Eagle Crest Owners - Gripes

High HOA Dues - For what?

HOA Dues at Eagle Crest Resort, posted April, 2010

So, we are assuming you received your 2010 1st quarter HOA dues bill. You probably saw an increase. Isn't it interesting that the resort management has laid off dozens and dozens of staff and cut back services, and still Eagle Crest owners are paying more for the supposed services. Most, if not all of us, are paying well over $1,000 every three months. There are hundreds and hundreds of units on Eagle Crest Resort with each paying in excess of $4,000 a year. You do the math.

By contrast, Sunriver owners pay a few hundred dollars a quarter. Makes you wonder doesn't it. Is it possible that Eagle Crest owners are covering all the overhead for the resort, leaving the resort management to rake in the profit? We don't think the community boards have any power to change anything. The boards cannot, as far as we know, get competitive bids for the services in the community budgets. Why do you think that is?

Most of us love Eagle Crest Resort and love our vacation homes. We are just disgusted with the financial mechinations. It reminds us of the Wall Street fiasco and our nation's current economic mess.

Eagle Crest Resort is located in Redmond, Oregon...not to be confused with the Eagle Crest of Michigan, Alaska, California, and Canada.

Results of the Eagle Crest Owner protests recorded below: SUCCESS! Eagle Crest management backed down big-time.

After Eagle Crest Owners showed up at their respective Community Board Meetings and expressed their dismay over the NEW Sports Center Fees (on top of the amount paid by Eagle Crest Owners for sports centers in their HOA budgets, guess what?

The issue just disappeared, never to be heard about again after February 2009.

Unofficial Minutes: Ridge at Eagle Crest Owners Association Board Meeting held February 20, 2009

The meeting was held in a conference room at the administrative offices where the presence of 60 owners seemed unanticipated with standing room only for half of the visitors. Both resident and non-resident owners attended the meeting. Before the official meeting began, the board heard from a number of resident owners who expressed concerns about resident owner issues. Lee Henrich (President) asked that owner discussions be closed in order for the official meeting to begin, saying he thought "most owners are here about the sports center item and would leave after that agenda item". One owner responded that most owners are here because of the ever increasing HOA dues in addition to the sports center policy issue, and if the meeting were held on a Saturday there would be about 200 owners attending. Board members and Jeld-Wen staff discussed considering the possibility of holding Saturday meetings. Some of the logistics to changing the meeting would involve changing location to a bigger venue and having Jeld-Wen management and employees present on a non-work day, both of which may require an additional fee.

Also clarified at the meeting was the different entities that have input and decision making abilities in regards to policy. Members on this board at this meeting were from the Ridge at EC Owners Association. These board members are elected by and represent home owners on The Ridge side (the upper side of the resort across the highway). The term Eagle Crest Master's Association (ECMA) is used for the association/board that is the umbrella for all of the other homeowners/associations on The Resort side (the side that the hotel is on). The ECMA owns and has jurisdiction over the outdoor pool and sports center on the Resort side. They are the decision making body for policy changes effecting the Resort side of Eagle Crest. Jeld-Wen owns the two sports centers/pools on The Ridge side and is the decision making body for those. The Ridge at Eagle Crest Owners Association does not have jurisdiction over the Ridge Sports centers. However, they do choose whether or not to approve the budget (including sports center dues line item) proposed to them by Jeld-Wen. The Ridge Association does have jurisdiction over enforcing policy for the Ridge side of Eagle Crest.

Many of the owners present voiced their concerns about high HOA dues, the financial difficulties many owners now faced, and asked for a more robust and transparent budgeting process (i.e. zero based budgeting). Many of these owners expressed their love of Eagle Crest Resort and stated that they chose to buy property at Eagle Crest for a combination of reasons including affordability (at the time they bought). One owner's comment was that she felt subjected to a "bait and switch" tactic with the changes in policy and ever increasing dues. Many owners expressed their hope that Jeld-Wen management would, in the future, bring more transparency and factual communication to issues and processes involving owner interests.

