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NH Woman Sued For Planting Flowers In Her Front Yard
CBS Boston WBZ-TV ^ | March 19, 2012 | Jim Armstrong

Posted on 03/20/2012 11:26:44 AM PDT by grundle

PORTSMOUTH, N.H. (CBS) – Kimberly Bois’ tiny front yard garden isn’t much to look at right now. But in a few weeks, it’ll be in full bloom, and every blossom will cost her dearly.

Even though she says her builder gave her permission to do a little planting, the current condo board now says she’s in violation.

They’re charging the Portsmouth, New Hampshire homeowner $50 a day for being so petal pushy. That fine has reached close to $6,000, plus the board’s legal fees.

“It’s just not a happy place to live anymore for me,” says Bois, who planted the small flower bed with the help of her mother, who has since passed away.

She says, “It just feels like we’ve been bullied and really all we wanted to do was have a conversation to figure out how this can benefit all of us.”

A new certified letter arrives every month, ordering Bois to uproot her garden and keeping track of her fines.

It got so bad, she contacted a Realtor friend of hers to talk about just selling the place that she has owned since 2008.

That’s when she got the real shock: the board put a lien on her townhouse for their fines.

Bois says the whole situation has, “gotten out of control.”

She even offered to pull up the flowers and pay part of the board’s legal fees a couple of weeks ago – an offer she says was refused.

The association’s bylaws don’t expressly forbid planting flowers on your property, Bois explains, nor do they explicitly allow it.

Board members have told Bois they just want all the units to look the same.

“Now we’ve gone down a rabbit hole that I just can’t seem to get out of and it’s very sad, and it’s upsetting,” she says.

WBZ reached out to the attorney who represents the condo association, but he did not respond our request for comment.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; Miscellaneous; US: New Hampshire
KEYWORDS: hoa; rapeofliberty
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1 posted on 03/20/2012 11:26:52 AM PDT by grundle
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To: grundle

That which is not expressly permitted is verboten.


2 posted on 03/20/2012 11:31:51 AM PDT by LilAngel (FReeping on a cell phone is like making Christmas dinner in an Easy Bake Oven)
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To: grundle

That which is not expressly permitted is verboten.


3 posted on 03/20/2012 11:32:24 AM PDT by LilAngel (FReeping on a cell phone is like making Christmas dinner in an Easy Bake Oven)
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To: grundle

That which is not expressly permitted is verboten.


4 posted on 03/20/2012 11:32:38 AM PDT by LilAngel (FReeping on a cell phone is like making Christmas dinner in an Easy Bake Oven)
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To: grundle

My wife and I decided to live in a neighborhood that has an association. However, we read the rules before we bought the house and understood the fees. It costs 880 a year and 225 for the boat slip. However, it is worth the money knowing that you won’t have a neighbor who will have various cars on blocks and neighbors who don’t mow their lawn, etc. I have zero problem with associations as long as you know what you are getting into.


5 posted on 03/20/2012 11:33:11 AM PDT by napscoordinator (A moral principled Christian with character is the frontrunner! Congrats Santorum!)
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To: grundle
Nazis in homeowner's associations are just frustrated because they couldn't get appointed or elected to positions which wouldn't allow them to boss more people around.

This is exactly the type of bullsh*t which once led to a tarring and feathering.

6 posted on 03/20/2012 11:33:11 AM PDT by Vigilanteman (Obama: Fake black man. Fake Messiah. Fake American. How many fakes can you fit in one Zer0?)
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To: grundle

You see, that is why I live as far away from other people as is practical.


7 posted on 03/20/2012 11:33:46 AM PDT by albionin
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To: grundle

She needs to get the other condo owners to elect her to the board!


8 posted on 03/20/2012 11:34:00 AM PDT by DivineMomentsOfTruth ("Give me Liberty or I'll stand up and get it for myself!")
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To: grundle

Not very bright of the condo board. I’m glad this is picking up news coverage, as stupidity is always both newsworthy and...stupid.


