A Bitter Battle: An Orange HOA vs. The Backyard Play Set
A four-year battle has been raging in a quiet Orange community, one that's ridden with threats and attorney involvement.
Cindy created a website, Evil Play Set, that chronicles the "spiteful war with neighbors we had called friends for more than 12 years." The Seppalas believe it's within their rights to have the play set in their backyard, and have hired an attorney to help defend them.
There are no rules in our CC&Rs addressing play sets specifically, and the closest thing says only that recreational equipment cannot be placed in the front yards or front elevations of lots. Other play sets have been installed in the past few years, some of which have been visible from the street and neighboring homes. All our board can say is that ours is "more visible" and "bigger", but neither of these variables are mentioned anywhere in our rules. They also claim this is a "building" or a "structure", but all the standard definitions of real estate and architectural terms (this whole fiasco is based on the "architecture" portion of our CC&Rs, so these are the key definitions) say otherwise. Further, in over 30 years of history, no item not attached to a house or to the ground has EVER been submitted to the architecture committee for approval, and no action has been documented against any such item.
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