Lee Henrich said that a finance committee was being formed. When asked whether the finance committee would use zero based budgeting and other due-diligence tools, Mr. Henrich replied that he did not know at this time. Todd Samples stated that the services charged by Jeld-Wen are at cost (however, he did not define "cost" and whether it included allocated general overhead in addition to actual direct costs); The topic of soliciting multiple bids for services was addressed (i.e.. painting, septic, deck sealing, etc.) Multiple bids (usually 2) were solicited on a basic level. In most cases, those companies with a relationship and past history with Eagle Crest were awarded the bid after being asked to adjust their original bid some to be more competitive. Samples said, later, that they did not put outside services such as landscaping because Jeld-Wen has their own landscaping employees. Moreover, Mr. Samples stated that no bonuses or raises would be paid to Jeld-Wen staff for 2009. Mr. Henrich called an end to open discussion.

Agenda items:

A. Financial Report: Jeld-Wen staff reported on insurance claims, dues receivable, and the 2008 reserve expense variance from budget. The board approved the report. B. Budget Amendment: Jeld-Wen staff proposed minor changes to the neighborhood budgets. The board approved the changes.

C. 2009 Reserve Expenses: Jeld-Wen staff reported on 2008 reserve expenses and the board approved the report.

D. ARC Report: Rick Pare reported on construction status and enforcement.

E. Operations: Jeld-Wen staff reported on miscellaneous items including fine collections. Then Todd Samples outlined the status of the Sports Center policy changes. Samples said that the Eagle Crest Master Association has rescinded the policy change for the time being, that a committee will be formed to discuss the issues and inequities of the current policy. Mr. Samples did not definitively state what the factual issues and inequities were that necessitated change. The committee is to be made up of a cross sampling of Eagle Crest owners. Eagle Crest management is now taking requests from those interested in being on this committee. A final policy will be forthcoming after the committees work. Mr. Samples went on to say that there is another owners website on the Internet (other than the Jeld-Wen controlled website), and that many of the postings there were "nonsense" and "uniformed". At that point, an owner said to Mr. Samples that he (Samples) was at fault if there were inaccuracies out there because Mr. Samples had not done a good job of factually communicating nor proving the necessity of changing the sports center policy in advance of actually changing the policy. At some point during the discussion Todd Samples admitted that management had fallen short as far as communicating with owners and the board about policy changes.

F. Committee Member Appointments: The board finalized committee member appointments for committees (other than the sports center).

G. Speed Limit Violations: The board went to closed executive session in order to preserve privacy over violations. Adjourned.

There continues to be questions that need to be answered and work to be done in regards to policy and financial responsibility and accountability. However, Jeld-Wen management and the Ridge homeowner's association board voiced their intent to be cooperative and sensitive to issues facing homeowners, especially those of the financial nature. They have been urged (by owners) to look for ways to cut operational and maintained costs, and to be of the mindset that owners expect conservative action to be taken in regards to dues and policy. As of now we can believe that the potential is there to work between management, boards, and homeowners to address issues facing all involved at eagle crest. we encourage everyone to continue to communicate their concerns with their Association board members and management . We hope that the spirit of cooperation and transparency that was conveyed by Jeld-Wen general manager Todd Samples at the recent board meeting will come to fruition. Remember that a committee is being formed and is looking for volunteers to address issues surrounding the sports center. You can request to be on this committee by contacting General Manager Todd Samples at todds@jeld-wencommunities.com

posted 01/09/2009     Scheduled Board Meetings

Eagle Crest Ridge Owners Association (RECOA):   9AM   February 20, 2009   Eagle Crest administrative offices

Eagle Crest Master Association (ECMA   10AM  February 13, 2009   Eagle Crest administrative offices

Note: We understand that owners have no voice at ECMA meetings and cannot speak.  We are unsure whether owners can even attend the meeting.   ECMA is the board who passed the new Sports Center policy and then temporarily rescinded it.

