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Norwalk co-op’s internal controversy hits the courts

NORWALK, Conn. — While some shareholders of a troubled Norwalk housing cooperative see the place as being a shambles and are thankful for a chance to sell, others say the complex is being fixed up – and they have filed a lawsuit to stop the transactions.

The atmosphere at the 164-unit Dreamy Hollow co-op, located at 41 Wolfpit Ave., is “freaky deaky,” according to one resident, and a lot of people are “disgusted” and not talking to each other, Dreamy Hollow President Brien McMahon said. Some people feel that their own money has been turned against them, as a portion of their common charges have gone to fund the lawsuit that is stopping them from moving on with their lives. Others, including 35-plus-year resident Laila Andreson, say the investment company attempting to buy shares in the complex just wants to buy the valuable 19 acres to turn it into an “Avalon-type” development – although zoning regulations would prevent a larger development from being built.

McMahon has been president of the Board throughout this crisis, which, for many residents, began in July when they received a letter from the Board stating that the cooperative was in financial trouble and giving them three, including selling their shares to an investor. But the Board has changed around him, as five of eight members were voted off last fall, creating a Board that opposes what some describe as a “hostile takeover” of the complex by Belpointe Capital, a deal arranged by Exit Partners Reality. The new Board filed a lawsuit Feb. 18; one result is that they are still “in,” as a temporary restraining order cancelled an attempt to elect yet another board.

One of many deteriorated front steps at Dreamy Hollow.

One of many deteriorated front steps at Dreamy Hollow.

The lawsuit is “demonstrably false,” “defamatory” and an “attempt to delay” the transactions, said Exit Partners Reality President Frank Farricker, the Greenwich Democratic Town Committee chairman and redeveloper of Norwalk’s Globe Theater, who is named as a defendant along with the members of the Belpointe Capital, Norpost Properties and Genevieve Salvatore, an attorney convicted of mail fraud currently serving time in federal prison.

The lawsuit, attached below, alleges that Farricker, Salvatore and Brandon Lacoff of Belpointe Capital knowingly misled the cooperative and its shareholders in an effort to coerce shareholders into selling their shares at reduced prices. Farricker discouraged other bidders by providing false information, misrepresenting the value of the capital stock, and misled Dreamy Hollow, the lawsuit states. A status conference is scheduled for March 30.

Farricker’s emailed statement, sent to NoN on Sunday:

“The Dreamy Hollow Cooperative has a very hard 50+ year existence. My involvement with Dreamy Hollow began only last May, so I do not think that any rancor is, or should, be in any way about me, or my company, as there is a longstanding and documented history of financial and social issues plaguing its operation, current issues being no different.

“To be clear, there is not an issue at play of the ‘sale’ of Dreamy Hollow. The law requires that the shareholders individually agree to sell their shares. As of today, 108 individual unit holders, including three in the past week, have chosen of their own free will to execute contracts to sell their shares in the Corporation, including a vast majority who consulted competent local attorneys in order to receive their advice to sign. Of the balance of the units not in contract, five are in extended foreclosure proceedings against the corporation for unpaid common charges and are in no position to sell their units or not, 11 have tendered counteroffers which, for many reasons, cannot be accepted for reasons not to do with price, two are in estates pending action of the courts and one has been repossessed by the Association for nonpayment of common charges.

“Of the 37 shareholders remaining, we have had absolutely no communication with 10 shareholders, and the last 27 have flatly rejected any interest in selling.

“We are more than willing to provide signed proxies proving these signed agreements to the Board of Directors to demonstrate the well more than 60% of shareholders who have executed contracts so they may be aware of key issues that affect their fiduciary responsibilities. No shareholder has directly or indirectly asked to be removed from their contracts, including the three members of the Board of Directors who have valid contracts with the Purchaser, and who then authorized a lawsuit against the Purchaser, me, my employees and their former attorney.

“As far as the merits of the lawsuit, my opinion is very simple. A vast minority of shareholders do not want to sell their units, but they control the Board of Directors. So they filed a lawsuit throwing whatever they could think of up against the wall, all of which is demonstrably false but was designed to distract the shareholders and the public from the factual financial, physical and legal condition of the Corporation. Instead, it is an attempt to delay the ability for 108 (or more) shareholders to sell their homes for a reasonable price and terms by hoping that a  diversion of attention to the buyer, my firm and the past attorney of the corporation will somehow result in a desired result.

