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John T. Weatherford's picture
Joined: 08/06/2007
Posts: 66
A little history lesson

In the Bee this morning in the Biz section Home Front:

http://www.sacbee.com/103/story/784578.html

Neighborhood watchHomeowners associations get a lot of grief for board squabbles and telling people what color they can paint their front doors. But there's one huge advantage in times when foreclosures bring empty houses and brown lawns to many neighborhoods.

A homeowners association can make foreclosures almost invisible. Consider the 3,400- home Serrano neighborhood of El Dorado Hills. With 45 vacant properties, it has its share of people losing homes. But the Serrano El Dorado Owners' Association has a special program for what happens after the bank takes possession.

"We make sure those homes are watched over and maintained so they don't become a problem," said John Bowman, general manager of the HOA. "If you drive through Serrano, you shouldn't know if there is a house that is unoccupied at the time."Association crews keep up lawns and landscaping, and use water trucks if the bank shuts down the plumbing. Security workers have lists of vacant homes and routinely check on them. Newspapers and mailers aren't allowed to pile up as they often do at empty houses in other neighborhoods.

Apparently, that's not all the association does well with its $8 million annual budget and 70 employees. Recently, Serrano El Dorado was named 2007 association of the year for Northern California. That territory includes 200 planned communities between Sacramento and Oregon. Serrano sold its first homes in 1995.

Here’s a question for you old timers. “What was the name of the General Manager we ran off in the early 90’s?”

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Jack Tavolario's picture
Joined: 11/07/2007
Posts: 64
Run off GM.

In all fairness to everyone, Serrano and RMA couldn’t have been more dissimilar then, and they aren’t much more similar now.

 

John was a likeable guy and came up through the ranks here, from pushing a broom to the interim GM. But the truth is, he was in over his head at this place at that particular point in time, as anyone would have been, and were.

 

If you remember, that was the year of the infamous 2nd Restated, and I can tell you that it was John, and no one else, who caused the changes to the declaration that now stop the Assn from getting paid to take care of the TH landscapes. That one mistake has cost RMA well over a half million dollars since 1997. But it wasn’t his fault that no one was around to explain what the heck was going on!

 As anyone can see, John has turned out to be a good GM, and I’m glad for him. But the tone of the time back then was bad enough for experienced people, let alone someone at their 1st position as a GM.

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