9 posted on 03/20/2012 11:34:09 AM PDT by BlueStateBlues (Blue State business, Red State heart. . . . 2012 for change, this time for the people)
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To: grundle

If you buy into a socialist committee run domicile then you had better know all of the rules and conditions before you sign. Most of these groups are dictatorships and you have not bought a home but an agreement not much different than a rental contract. In fact, most rental contracts have fewer dictates than these HA rules.


10 posted on 03/20/2012 11:34:24 AM PDT by RJS1950 (The democrats are the "enemies foreign and domestic" cited in the federal oath)
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How many times do I have to tell you? LOL


11 posted on 03/20/2012 11:35:13 AM PDT by LilAngel (FReeping on a cell phone is like making Christmas dinner in an Easy Bake Oven)
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To: grundle

I know that there are many many good lawyers out there. Someone near this woman - please - get with her and take this board to the woodshed.

Get creative.

Make them afraid for their very well being.

Now’s the time to bring the term “lawsuit” to good repute.


12 posted on 03/20/2012 11:35:57 AM PDT by Da Coyote
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To: grundle

You knowing signed away your freedom and chose to live there.


13 posted on 03/20/2012 11:35:59 AM PDT by Theoria (Rush Limbaugh: Ron Paul sounds like an Islamic terrorist)
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To: albionin

Right on!


14 posted on 03/20/2012 11:36:41 AM PDT by AtlasStalled
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To: grundle

Our homeowners’ association harassed a beautiful young mother who was dying of breast cancer. She had planted a line of Leyland cypresses on her property line to give herself some privacy. After they’d been in for several years and were pretty big, the HOA decided they didn’t like the evergreens. It was pointed out to them that there is NOTHING in the HOA documents that says that these trees or any other bushes, trees, vegetation, of any sort are prohibited, or that a homeowner has to ask permission of the HOA to plant anything. Nevertheless they tormented her. She’s dead now and beyond the reach of fascists.


15 posted on 03/20/2012 11:37:13 AM PDT by ottbmare (The OTTB Mare)
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To: grundle

Condo Associations deliberately leave things open and will selectively enforce the rules. I’m guessing this lady isn’t popular with the current board.


16 posted on 03/20/2012 11:37:59 AM PDT by liberalh8ter (Barack has a memory like a steel trap; it's a gift ~ Michelle Obama)
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To: grundle

Tell ‘em they’re poppies, for medicinal purposes, which are covered under Obamacare.
Tell ‘em to go read it if they don’t believe you.....


17 posted on 03/20/2012 11:39:05 AM PDT by G Larry (We are NOT obliged to carry the snake in our pocket and then dismiss the bites as natural behavior.)
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To: grundle

Another “Spalding moment”, wherein the board members are each left with the trademark imprint on their foreheads.

(so they all look alike....)


18 posted on 03/20/2012 11:41:24 AM PDT by G Larry (We are NOT obliged to carry the snake in our pocket and then dismiss the bites as natural behavior.)
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To: grundle
The association’s bylaws don’t expressly forbid planting flowers on your property

This lady might win in court, with the misery caused by omnipotent board members reconciled -- slightly.

I'm not a lawyer, but I'd personally consider suing the board members.

19 posted on 03/20/2012 11:41:33 AM PDT by OldNavyVet
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To: grundle

Welcome to Duloc, such a perfect town
Here we have some rules, let us lay them down
Don’t make waves, stay in line
And we’ll get along fine
Duloc is a perfect place

Keep your feet off the grass
Shine your shoes, wipe your...face
Duloc is, Duloc is
Duloc is a perfect place


20 posted on 03/20/2012 11:44:28 AM PDT by Southside_Chicago_Republican (I don't have a blog to pimp, nor would I pimp it if I had one. I swear.)
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To: grundle

Life in liberal land is hell. Keep voting democrats!


21 posted on 03/20/2012 11:45:08 AM PDT by BO Stinkss
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To: RJS1950
We have a couple of beauties here....No above ground pool, no cloth lines or clothes poles. No sheds. No outdoor grills. No outdoor antenna....