“I really don’t know what they hope to accomplish if they are successful. It’s hard to say whether it is to force all 108 shareholders to stay at Dreamy Hollow indefinitely, to sell to another group who may want to purchase, or just to ‘win’ but I expect that either this litigation, or perhaps future litigation, may get to the bottom of that and the reasons for all the defamatory commentary.”

Joe Walker is among the Dreamy Hollow residents who are dying to sell to Belpointe. “The majority of the people here want to sell because the place is falling into the ground,” Walker said Saturday. “These small group of people are holding everything up on the business end, they are doing everything they can to block it. The board of directors is on their side and they are supposed to be representing the majority of the people who live here and they are not. It’s a one-sided, back door deal as far as I am concerned.”

Sue Walker agreed with him. “Instead of the board representing all the shareholders they have aligned with a small minority that are absolutely causing nothing but problems in terms of wanting to sell,” she said.

“The bottom line is the majority of people want to sell. We are not being allowed to which – we are governed by a board,” Joe Walker said. “They have aligned themselves with this minority. The people who want to buy our units are being dragged into court for every little thing, to keep postponing, and postponing and postponing, and hoping that time will run out. That’s really the bottom line. I am just disgusted with them.”

Walker has been “through a whole mess” in his 16 years as a shareholder, he said. “This place needs repairs to the moon and nothing has been done. We paid our common charges constantly since we have been here and as you can see we have nothing for it,” he said.

McMahon disputes that there is a majority looking to sell. “There are people who call themselves ‘the majority.’ There are people who call themselves ‘the minority.’ What does that mean? Who is deciding that’s the majority? Who is telling them they’re the majority or the minority?”

The court case has only been holding up the purchases for a month, he said. “If they had the majority they would have taken over six months ago,” McMahon said.

Farricker’s statement on that:

“There is not a ‘sale’ of Dreamy Hollow. There are 108 (or more) contracts of sale with individual shareholders who have lives to lead and personal decisions to make with what is likely their greatest investment. In order for those units to sell, it requires both the cooperation of the Property Group, the site manager, and, according to the bylaws, approval of the Admissions Committee. The Purchaser attempted to engage the Property Group in late January in conversation, to begin the process of filing Admissions Packages. Initially, Anna Mosback of Property Group was cooperative and helpful, however upon the third contact she indicated that Property Group was directed by the Corporation attorney not to work with the Purchaser, but all contact must go through his office. As agent, I attempted to contact Barbara Millar and Laila Andreson, to get the Admissions Committee started on its required review, on numerous occasions by email, receiving no reply. When I contacted them by email and requested to meet them in person, the attorney sent an email indicating that I was not to go and meet them. So, the reason the 108 sales have not ‘gone through’ is because there have been no cooperation by the required agents in order to complete these sales.”

A man who said he has lived in the complex for a month and a half, after the death of his sister, said he has talked to a lot of residents. Most want to sell, he said. “What they are offering was fair, pretty close to market value,” he said. “… The offer is great. You can live for nine months, without any common charge, which is nice. That gives you the opportunity to save some money.”

His father and sister bought into Dreamy Hollow 10 years ago, he said. “I don’t think we would have purchased in hindsight knowing that we don’t have much control over it,” he said.

Dreamy Hollow 15-0321 004

The path to a basement at Dreamy Hollow.

Farricker said last month that Dreamy Hollow’s financial woes are partially attributable to the poor condition of the property. A boiler needed $200,000 worth of work, which the cooperative didn’t have, he said. The boiler has needed replacing for years, residents say; one former resident said the best heat he could get in the winter was 68 degrees, which he felt was inadequate.

McMahon, however, said two boilers have been replaced, and the last one will be replaced within six weeks.

Regarding Walker’s assertion that no repairs were being made, McMahon said, “At the last Board meeting, I think they were away, we approved repairs at the pool and the landscaping contract, and everything else that we do normally. We’re not doing anything above and beyond. I mean we are actually trying to cut back on expenses. That’s why we got a new landscaper, to cut back on expenses.”

The issue with the pool has been ongoing. “(They said), the pool was falling apart. We had an engineer come in and say that’s not true,” McMahon said.

A former Board member disputed that.