This just in... It is only rescinded for now; may not be the end of it - 01/06/2008

To all concerned owners,

Let me first thank all of you who have responded with your concerns about the recent changes made to the Sports Center Policy. After careful consideration of all input received we are rescinding the policy change and notice that was mailed out to all Ridge owners with your dues statement. We have also been in contact with the ECMA Board of Directors and we anticipate, unofficially, that they will vote to rescind their policy change as well. We anticipate official approval from ECMA in the near future.

Todd Samples
General Manager
Eagle Crest Resort

From Lee Henrich RECOA 1/06/2009

I had a conversation with Todd Samples this afternoon and the new policy will be rescinded for now until both the Eagle Crest and Eagle Ridge Boards can review the problems.

Lee Henrich

Read this article about Eagle Crest guest fees and then act!

New Policy

An access guest fee of $5 per day per person will be charged; or $20 per person per week.

Pre-purchase of Guest Passes:   Owners must pre-purchase guest passes online in advance.   Passes will not be sold at the Sports Centers unless the guest is accompanied by an Eagle Crest Owner.

Why the Change

Official reasons:   (1)  Increase availability to Eagle Crest owners;   (2)   reduce wear and tear;   (3)  reduce operational costs

Questions you should ask yourself about Eagle Crest sports center guest fees :

Are the official reasons for the change credible?
Take a look at your HOA dues and the 2009 budget. For example: Ridge Owners will pay $683,445 in HOA dues to fund the Ridge Sports Center in 2009.   With that amount of funding, a new sports center could be built every two years.   Certainly one would expect that $683,445 per year would be sufficient to fund all maintenance and operational costs, which we suppose is staffing costs.  Speaking of staffing costs, we have heard of large staff reductions and hours cutbacks; how could staffing costs be increasing in this economy?

Will guests of Eagle Crest Management be charged?
There has been no mention of fees to hotel guests or guests of townhouses rented by Eagle Crest Management.   If they do not charge an equal fee to those guests, then Eagle Crest Owners will be subsidizing those rentals.

Who gets the money?
Eagle Crest Management will keep the sports center guest fees.   The sports center guest fees WILL NOT be deposited with the homeowner associations.   Without Association custody of the money, the income may not be used to offset HOA budgets.   Most likely, the money will just be Eagle Crest Management profit.   Some Eagle Crest Owners believe the money should go directly to the homeowner associations to reduce HOA dues.

What if I rent my property?
Many Eagle Crest Owners rent their vacation homes to defray some of the costs of ownership, such as high HOA dues.  You must absorb or pass along the fees to your guests.   For an average rental of 3 nights for 6 persons, the cost will be $90.   In many cases, it will be more convenient (if not cheaper) for potential paying guests to rent directly from Eagle Crest Management. Short notice rentals will be impossible.  Do you think all this is just coincidence?

Thinking of selling your property?   Who is going to buy it when it cannot be rented except through the resort rental pool?

Who benefits?
You must make up your own mind as to whether this policy change is in the interests of Eagle Crest Owners or Eagle Crest Management (Jeld-Wen).   With new fees and ever increasing HOA dues (several times higher than SunRiver), it is difficult for some to believe our Owner Association Boards are fulfilling their duties to act in the interests of Eagle Crest Owners.

Who is responsible?   Primarily, the Eagle Crest Master Association

Eagle Crest Management, Inc.

What can be done?

What you can do: contact 3 other owners about this issue and direct them to the protest websites.

Let your opinion be known. Contact your Owner Association board members and/or the Eagle Crest Master Association listed above and/or Eagle Crest Management.

Resistance to the Sports Center Guest Fee Policy is being organized by HOMEOWNERS at this site:  http://www.eaglecrestowner.com/

Measures being considered: protest at next board meeting, boycott of HOA dues, contact with the Media, Board recall, a potential class action lawsuit - litigation issues: restraint of trade, breach of fiduciary responsibility by board of directors.

Volunteers: If you know of an owner who is an attorney, we need legal advice.   A media person is also needed.

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