Homeowners in Castle Rock's Latigo neighborhood made their voices heard in a meeting over the Homeowner's Association board's new budget proposal.
We expect to know on Monday whether the community will move forward withor if they'll have to go back to the drawing board. Saturday's meeting saw homeowners asking questions like, "why did this happen?" "Am I double insured?" And "what would happen if the HOA defaults on this policy?"
"It's been really nice living there," said Tomaz Romero.
Romero has been living at Latigo for almost 20 years, but he's never seen his HOA fees so high.
"We came in at $85 a month," said Romero.
Earlier this month, residents vetoed a budget proposal that would have increased their monthly HOA dues from $300 to $820.
"That takes a little bit off the table," said Romero.
The reason why: a 600% increase in the community's insurance premium, that its broker attributes to recent devastating wildfires eroding the reinsurance market.
Saturday, a tense HOA board meeting saw neighbors voting on the latest proposal: a $2,500 special assessment, to be paid at the start of 2024, or across 5 months, in addition to continued $300 monthly payments.
"Basically for the first five months we will still pay the $820 of the original budget, but only to kick the can past March," said Latigo homeowner Sibyl Swope.
Swope voted to veto that plan, while others wanted to approve it.
"I voted to approve it because we have no money in the account and it has to be paid. We should pay our bills," said Romero.
But with several proxy votes to count, the result is too close to call just yet.
If the plan is vetoed, payments will stay at $300 a month unless a new budget is agreed upon. It could mean a default on the new insurance policy.
Homeowners, who are required to self-insure their homes from the walls in, are also asking if they've been double paying for that coverage and if bylaws may need to be amended.
"We still have coverage questions. Are we fully covered? Are we double covered?" Swope asked.
Many left the meeting with more questions than answers.
"We're gonna have future meetings. We gotta clean this mess up, it's a big mess," said Romero.
The increasing cost of insurance behind the "mess" is not just a Latigo problem. After our initial story aired, CBS News Colorado heard from communities across Colorado who say they're dealing with the same thing.
for more features.