“Near the end of the pool season last year we received an engineer’s report stating that the pool was not safe and there should be major repairs done to it as the land, it was settling. The new board had the ‘pool guy’ look at it and he disagrees with the engineer, and they are listening to the ‘pool guy’ and moving forward with the pool. Once again, the written, paid-for opinion of an engineer vs. the said opinion of a pool maintenance man and the board is listening to the pool guy,” the former Board member said.

“The information for the Pool was provided for me by the Board of Directors, in which Mr. McMahon has been the unbroken President since I was retained,” Farricker said.

Yes, it’s true that there are people who aren’t paying their common charges, but there have always been people who haven’t paid their common charges, McMahon said.

“People say – I haven’t heard it – but (they say)  they were told (by Exit) not to pay their common charges because they’re going to get their money back at the end – but from who? They’re not going to get their money back, they’ll get discounted on the sale, the purchase,” McMahon said. “Let’s say you do five months and you haven’t paid $5,000 or $7,000 and the deal doesn’t go through. Now your credit has been completely destroyed because you are in foreclosure.”

“The twelfth paragraph in the standard contract that has been reviewed by the Corporation attorney indicates that sellers who fall behind more than two months in their contract of sale also become in default of their contract and lose any right to 9 months free rent after closing,” Farricker said.

McMahon said Farricker is working with the “old board.”

Farricker said:

“When I was hired, the Board had eight members. Three of the eight are still on the Board. One of these members is in contract to sell their shares, along with two recently elected Board members also in contract. I am working with 108 families who have elected to sell and who call our office daily in order find out why their right to sell has been obstructed by a lawsuit that, additionally, they are being asked to subsidize through their common charges. We have made many, many friends at Dreamy Hollow, so trying to create hurtful divisions by inventing sides, like ‘new board’ and ‘old board,’ is baffling because any Board is supposed to represent the shareholders first and not create divisions like this.”

McMahon said the offers made by Exit are unfair; his neighbor will make just as much profit as he will, he said, even though he scrimped and saved and skipped vacations so he could pay his mortgage, and his neighbor was less frugal. “There are 164 stories here,” he said.

Farricker’s reply:

“As Mr. McMahon is fully aware, when the Board of Directors, of which he was President and who was actively involved in the discussions, began to consider offering the shareholders the option of selling their units, we negotiated a complete package. The Board was not interested in having my company just ask people if they wanted to sell, but were adamant in working with me to achieve a deal that was fair and reflected all the potential problems that may emerge from trying to purchase 164 units fairly. So, while we set uniform prices for 1, 2 and 3 bedroom units, we made a number of adjustments in the offer to reflect reality. One was to offer to pay shareholders who did work to their units recently. Another was to offer nine months of free rent to all shareholders who sold, to give them adequate time to adjust their living circumstances. Another was, if they were renting their units, to retain their tenants at their existing rents. And finally, which was the most difficult, we had to create an offer that took into account that 44 shareholders were “underwater” on their mortgages. That meant that, fairly or unfairly, it was not fair to assume that someone would sell, and have the money to pay off a mortgage which in some cases was $100,000 above the general offer. So yes, the final agreements at Dreamy Hollow are not all uniform, but reflect the reality of the individual’s personal issues, and some of the value of what they invested.”

“The lawsuit was only brought to represent the people who don’t want to go ahead with this sell out,” McMahon said. “There’s a lot of people who don’t understand why one side can say, ‘Well this is what we want,’ but the other side can say ‘Why can’t we have what we want?’. The last six months nobody has brought up a reason. The only reason that has been brought up to sell is ‘I,’ the individual speaking, ‘can’t get somebody to buy my unit.’”

Andresen wants to stay at Dreamy Hollow as an owner, not a renter. “Forget it,” she said, about the offer to purchase her unit on the back row of Dreamy Hollow, where she routinely sees deer passing by the stand of woods at the top of the hill facing her front door.

“Sounds like a good deal, but you know what they want? They want the 19 acres. They want the property,” Andresen said. “They’ll find some way to either make it so it costs twice as much as it does now or they’ll condemn, tear it down and build God knows what, an Avalon or a luxury-type thing.”

But Dreamy Hollow is built partially in wetlands. Its 18.782 acres are in a B Residence District and is subject to an “overlay” zoning district for Planned Residential Development (the PRD Zone), which became effective July 1, 1955, and subsequently became a special permit requirement in 1978, according to a legal opinion written in 1997 by Robinson and Cole.

