For some reason, millions of people live under the iron fists of their local Homeowners Association (HOA), which can dictate everything from the color of their house to the length of their grass. Presumably, people who want to live in an HOA are a little tightly wound themselves, but from amongst them, there is always one Supreme Karen.
The person who complains the most, keeps the pettiest agendas, and monitors their neighbors’ every move, eventually controls the whole place. This picture circulating on Reddit is pretty much an entire tale about this person in a single image.
The photo was first posted by u/killHACKS, on r/F-ckYouKaren and r/Facepalm subreddits. It shows a letter that was typed, printed, and protected by plastic so it would meet the eyes of the Karen it was addressed to. The letter is from a dad to whoever it is that reported his kids’ tree fort and got it taken down—all in compliance with the HOA’s dictates.
“Dear Anonymous Passerby,” it begins. “Don’t worry, you’re safe now! Your act of casual cruelty was successful. The complaint you lodged against the HOA was heard. They had me take down the small tree fort that I built on this location with my sons during the pandemic.”
“No longer will its presence offend your walk past my house,” it continues. “Please enjoy your stroll free from the sound of my children’s play and laughter. They are safely back inside now, watching television I’m sure.”
“Enjoy the unobstructed view of my backyard. I will try to keep it up to code,” it bitterly concludes.
Naturally, the letter produced a lot of anecdotal horror stories about HOAs, but also on strategies for triumphing over them. One of the main takeaways from what I’ve read is that a lot of people who live in HOAs don’t bother to participate in the actual rule-making process. Redditor eskimoexplosion shared their triumph over the HOA board:
I started participating in my communities’ HOA with three of my neighbors after some weird architecture rules they tried to implement(they wanted us to all paint our fences dark brown for some reason). Come to find out, out of the hundred or so residences only about eight people show up to each meeting making us a good third of the votes.
Of those eight two of them were fairly reasonable and one guy proclaims himself a libertarian and votes every new rule down. With our voting power, our fences can now be whatever color, the pool is getting a waterslide, and we made sure instead of making additions to the clubhouse at the pool no one uses the HOA fee now includes sewer and trash in exchange for an additional $5 a month.
Plus we upset the brown fence Karen’s so much they stopped showing up to meetings. If you can’t beat em join em.
You never know what you can get done just by showing up. Maybe that Dad should join his HOA board and make having a tree fort obligatory. A fort for every yard!