These are ordinary residential lots. Most folks don't know until they violate a rule.

22 posted on 03/20/2012 11:45:12 AM PDT by Sacajaweau
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To: grundle

Life in liberal land is hell. Keep voting democrats!


23 posted on 03/20/2012 11:45:12 AM PDT by BO Stinkss
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To: grundle

Ah, the joys of collectivism.

(hoping I don’t need the /s)


24 posted on 03/20/2012 11:45:42 AM PDT by Westbrook (Children do not divide your love, they multiply it.)
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To: OldNavyVet

I’m betting she planted in the “common area”.


25 posted on 03/20/2012 11:47:40 AM PDT by Sacajaweau
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To: DivineMomentsOfTruth

Absolutely right. I hear so many people complain, but then they are unwilling to serve. I have served on my Condo Board several times. I insist that everything be done according to the CC&R’s. That is the fairest way. Don’t move there if you don’t want to be bound by CC&Rs.


26 posted on 03/20/2012 11:50:52 AM PDT by w1andsodidwe (Barrak has nowuwon the contest. He is even worse than Jimmah.)
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To: Vigilanteman

And no one was a bigger violator of my condo association’s rules than the board members themselves. The woman across the parking lot from me would have her boyfriend washing his car in the lot and another one’s dog was about 25 lbs over the limit. Both fine offenses. What did I get fined $25 for? Throwing a football with one of my friends during the halftime of a Pats game. “Organized sports on the property were not allowed.” After putting the condo back on the market I set up my drums in the basement. They didn’t see that one coming!


27 posted on 03/20/2012 11:50:52 AM PDT by massgopguy (I owe everything to George Bailey)
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To: grundle

Welcome to Duloc, such a perfect town
Here we have some rules, let us lay them down
Don’t make waves, stay in line
And we’ll get along fine
Duloc is a perfect place

Keep your feet off the grass
Shine your shoes, wipe your...face
Duloc is, Duloc is
Duloc is a perfect place


28 posted on 03/20/2012 11:51:15 AM PDT by Southside_Chicago_Republican (I don't have a blog to pimp, nor would I pimp it if I had one. I swear.)
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To: grundle

‘She even offered to pull up the flowers and pay part of the board’s legal fees a couple of weeks ago – an offer she says was refused.’

Thats interesting! So is it about money or making an example of her...or both?


29 posted on 03/20/2012 11:51:43 AM PDT by 556x45
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To: Da Coyote

I own a home in New Hampshire. I was the first occupant of that home. When I moved in, the woman next door (Massachusetts refugee) had a garden planted on my lot. She said the builder gave her permission to plant the garden there and that the realtor assured her the property adjacent to her lot ‘was more like hers than the owners’ due to the geometry. I told her she should harvest the garden in the fall, but not plant one there in the spring. She did not speak to me after that. At the other end of her lot, she used the other abutter’s land to store debris. She also removed all the lot line stakes.

A few years later, a couple moved in across the street. In the course of improving their lot, they accumulated a substantial amount of debris. They burned the debris on the lawn of an unoccupied adjacent lot. These people were from Michigan.

Makes me wonder where this person in Portsmouth is from who thinks her rights are somehow more important than those she entered into a contract with.


30 posted on 03/20/2012 11:51:51 AM PDT by wizwor
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To: wizwor

A very provincial view of it. Perhaps its the general tenor of the neighborhood that draws these cretins.


31 posted on 03/20/2012 11:55:58 AM PDT by 556x45
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To: grundle

When the rules are laid out in the CC&Rs, and you buy into an association that’s the way it goes.
Don’t move into a place with an HOA, if you are not willing to be governed by the those very CC&Rs.


32 posted on 03/20/2012 11:56:02 AM PDT by svcw (CLEAN WATER & Education http://www.longlostsis.com/PI/MayanHelp2012.html)
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To: RJS1950

Exactly.. Condo communities usually have a least one little dictator on the board.. They Love spending other peoples money on what they deem to be important (not unlike our elected officials).
Unfortunately, people who feel they can’t afford a nice single family home..or those who want/need all the maintenance done for them.. give up some freedom for that convenience.