One of many deteriorated front steps at Dreamy Hollow.

One of many deteriorated front steps at Dreamy Hollow.

“The Zoning Regulations were amended in 1989, 1990 and 1992 to limit the number of multifamily dwellings allowed in the PRD. In a B Residence Zone, the limit is one thousand eight hundred six (l,806) units, which are existing or approved as of Dec. 31, 1990… Therefore, a cap in each residence zone was established based on the existing number of approved units, effectively prohibiting any more PRD’s but allowing existing units to be replaced” the Robinson and Cole opinion states.

The property has less than the acreage required for 164 units, the letter states.

Another source who asked to remain anonymous said only 12 acres are buildable. There would be a maximum of 150 apartments, he said. Five  of the 13 buildings are in wetlands, the source said.

A resident, who, like most, asked to remain anonymous, agreed that the wetlands are an issue.

“As far as I am aware, Dreamy Hollow is grandfathered into the plan here so no matter how ownership is transferred nothing more can go up, they can’t even redo the insides of the buildings to create more units within,” the resident said. “So currently there are four units in building 1 ABCD, and it must stay as four; they can’t knock down/raise walls to make it any more units. Also, if a building is knocked down, nothing can go up in its place. I am not 100 percent on the amount of wetlands but I know there is a large section of land that is wetlands. Some of the people who are against the buyout believe that these things can be changed with petitions with the town and are worried that they will be, so they feel that after 2 years or less the potential buyer will petition the town to allow changes to that and then they can knock down buildings and put high-rise apartments with many more units. As far as I understand (and I do not claim to be an expert), this is not allowed.”

Andresen’s next-door neighbor wants to sell; “It’s too small,” he said, before clamming up.

But Andresen doesn’t know where she would go.

“For what they were offering, where are you going to go? Not around here,” said Andresen, who works in Stamford. “I don’t want to move to Danbury or Shelton or someplace.”

Andresen said she grew up in Minnesota, and was attracted to Dreamy Hollow because she could have some “green,” a front yard to plant tomatoes or to have a lawn chair. In winter, she usually goes cross country skiing on the paths in the complex, although this year that didn’t happen.

She said she knows a young couple who bought a condo near Norwalk Hospital when the prices were high. Now they rent it out and lease a house for much less money in Bristol, a transition made possible by the hospitality of the wife’s parents.

“There is no way you’re going to be able to live anywhere in lower Fairfield County for what we live here,” Andresen said. “I don’t want to live in Danbury or Shelton and drive an hour plus each day of the week.”

Coming soon – the history of Dreamy Hollow.

Dreamy Hollow Legal opinion on Zoning

Dreamy Hollow Lawsuit

Contract betw. prior D.H.BoD & Lockwood&Mead Real Est.-Farricker

28 comments

WAVE March 23, 2015 at 12:54 pm

“The lawsuit was only brought to represent the people who don’t want to go ahead with this sell out,” McMahon said. This is DESPICABLE! Mr. McMahon is admitting that he, the Board, and the co-op’s attorney (who are supposed to be representing the community— which, in a democratic society is the majority) have chosen to take the community’s money and use it against the community whom they have a fiduciary responsibility to represent.

Despite McMahon’s delusional comment, “There are people who call themselves ‘the majority.’ There are people who call themselves ‘the minority.’ What does that mean? Who is deciding that’s the majority? Who is telling them they’re the majority or the minority?” The simple answer is math. Math determines the majority. Despite McMahon and the Board’s refusal to admit that the co-op’s attorney has seen the signed contracts of the majority, does not mean they do not exist and they are not the majority. So why is Mr. McMahon taking on the role of a dictator, preventing the overwhelming majority from making the business and family decisions that are best for them? I cannot imagine anything more democratic than a co-op, until, as historically dictators do; one uses the resources of the co-op for themselves instead of the majority of the community. Mr. McMahon does not want to leave, so he has chosen to commandeer the resources of the community to delay the process in the courts and force us to stay.

“McMahon said the offers made by Exit are unfair; his neighbor will make just as much profit as he will, he said, even though he scrimped and saved and skipped vacations so he could pay his mortgage, and his neighbor was less frugal.” Really? Gee, I think it’s very unfair that I have chosen a career that means I can only afford a place like Dreamy Hollow and not a McMansion in Westport. Or perhaps, I have chosen a less expensive home so that I can go on vacation? Once again, McMahon believes he should dictate how people in the community can spend their own money?

