Governor urges HOA reform. One Colorado lawmaker wonders what took him so long.

State Rep. Titone says some problems could have been addressed by vetoed 2019 bill

By: - August 18, 2023 4:59 pm

Multifamily residences are seen on 11th Avenue in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Denver on June 9, 2023. (Quentin Young/Colorado Newsline)

A Colorado lawmaker who has long advocated reform is skeptical about Gov. Jared Polis’ support of new homeowners associations solutions based on how previous HOA legislation has gone over with him.

State Rep. Brianna Titone told Newsline she is surprised to see the Democratic governor sounding the alarm on issues with HOAs four years after he vetoed a Titone-sponsored bill that would have extended a licensing program for HOA managers. She gets emails almost daily from someone experiencing an issue with their HOA, she said. 

“I wish that people had paid attention and listened to the concerns then, because we were trying to stop a lot of these problems,” the Arvada Democrat said. “Honestly, I think that a lot of these issues that have been exacerbated in the last few years are due to the fact that manager licensing was terminated — and that was terminated on the governor’s veto of my bill.”


Titone said she thinks problems with HOAs are only starting to get attention now that enough people are talking about them. In response to reporting from The Colorado Sun on HOA foreclosures, Polis’ team sent out a press release stating he and several lawmakers, including Titone, were alarmed by recent challenges people are experiencing with HOAs. But as a former HOA president, Titone said it’s always been top of mind for her. 

“It’s pretty disappointing to me that I’ve been doing this work since I’ve been in the Legislature, and five years into it, now people are starting to see that there’s value in trying to solve some of these problems,” Titone said. “I wish that people had paid attention and listened to the concerns, because we were trying to stop a lot of these problems.”

I want to see some results and some thoughtful consideration to solve some of these problems, because the biggest problem we have is that HOA boards answer to nobody but a lawsuit.

– State Rep. Brianna Titone

The news release from Polis said he is committed to creating a home for every Colorado budget and that he intends to work toward a solution alongside the Legislature.

“Burdensome HOA policies shouldn’t be so restrictive that they prohibit things like common sense fire mitigation and water conservation strategies for homes, force people from a home they love over untrimmed grass, or drain a family or individual of their financial savings,” Polis said in a statement. “These recent accounts are heartbreaking and deeply troubling. I continue to urge HOAs to be more flexible — clearly, there is more work to do with the legislature and local communities to enhance the rights of property owners and protect people from being ripped off.”

Rep. Naquetta Ricks was another one of the state lawmakers named in the release.

“I’m proud to have championed a law that took on HOAs and foreclosures,” the Aurora Democrat said in a statement. “Every day Coloradans are losing their homes, equity and are seeing their credit scores irreparably damaged by foreclosure forced by HOAs. It’s clear there’s more work to do to ensure that predatory practices aren’t pushing people out of their homes they’ve worked so hard for.”

Titone said she is hopeful that the HOA task force she helped establish last session will lead to collaborative legislative solutions in the next session. She said since the governor’s office sent out a press release saying the state needs to be better with HOAs, she plans to hold him to that.

“I want to see some results and some thoughtful consideration to solve some of these problems, because the biggest problem we have is that HOA boards answer to nobody but a lawsuit,” Titone said.

The Sun found that since 2018, at least 100 properties that due to HOA infractions were foreclosed on through court proceedings sold for $60,000 or less. Titone said she doesn’t know what the best solution is when it comes to selling foreclosed properties at a fraction their value. 

“That person should still get that money for that house, because they may have lived there a long time, and they may be financially struggling,” Titone said. “Now if you leave them with nothing, then we wonder why we have a homeless problem.”

The bill creating a task force “to examine issues affecting certain homeowners’ rights” is the latest HOA-related action the Legislature has taken. It will result in a report outlining the task force’s conclusions. A bill from the 2022 session protects homeowner rights when it comes to delinquent HOA fees, adding additional steps an HOA board needs to go through before it can foreclose. 


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Lindsey Toomer
Lindsey Toomer

Lindsey Toomer covers politics, social justice and other stories for Newsline. She formerly reported on city government at the Denver Gazette and on Colorado mountain town government, education and environment at the Summit Daily News.