33 posted on 03/20/2012 11:57:20 AM PDT by DivineMomentsOfTruth ("Give me Liberty or I'll stand up and get it for myself!")
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To: RJS1950
There are definite advantages to living in a condo...BUT....**READ** the HOA rules **BEFORE** buying. I would also suggest that you carefully read the minutes of the last 5 years of board meetings. These meeting minutes will give the buyer a good idea of whether they will be dealing with rational or irrational neighbors.

I have little sympathy for condo owners who are **shocked** ( yes, **shocked!**) that they can put statutes of the Virgin Mary on the front steps, fly the US. Marine Corps flag, paint their front door red, hang fuchsia curtains that show in their front windows, store their 14 ft sail boat on the back deck, or plant whatever vegetation that they want. If restrictions and HOA’s are not what they want, then DO NOT buy there!

M husband and I have had 13 years of basically very satisfying condo living,...BUT...we did our research **BEFORE** we bought, and were completely willing to abide by the HOA rules. We are grateful not to have to worry about lawn care, or outside maintenance. We can travel anytime we want on a whim. The condo manager will check on our property while we are gone to see that everything remains safe and sound. Because we are an HOA community, we are extremely unlikely to get a meth house next door, ( as happened in our old neighborhood), and, if this were to happen we have considerable power to get rid of them. As we grow older, we will likely be able to stay in our own home longer because we do not have the worry of outside maintenance. The neighborhood is always well maintained, and this helps preserve the value of our investment......

BUT.....We knew BEFORE we bought what restrictions condo living entails and were completely prepared to accept that.

34 posted on 03/20/2012 12:05:56 PM PDT by wintertime (Reforming a government K-12 school is like reforming an abortion center.)
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To: grundle

If someone wants to live where there is a mandatory HOA, they need to read the fine print.

I prefer to do as I choose, so I’ll continue to live in the woods forever, even if it is in a tent under a tree.


35 posted on 03/20/2012 12:08:23 PM PDT by Texan5 ("You've got to saddle up your boys, you've got to draw a hard line"...)
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To: w1andsodidwe

True! 16 years ago.. due to divorce and lack of funds.. I reluctantly moved into a condo.. Five years ago I was asked by the president of the association to be on the board. It’s a real eye-opener.. I do my best to keep them honest and fair ;)


36 posted on 03/20/2012 12:09:16 PM PDT by DivineMomentsOfTruth ("Give me Liberty or I'll stand up and get it for myself!")
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To: albionin

yep


37 posted on 03/20/2012 12:11:22 PM PDT by F15Eagle (1 John 5:4-5, 4:15, 5:13; John 3:17-18, 6:69, 11:25, 14:6, 20:31; Rom10:8-11; 1 Tim 2:5; Titus 3:4-5)
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To: grundle

Nothing is worse than being ruled by petty fascists — except for being ruled by stupid petty fascists. Well-maintained flower gardens enhance property values.


38 posted on 03/20/2012 12:11:32 PM PDT by USFRIENDINVICTORIA
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To: DivineMomentsOfTruth
I am on the board of my 500+ unit townhome association, and it is truly a thankless job. For instance, one day last year a neighbor came up and railed at me because we spent money on a playground. Not ten minutes later his neighbor came up, and not knowing what just happened, railed at me even more bitterly because we didn't put in a bigger playground. Even still, as you pointed out, there are always a few people who get onto the board and become dictators. As far as they are concerned, if everyone’s property isn't exactly the same, the start yelling about the place being “a hodgepodge”. I think those people would be happier on an army base where everything is pretty much the same.
39 posted on 03/20/2012 12:12:55 PM PDT by PUGACHEV
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To: grundle
“It’s just not a happy place to live anymore for me,”

I don't like to admit it but I'm starting to feel the same way about my country.

40 posted on 03/20/2012 12:13:30 PM PDT by Bob Buchholz
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To: LilAngel

That which is expressly allowed is required.


