A savvy car collector told Reddit how he outwitted his homeowners association (HOA) when they tried to get their residents to keep only one vehicle in the driveway.
The collector, u/Independent-Grape586, shared his story with the subreddit r/MaliciousCompliance, which collects stories of people who follow rules closely, even if they don’t actually follow the spirit in which those rules were intended. The original poster (OP) received over 19,100 upvotes and 1,100 comments for his post: “My HOA will learn that I absolutely abide by the letter of the law.”
The OP explains that all the vehicles he has – two cars, four motorcycles, and an RV – all drive and have insurance. Four people with a driver’s license also live in his household. While he typically stored all of these vehicles in his garage, u/Independent-Grape586 saw an opportunity when he saw that his HOA rules allowed “only one Class C vehicle” in each driveway.
There are typically three main classes of driver’s license in the United States: Class A, which allows the holder to drive large vehicles such as tractor-trailers, tank trucks, and pickup trucks; Class B, which allows drivers to use large buses and small dump trucks; and Class C, the most common type of license that applies to standard vehicles, as well as vehicles capable of carrying 16 or more passengers not already described in the other classes, according to the Department of Transportation.
However, the class designation refers to the license, not to the vehicle type. There is no such thing as a “Class C vehicle”, a fact the OP used to his advantage.
“I put 5 vehicles in my driveway,” wrote u/Independent-Grape586. “The letters came. I was able to dump them quickly after asking them the legal definition of a Class C vehicle. No fines paid.”
A year later, the HOA changed its rules to allow up to three vehicles per entrance. But the OP was undeterred and did some research. He discovered that the HOA did not cover public roads that had been ceded to the city – in what OP speculates was “an attempt to avoid having to pay the maintenance bill”.
“The HOA had no authority to stop people from parking on a public street. So I moved two vehicles in my very narrow street. One in front of my house and one right across the street from my neighbor’s house,” u/Independent-Grape586 wrote. “Now the only vehicles that could safely drive past my house were motorcycles and the one guy with a fancy car.
“It was wonderful. My street is a major artery in and out of the neighborhood. Lots of detours and back trips for people to get home or work,” he continued. “They are the ones who did the rest of the work for me. Complaints and calls to the HOA President led to another rule change vote. Now my driveway is open to any number of legally registered vehicles.
“It fits 9…I need more cars,” he added with a smiling face.
news week has published a number of stories about combat with HOAs. A man was fined after not moving his truck for two days as the HOA therefore deemed it unroadworthy. To avoid the fines, he set the truck to make “noisy as hell” and then parked in front of the HOA president’s house to start the engine to prove his truck was actually running.
Another HOA was criticized for telling a disabled war veteran to remove a wheelchair ramp. The reason? It wasn’t made from the “right color” of wood. After threatening the HOA with a lawsuit under the Americans with Disabilities Act, she dropped the lawsuit.
And in one instance, a HOA tried to force its residents to attend a mandatory flea market, with 10 percent of the proceeds going to the HOA. In addition, the HOA required people to sell “luxury goods.” Residents were also told to use Stripe, a credit card processing app, so the HOA could monitor profits – but that residents would be hooked for fees.
Redditors applauded u/Independent-Grape586 for fighting the HOA.
“Had a similar issue with my HOA. They have decided that I cannot park my truck and trailer on the street in front of my house. They sent me a penalty notice,” u/WinginVegas wrote. “I replied that I was legally parked and they couldn’t regulate the city’s streets. They stated that there was a state law that allowed HOA to manage roads in their community, but they skipped the part that applied only to gated communities where they did maintenance.
“I received a letter from the city’s parking director saying only the city can regulate parking and that a truck and trailer was legal for 72 hours and then had to be moved, but there were no distance rules on how far it was.” had to be moved. They quickly shut up,” they added.
“A town I used to live in got in trouble with that. They used license plate scanners for traffic enforcement and issued fines if the same license plate was recorded in consecutive scans longer than the allowed parking time. The court has ruled that since the system couldn’t prove the vehicle was in the same spot – just anywhere on the scanned road – it wasn’t valid evidence of a parking violation,” added u/archbish99.
“My favorite first step when dealing with HOAs is to look up their license/registration. This varies by location, but in my area the law requires HOAs to be registered annually. If they don’t, then nothing they’re requesting is legal,” u/Cakeeater suggested.
https://www.newsweek.com/collector-backed-parking-outside-despite-hoa-ban-class-c-vehicles-1744728 Collectors supported despite HOA ban on Class C vehicles for outdoor parking