Frisco homeowner ordered to repaint pink mailbox

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by STEVE STOLER

WFAA

Posted on December 14, 2012 at 8:22 PM

Updated Friday, Dec 14 at 8:23 PM

FRISCO – A Frisco homeowner says her neighborhood association has gone too far, sending her numerous letters about violations, placing a lien on her home, and now, telling her she can't paint her mailbox pink for breast cancer awareness. 

But HOA leaders say they have their reasons.

Katherine Gillette says she painted her mailbox pink after two aunts and a dear friend were diagnosed with cancer. She also shaved her head. 

"And it wasn't a week before the letters started coming in," said Gillette.

The Plantation Resort 2 HOA ordered the Gillettes to repaint their mailbox in black, saying pink was not an approved color. 

"I was very angry about this, certainly not to be a rebel," said Gillette. "It's for a cause. People are dying."

The HOA cited the Gillettes for a long list of other violations, from a hedge that was too high to gate and fence repairs. They haven't paid dues since July, citing financial hardship. They owe the association more than $1,600 in dues, fees and fines. 

So the HOA placed a lien on their house. 

Judd Austin, a Dallas attorney who represents associations, says the rules are there for a reason -- to protect and maintain property values. 

"Our best homeowner is a homeowner that has read everything that has been given to them, so they can make an informed decision and say I'm ok with these rules, I'm ok with these regulations and I agree to abide by them," said Austin.

The Plantation Resort 2 HOA sent this written statement: 

"The board empathizes with our neighbor’s desire to promote breast cancer awareness and do not aim to discredit the worthy cause, which is obviously very close to their hearts. We are only exercising our responsibility to all of the homeowners, which is to ensure the association is being run smoothly and fairly for the benefit of all. In this case, the paint color of the mailbox is outside the guidelines set forth by the board and homeowners."

But, Gillette is defiant. While she’d like to work out a payment plan with her HOA, she vows not to take the mailbox down or change its color.

 

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