Thinking of buying or renting an apartment or townhouse in Penn Valley (also considered Narberth) at the Oak Hill Estates and Terraces (“Oakhill“)? You might want to think long and hard and look elsewhere.
Since I wrote this Blog, I have been subjected to further retaliation and attempted bullying and intereferenced into my personal affairs. Furthermore, I received a slew of so called “anonymous” comments which I traced by IP address to the same people I was writing about, and hence, they were not published. These comments, in the same gutless manner management operates, did not address the issues but were personal attacks against myself. IF YOU PLAN ON MOVING HERE, THINK ABOUT WHAT YOU ARE GETING YOURSELF INTO.
While prices may abnormally low here (where I currently reside), that is because things are abnormal (in a bad-way) here. We all know that the closer and more involved one is with one’s neighbors, the more vulnerable one becomes to the eccentricities and problems of those neighbors. Condominiums (a legal way of owning property) which are apartments (even the townhouses here have either an upstairs or downstairs neighbor as well as people on each side of a common wall) carry with them a great risk of entanglement with people one would not wish to be “entangled” with. Oakhill is the best example (worst place) I have witnessed (in 25 years of representing condominium associations and property management companies) of a place where those entanglements are so bad they should be avoided at all costs. I have lived here between 5 to 6 years and my experience and observations are shocking, disturbing and should serve as a warning to prospective purchasers and renters.
Let emphatically state, as an initial comment, that Rules, and behaviour and social interaction, should always be geared to be moral, ethical, and compassionate. When behaviour, whether or not codified in Rules, rums afoul of morality, compassion, and ethics, that society is sick. The organization that is the Oakhill condominium is sick.
If ethics and morality are not your concern, then the there are other reasons which should nonetheless make you think twice about Oakhill. The financial costs you will pay, the way you (and children) will be treated (included selective and malicious targeting of people with the “Rules”) and other reasons make living at Oakhill far less desirable then it appears.
For example, a condominium owner not only has to pay the initial costs of purchasing a home along with taxes and utilities, but you have to pay condominium dues and fees (which can be very high) and includes such things as gardening of common areas, salaries of people (whom you may prefer to be far far away from yourself and your family), air conditioning of hallways, etc. Even worse, your ability to use and enjoy your home becomes subject to the whims, rules, and threats of the association, property managers, and other employees and officials and quasi-officials. There is even a “pool rules” committee.
I have witnessed, on all too many occasions, expensive landscaping during the day, and at night the deers feasting on and destroying that landscaping [this is a deer infested area]. This happens over and over and management is death to complaints about this and other facts. Some actions have been so inexplicable that kickbacks were the only logical explanation I have ever been able to determine, although I have no evidence of such has been seen (it rarely is). Rules get selectively enforced against some people, while other members of “cliques” have been given a free hand to, for example, to allow their pets to defecate on public walkways and violate the same rules others are threatened with fines and other penalties.
When I moved in here, there was a registered sex offender on the floor above me (while he moved recently, there appear to be others who seem to belong on that list and, in fact, three Tier One offenders live in this zip code). A high placed official/employee in the employment of the association committed assault on a resident, among other things. The use of illegal drugs proliferates here, and one resident was observed today to be seen trying to “score” some illegal drugs. That was ignored, while an “out of favor” resident was yelled at for eating blueberries too close to the swimming pool.
I was yelled at for helping a lifeguard clean leaves from the pool last August. It seems two of the “pool clique” members wanted to swim laps, and it being the end of the summer (and a windy day) leaves were blowing into the pool. The lap swimmers kept yelling at the young lifeguard until she started to cry, at which point I happily volunteered to help her clean while I was floating around on my raft. The next day, I was contacted by the management as though I had been discovered selling crack and told I was not permitted to clean leaves from the pool. That same clique member yelled at me twice today because I wanted to swim from the deep end to the shallow end, and she was swimming laps across the entire pool and my path intersected her path (even though I was far away from her and going to great pains to avoid her lap swimming).
Yesterday, another resident (who considers me to be a friend) began an anti-China anti-Black tirade wherein he also accused President Obama (and his wife) of being a Muslim terrorists. Other people, who mistakenly consider me to be sympathetic to their sentiments (they no longer make that mistake) have made severely rascist, mysognystic, and/or homo-phobic statements, [they used hate speech]. One woman was so “troublesome” that, on the day I moved in, when she started ranting about the rules, my (then) nine year old son reckognized that “There is something wrong with that lady.”
Aside from the waste of exorbitant management fees (which are only going to get higher especially after I and others sue the association and its officers) there is something sick about this society of “main-line want to be’s.”
Don’t get me wrong in that there are some very nice people here, some of whom I have known for a very long time. And the landlords who own my unit are wonderful people. But this small minority is far overshadowed by mean spirited and ignorant people living here. To many of the people who reside here are an odd bunch of outcasts. Others have nothing doing in their life except to manufacture delusions of rules and then to try to make other people (other residents) miserable. These people are insensitive, at best, and sadistic, at worst, when dealing with others.
Part of the problem stems from the fact that, while most owners greedily want to maximize their real estate prices, and thus allow the owners of units to rent their apartments, the owners really don’t like the more transient, generally younger tenants. Furthermore, since many owners are senior citizens, or approaching (to their dismay) that age, they really don’t like children, or the activities that children engage in.
An excellent example of the renter owner issue is the rule that prohibits renters from owning a dog, while owners are free to have one. These same people, who are so quick to run screaming about alleged “rules violations” by non-owners, can be seen daily walking their dogs in front of signs prohibiting dog walking on the manicured lawns.
An example of the mistreatment of children (and the families who struggle to raise them) is exhibited by the behaviour of full grown (and then some) adults at the swimming pool. Many of the nasty residents will read their books in the middle of the swimming pool ( and then complain if some innocent child accidentally splashes them while similarly enjoying the pool. Things are so bad that the life-guards used to constantly quit and refuse to work at this site. Now, I believe, they are paid “combat” pay to work here.
I have spent much of my 25 year career representing condominium associations and property management associations, many of which were far more significant than here at Oakwood. Nonetheless, the ignorant arrogant meanness which certain residents, quasi-officials, and others misstate the rules and other issues relating to condominiums causes a tremendous waste of money, failure to take constructive steps to reduce costs while increasing quality of life, etc.
Much of this mean spirited behaviour comes from the fact that many of the people here are embittered with their own status in life (socially, career, etc.) Many are single and have little prospect of changing that fact given the “ugliness” in their lives and the ugliness of their behaviour.
So, before buying here, consider the non-economic costs of living here, as well as the future economic costs. When people like me (who are experienced lawyers) are forced to litigate (which is coming shortly), condominium association dues go up as the costs of defense can easily enter six figures, and I am but one of many residents who intend to litigate. Even if covered by insurance, such litigation makes the cost of insurance in the future prohibitive or even impossible to obtain. The costs of dues can also depress resale prices.
Query, Why did one of the longest property managers quit with no notice and seeming extreme animosity towards Oakhill?
Query, Why do life guards quit constantly, and why are they paid more to work at Oakhill then at other residences?
Query, Why are subordinate staff, who are good people, often heard cursing upper management?
Query, Why have more than a dozen people approached me about suing Oakhill?
Query, Why did maintenance head, Mickey McDermet (who I may have a lot more to say about) complaint that I was helping a life guard clean leaves out of the swimming pool when that lifeguard was being screamed at by two residents because the wind was blowing the leaves into the pool at the end of summer [a windy day when the leaves had already begun to fall] to the point that the lifeguard began to cry?