agreement requiring you, the owner, to pay back the debt within a certain time. Failing to pay what you owe may result in the bank seizing the home as collateral, selling it, and collecting the debt due to them.
What Is an HOA Lien?
If someone owes dues or fines to their homeowner's association (HOA), the HOA has the right to put a lien on your home to collect the debt.
HOA communities charge membership dues and fines for breaking neighborhood rules and regulations. Failing to pay these costs may result in late fees.
Louisiana HOAs have certain legal rights against homeowners who fail to pay the fees they owe, as well as any fines or late fees that have accumulated. One of those rights is a claim on the homeowner's property.
Getting a lien is a complex process, so most HOAs do not resort to this tactic outright. They will try regular means of debt collection first.
In the meantime, homeowners who owe a debt to their community HOA may not have access to shared facilities or services.
What About COA Liens?
COA liens are also legally enforceable by condo owners' associations. Condo owners who get behind on their COA fees may have a lien placed against their units. If they do not settle the debt, the COA may seize the unit as collateral.
How Long Do Louisiana Homeowners Have to Settle a Lien?
Louisiana homeowners have five years to settle an HOA lien. That means the homeowner has five years to pay what they owe. If they fail to settle the debt within that time, the HOA has a right to seize their home as collateral.
How Long Do Louisiana Condo Owners Have to Settle a Lien?
Louisiana condo owners also have five years to settle a COA lien. If the condo owner pays their debt within the time, the COA no longer has a privilege over the property.
PMI New Orleans: The HOA and COA Experts
A COA or HOA lien is a legal way to collect a debt owed by an owner in the community. Owners have five years to settle the lien before the HOA or COA has the right to seize their property.
Are you searching for expert advice about HOA or COA liens in New Orleans? Property Management Inc. New Orleans is here for you. Contact us for more advice and to find out about our HOA and COA management services.