I will give Mr. McMahon this, the one thing he got right was, “the only reason that has been brought up to sell is ‘I,’ the individual speaking, ‘can’t get somebody to buy my unit.” He is correct! No bank has offered an individual mortgage in DH for more than THREE years. Additionally, no bank is currently suggesting that they are even considering changing their policy. That means anyone who wanted to sell in the past three years, has been unable to do so (unless they found a cash buyer and were willing to accept a lower offer than is being provided by Norpost.) It is also not just those who have wanted to move in the past three year, but the fact that people are tired of throwing good money after bad. We simply do not have the funds, nor the ability to raise the funds, to be able to deal with the innumerable issues on our property. Any more expenditures is good money after bad. So who is Mr. McMahon to choose when people can and cannot decide that their investment is no longer where they wish to put any more of their capital and it is time to find a new investment? Especially when it is not his own funds that he is using to stop people from selling their failed investment, but the resources of the community?

Lastly, the adamant position against the sale by Laila Anderson, one of only two people on the Admissions Committee, certainly validates the comments by Frank Farricker about the admissions committee refusing to speak to the buyer about commencing the sale of these units.

I Want Out March 23, 2015 at 1:29 pm

I agree. I’m extremely upset that my common charges are being used to fund a waste of time lawsuit that is against the wishes of the majority of shareholders. Every month this drags on without closing as another month of hundreds of dollars in interest paid to my mortgage company. That is just lost money; there’s no chance to recoup it.

Maybeth March 23, 2015 at 6:43 pm

Well said WAVE. I can’t believe this is STILL being held up by a few people. I wanted to be out by the Spring. Just ridiculous.

Disgruntled Resident March 23, 2015 at 7:11 pm

“This lawsuit…” Comment by McMahon. So he is saying it’s not for the well being of the community and that we were lied to and misinformed. It’s to stop the sale. So he just admitted to lying under oath??

Resident March 25, 2015 at 10:30 am

As a long term resident, what you are reading is from a small group of disgruntle people who want to sell and find this is the best
way for them. When all this started 9 months ago Exit wanted 80%,
they and we were told they were very close to this number scaring
many people to believe they had no choice but to sign, then 5 months
latter Exit said, in a letter to us that they had not received the 80% thy wanted, and now they would go for 51% controlling shares
although they Exit had said they would leave Dec 15th, but they
continued to call and contact residents with more threating statements and if you don’t now sign you will not get a good
(as they call this)offer. Many people here were very scared
and felt there was no alternative,(if they did not sign they would
lose there homes and what ever little monies they were offered.
This has been a long harassment and intimidating process (9 months). I would say/suggest that if a survey was done now and
residents were asked would you have sold before this started or
did you fell intimidated by this process, I am sure Exit would
not have,(if they do?)the sale numbers they claim. Also the place
is not in bad shape as claimed. just another scare active. Thank
You.

I Want Out March 25, 2015 at 3:03 pm

Resident… This place is in terrible shape. Issues have been brought up time and time again in shareholder meetings for years. We did not sign right away with Exit, and we did not feel intimidated at any point during the process. In fact, they barely contacted us at all. I have read every piece of correspondence sent to me from both sides, and my husband spoke with various people several times, and not once did they say they had contracts for almost 80% of the shareholders.
The first negative correspondence I saw from them was the most recent where they warned holdouts that they could have the power to buy them out forcibly. As we only own shares in a corporation, this seems to be entirely within their ability.
I have said this before, but I will say it again. The ONLY intimidation we ever felt was from the “anonymous” letters sent with board communications or left on our car windshields or doorsteps.

