DeSoto Supervisors Back Help For Homeowners

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(Southaven, MS) When the developer of an upscale subdivision went bust, a bank came in and wanted to build smaller homes on smaller lots in Sonny Balducci’s neighborhood.

All Balducci could do was complain. He and other homeowners had little recourse.

But now DeSoto Supervisors are getting involved.

They’re throwing support behind a bill to give homeowner’s associations more authority in Mississippi.

”Statewide, there’s no standard there’s no statewide laws that regulate Homeowner’s Associations and it’s left a lot of them out in the cold,” explained Supervisor Mark Gardner, who says it’s time to lend a little muscle to homeowner’s groups.

Supervisors say they’re particularly concerned about developers that cut the size of their lots in the middle of development, changing the character of a neighborhood.

They’re also concerned about who maintains common areas.

Take the battle over the dried-up lake a few years ago at Olive Branch’s Plantation subdivision.

Homeowners couldn’t do much about the mud pit in their backyards.

”Sometimes homeowner’s associations are left holding the bag. They have no enforcement authority and they have some covenants and regulations but no way of enforcing those,” said Gardner.

Supervisors say the bill could be a hard-sell in the legislature, but DeSoto County and other big population centers need it.

”It’s not isolated to DeSoto County. It certainly affects the high-growth counties”.

And Gardner said he believes it could eventually touch every county in Mississippi.