41 posted on 03/20/2012 12:20:11 PM PDT by FreedomPoster (Islam delenda est)
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To: albionin
You see, that is why I live as far away from other people as is practical.

SPOT-ON! That nonsense about cars on blocks, etc.. is just that, nonsense. We purchased almost 50 acres of timber and plan on building right in the middle of it. I'll have a toilet and car tire planter if I so wish!

42 posted on 03/20/2012 12:21:16 PM PDT by TSgt (Suppose you were an idiot and suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.)
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To: DivineMomentsOfTruth

I had a friend in Las Vegas that lived in one of the big planned communities. You have probably all heard the stories of HOA Nazis doing insane crap like measuring weeds in a yard....

One morning my friend looks out his window to see a man hunched over on his driveway. Curious, he goes out to see what was up. It was an HOA Nazi literally measuring the single blade of grass growing up between the expansion joint in his concrete driveway.

He was then lectured by said Nazi, issued a ‘ticket’ and told to keep better care of his property in the future or face eviction.

Following the threat to the Nazi’s life, he received a $50 fine in the mail along with a ‘friendly’ suggestion that he consider relocating to another residence more in line with his ‘beliefs’.

I have my own horror stories with the only HOA I ever lived in. But that one takes the cake.


43 posted on 03/20/2012 12:23:48 PM PDT by Norm Lenhart
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To: grundle
It's all very pleasant, really. You'll come to love it! Meet me in The Green Dome for tea?


44 posted on 03/20/2012 12:24:38 PM PDT by prisoner6 (Right Wing Nuts bolt the Constitution together as the loose screws of the Left fall out!)
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To: Texan5

Agreed.

We wander on our 25 NH acres without interference from anyone. Although we do get some weird, or perhaps scared, looks from non resident passerbys while practicing with the rifles in the summer.

No way this side of hell I’d pay the owned house cost for what amounts to a rental apartment.


45 posted on 03/20/2012 12:27:18 PM PDT by benewton
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To: PUGACHEV

Yikes! I’m in a tiny development,, There are only 4 of us on the board.. People don’t even show up for the general meetings! But believe me,, We do have our share of aggravation so I feel for ya!


46 posted on 03/20/2012 12:28:09 PM PDT by DivineMomentsOfTruth ("Give me Liberty or I'll stand up and get it for myself!")
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To: grundle
The fundamental check that SHOULD be held against ALL HOAs is the legal concept of a homestead.

Without that, HOAs contracts are allowed to assume presumptive supremecy.

47 posted on 03/20/2012 12:28:27 PM PDT by Talisker (He who commands, must obey.)
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To: prisoner6

she’s not a number..


48 posted on 03/20/2012 12:31:23 PM PDT by RitchieAprile (How about those Devils and Rangers? 3 fights no waiting!)
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To: grundle
They’re charging the Portsmouth, New Hampshire homeowner $50 a day for being so petal pushy. That fine has reached close to $6,000, plus the board’s legal fees.

The next step is for the HOA to foreclose their lien and toss this woman out. They can then resell the unit to someone else. It all depends on what the contracts say, and how quickly the homeowner can undo the changes.

I'm not defending doing something in violation of rules one put their signature to (it appears that may have been the case here), but it is easy to see how these fines could be abused by board members just itching to get rid of a neighbor they don't like. As everyone else in this thread advised, read the fine print to see how easy it might be for the HOA to define a "violation".
49 posted on 03/20/2012 12:33:19 PM PDT by LostInBayport (When there are more people riding in the cart than there are pulling it, the cart stops moving...)
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To: Norm Lenhart

Wow.. People like that board member are on a power trip.. Do they not have anything better to do other than bully others? They look for trouble!

All neighborhoods have their drama.. and as peaceful as mine is.. I’d move to a farm with 50 acres in a heartbeat! I love people but most of them tick me off :)


50 posted on 03/20/2012 12:44:40 PM PDT by DivineMomentsOfTruth ("Give me Liberty or I'll stand up and get it for myself!")
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