The Majority March 31, 2015 at 1:12 pm

Walking around the community and speaking to the residents who feel betrayed by Brien and the rest of the current board (3 current board members are sellers) is really sad. People are disgusted that the baseless lawsuit and the sabotage tactics are really affecting peoples lives. Just spoke to a shareholder who was hoping to be in Florida by now. Another shareholder is waiting to be reunited with his children in Arizona. They are both scared that if this deal falls through do to this boards sabotage efforts, they will never get an opportunity like this again. This is the definition of BACK ROOM DEALINGS. The former boards decision (Brien and Barbera included) to allow Exit to Ask people if they wanted to sell their units, was not back room dealings because the Shareholder still had the power to accept or reject the offer. I am thankful that the former board (agreement signed by no other than Brien himself) has given me this option to sell an unsellable unit at way higher than market value. The MAJORITY HAS SPOKEN! 65% is a majority and it seems Brien doesn’t understand simple math. Its mind blowing that the board is spending like drunken sailors with this lawsuit and attorney fees with the actual money of the people who don’t want this lawsuit. Everybody needs to go to the 4/14 special meeting to demand that YOUR RIGHTS are being protected. Remember, this is a cooperative and the Majority has the final say. See you all 4/14!

Shannon Eagan April 1, 2015 at 9:44 pm

Thanks Majority! It’s weird that out of the 12 comments here, only 1 is from the minority. Again… 1/12, simple math! And, just speculating, but do you think the minority has been hushed by their legal representative (which, we are paying for– isn’t that despicable irony?) because their comments in the article have already created such a legal quagmire that even the brilliant attorney for the coop cannot defend them?!?!

Ann Romanello April 2, 2015 at 8:50 am

No. We just can’t be bothered with the nonsense. If you want to do the math, there are nine unique users on this thread, not 12. This page is for Fprank to stand on his soap box and you, his cheerleaders. No worries, we are talking. But not to you thanks to the divisiveness that you and your ilk have perpetrated. @Shannon – in the spirt of full disclosure, you might mention that you were part of the board who invited in the deal in the first place. @MayBeth, think about it. Of course the people who happily signed were not harassed. It was the rest of us who had and continue to have tactics of intimidation hurled at us. Sadly, if you really knew, you might not change your mind about selling, but you would not address the rest of us with such a lack of empathy and understanding. I wish you all well – it’s sad that you don’t seem to wish the same for us. If you did, we may have been able to reach a deal that was mutually beneficial –

The Majority April 2, 2015 at 9:39 am

It seems that Ann Romanello’s tone has changed quite a bit. Just wondering, what could be more beneficial than getting way over market value for a worthless unit? What could be more beneficial than having the opportunity for seniors to stay in there units forever for the current commom charges? Where is the Empathy and Understanding for the people whose lives have been put on hold because of the Minorities bullying and stall tactics? Shannon Eagan, thank you very much for the opportunity to get out of a horrible investment and have the opportunity to purchase a new home with my family. I thought I would have to walk away from this unit or short sale. And for Ann Romenello, its not too late to save your investment. Nobody is getting kicked out and you could still work out a good deal. Does it hurt to talk?

The Majority April 2, 2015 at 9:53 am

The rest of the board including our President Brien McMahon. Thanks again for this opportunity! Best of luck to all of you

The Majority April 2, 2015 at 9:58 am

Is anybody else having problems with the pages constantly jumping and the extreme lag?

The Majority April 2, 2015 at 10:04 am

@Ann Give me an F Give me a R Give me an A Give me a N Give me a K! What does that spell Freedom!!! Whooooo.

Shannon Eagan April 2, 2015 at 10:08 pm

I gladly take credit for offering options! Selling was not the only one, if you remember? But our financial situation was and is undeniable. So we offered the option to raise the common charges or implement an assessment (either of which could have possibly helped and avoided Norpost from coming to our rescue) but unfortunately, those who thought they knew better voted to “do nothing”! @Ann, you did this to yourselves. This situation is not a consequence of the UNANIMOUS Board decision (of which 3 are still on the Board and 3 have signed contracts to sell), it was the decision to continue the status quo and “do nothing”, that has led to the decision by 65% of the shareholders to realize and accept this place is now unsalvageable– because even those who didn’t want to leave, also didn’t want to invest in their community. And, just to clarify @Ann, YOU invited Nancy on Norwalk to a Board meeting and asked her to cover this story! Now, that the facts have been investigated and reported, this is just a soapbox for Frank? Hypocritical, no?

Disgruntled Resident April 3, 2015 at 7:03 am

I would think that Ann of all people would be happy about this article and the revelations made by Brien… She wanted this to play out in the legal system which potentially could have cost thousands of $$$, but now since Brien has said that it was all a stall tactic for the people who don’t want to sell and not to protect the interests of the community we can avoid all of the legal fees, and ANN we have our answer!!!!!!!!!

