The internet is defending a Redditor who claimed they fought the Homeowners Association (HOA) in their neighborhood for demanding the demolition of a ramp for a disabled neighbor.
The Redditor shared their story Wednesday in Reddit’s “Am I The A**hole” forum under the username u/Commercial_Ad_995. The post has already received more than 20,000 votes.
According to the post, the Redditor is a housing contractor, so their neighbor’s sister asked if they could build a ramp for her brother to use to get in and out of the house. The Redditor’s neighbor is a war veteran who suffered a head injury and lost his leg while serving.
After the Redditor received the proper building permit, they tried to contact the HOA; however, the HOA did not answer their calls or emails.
After waiting three weeks for a response, the Redditor said, “F*** I’m building the ramp, I don’t care about their specs.”
“During this entire time, whenever he had to enter or leave the house, 2 people had to carry his wheelchair up or down,” the Redditor explained. “To be [sic] a pain in the ass, damn ridiculous.”
About halfway through the construction of the driveway, the HOA sent a letter claiming that the wood used to build the driveway was not the right color and thus did not meet the HOA’s specifications. The Redditor ignored the letter and moved on with the project.
The HOA reached out again after construction was completed, demanding that Redditor and their neighbor deconstruct the driveway for its “aesthetics.” This sent the Redditor into a fit of rage.
Discussing the ramp at an HOA meeting, the Redditor yelled, “SHUT G**DAMN MOUTH, THAT MAN HAS SAVE HIS LEGS IN THE SEA FOR US. [LIFE] HARDER you should all be ashamed of yourselves!”
In addition, the Redditor told the HOA that it violated the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) and threatened to take it to court, prompting the HOA to drop the matter.
News week contacted you/Commercial_Ad_995 for comment.
By stating that the HOA “violated the ADA,” the Redditor was likely referring to “reasonable adjustments” or “reasonable changes,” which housing providers are required by law to make under the Federal Fair Housing Act (FFHA), as well as the ADA.
“Reasonable accommodation is a change, exception, or modification to a rule, policy, practice, or service that may be necessary for a person with disabilities to have equal opportunity to use and enjoy a home, including public and communal areas…” said the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
HUD also explained that the FFHA defines a reasonable change as: “a structural change made to existing buildings, which are occupied or occupied by a person with disabilities, to allow that person the full enjoyment of the buildings.”
“Examples include installing a ramp in a building, lowering the entry threshold of a unit, or installing grab bars in a bathroom,” continues HUD.
(For more detailed information about reasonable accommodations and reasonable accommodations, click here.)
Commentators were quick to express support for the Redditor, who they believe was right to fight the HOA over the ramp.
“New. [not the a**hole]. In fact, I would consult a lawyer about this. There are certain things that transcend the authority of a HOA, even though they often think they are the supreme rulers,” u/badfader said.
“NTA. Thanks for standing up for your neighbor. My husband is also a disabled vet who needs a ramp to get in/out of the house,” said u/Cofrij. “Fortunately, our HOA reacted very differently and protected us from other neighbors who complained. FIGHT THEM TILL THE END!”
“ON [original poster] said exactly what needed to be said. What they wanted is disgusting. To put “aesthetics” above the needs of a disabled person, let alone a veteran. I hope every HOA member on that HOA board steps on multiple legos. Every day,” added u/Autumn988. “NTA, but you are the Hero.”