Does Every (or any) HOA Qualify as an Oligarchy?

I got a call the other day – someone who found me on the web, and who wanted to complain about his HOA. He started out with the words: “I found you on the web. I want to tell you about the association I live in -its a real oligarchy … [blah, blah, blah]”. I listened for about 5 minutes, unable to get in a word edgewise, and when I could, I asked if he wanted to arrange a legal consultation. He went on a few more moments and at this point, I had to interrupt to tell him that (1) I needed to do a conflicts check and (2) that there was a cost for consultations. He said he didn’t want to pay anything to anyone “unless he has a case.”

These are my comments:

I understand people are often frustrated by the time they find me.

I try to be patient.

I cannot afford to work for free.

I do spend at least 1-2 hours a day giving service, meaning writing articles, blogs and brainstorming solutions, and providing generalized information for the masses of people who live in, work in, serve in, or are in dispute with their HOAs.

Maybe this person’s HOA board was an oligarchy – definition:


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Rule by the few, often seen as having self-serving ends. Aristotle used the term pejoratively for unjust rule by bad men, contrasting oligarchy with rule by an aristocracy. Most classic oligarchies have resulted when governing elites were recruited exclusively from a ruling class, which tends to exercise power in its own interest. The term is considered outmoded today because “few” conveys no information about the nature of the ruling group.”

But maybe not. Guess I’ll never know because I did not have the opportunity to ask any questions that would tell me if the person had made any effort to ask for things in the “right” way.

I have helped hundreds of owners over the past few years and have an HOA client list of over 300 HOAs that call me when they need help.  I don’t often post testimonials simply because I am too busy researching, reading, and writing and when I am not doing that, I am working, enjoying my children and grandchildren, creating art, traveling, photographing or doing something constructive.

I hope that if you believe your HOA Board is an oligarchy, that you will think not only about that but about what you have been doing to ask for what you want in the “right” way, and that you have explored the wealth of information available on various topics on the website.  The more educated you are the more likely you will be able to effectively exercise your rights within the association.





  • Share/Bookmark

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.