Ann, we may not see eye to eye but you seem like a pretty smart person, even you must agree that Laila being on the admissions committee and being so adamantly against this buyer from purchasing in Dreamy Hollow is a conflict of interest. The sad thing is, I know people who have asked to be on the admissions committee and have not been given any word, pro or con for it.

It seems that anti-buyout residents have a lot to say, until what they say is factually proven to be untrue, and then they don’t say anything. Most of the pro-buyout people are empathetic towards those who want to stay, I have not heard one person say or do anything that would force any other resident to sell… on the contrary though, there is a lot that has been done to NOT ALLOW me to sell my unit….DOUBLE STANDARD

There are 77 properties for sale in Norwalk for less than $250k….if you use your money from the sale of your place and the 9 months FREE rent you save instead of spend as a down payment your mortgage would be under $800/month…so why does it matter if its a mortgage or common charges??

Common charges you will never get back, a mortgage however builds equity and you can get back, seems like if you have to pay a large sum of money a mortgage would probably be better financially…. especially if you want to stay put in the property for a long time

Disgruntled Resident April 3, 2015 at 7:06 am

@ANN

Soapbox for Frank???

It seems like there is an equal amount of time and words spent on both sides of this argument, its just that the truth that Frank says is better than the truth that Brien says.

You invited Nancy, and I believe were happy when it was announced (in the comments of the last article) that Nancy would be doing a follow up story…

I guess those were just white lie’s??? You must be friends with Brien

Disgruntled Resident April 3, 2015 at 2:02 pm

There was a recent appraisal done on as unit that is in foreclosure… it is a 3 bedroom unit and the appraisal was done by a licensed and certified state of Connecticut real estate appraiser and it appraised out to $90k…..this is a 3-BEDROOM!!!! So are we really getting screwed here?? The original offer by Lacoff was $80k for the unit, +9 months free rent, plus recent upgrades, plus all fees at closing…. so all those pluses put this number well above $90k.

Those who think that we are being offered something below what it is worth or severely misinformed.

This is public knowledge and was found on the civil inquiry website under a current foreclosure…

Our president happens to be one of the defendants in this case, so he is a defendant against Dreamy Hollow and him retaining office is not a conflict of Interest???

The Majority April 3, 2015 at 5:19 pm

That appraisal is actually on the high side as explained because it is an END Unit. 9 months of free rent and no mortgage on the average is almost 2k a month plus the closing fees add up to at least 5k. So a 3 bedroom would get a value of around 113k. That is a really good price considering the buyer would have to pay cash since no banks are giving mortgages here. I really feel deep down that there are a lot of people here who out of hatred for the old board and out of spite refuse to even talk in good faith. If another buyer comes that they endorse, you’d see how fast they would sign to sell.

Chet Kolakowski April 9, 2015 at 9:25 am

As an owner for over 30 years I am sorry to see what is going on here at Dreamy Hollow. It was my first home, and it made me proud to be part of the Dreamy Hollow Family. I have see the ups and downs in the value of our units and what is offered today is by far and away the best I have seen in years. Don’t forget, some one bed room units once sold for $90k (long ago), and others sold for $12k (not so long ago). The worst thing about selling units is that there is no good way for the buyer to finance the unit. This has always been the biggest short coming for the sale of a unit. Homes should not be all but impossible to sell. Dreamy Hollow is in a great location, in a great town, in a great state, so why should it be so hard to sell. I know change is not always accepted easily, but over the years the BOARDS have done little to promote Dreamy Hollow as a great place to live. Today, any potential single home buyers run for the hills if a Realtor suggests DH. Sad, sad, sad.

So what should you do? Weigh it all, and do what is right for the majority. In the long run, I assume most people will sell their unit, Peace to all at Dreamy Hollow, but please think deeply for what is happening is a shame.

Maybeth April 9, 2015 at 6:13 pm

Chet, we knew people that had cash buyers. The Board turned them down. Poor management has done Dreamy Hollow in. Sorry that things have gone south.

I Want Out April 13, 2015 at 2:21 pm

Now there’s a lawsuit/injuction request against the 20% of shareholders that were listed as requesting a special meeting? Are you kidding me? I am so done with this place. There is no way people can continue to live here together after this lawsuit.

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