MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) - A Myrtle Beach resident is facing nearly $1,000 in homeowners’ association fines after getting picked up for work in a commercial vehicle.
Marcos Andrade has lived in the Burcale Commons community for nearly three years and said he was picked up for work every day.
He works with a hardwood floor company and for years the small box truck would pick him up.
“It has letters, but it doesn’t have my company name, it just says ‘Hardwood Floors.’ It doesn’t even have a phone number or something like that, just ‘Hardwood Floors’ and that’s it,” Andrade said.
Occasionally, the truck would stop by during the day to pick up some supplies or cut wood, but he said it never stayed overnight.
Andrade said it’s never been a problem until two months ago when he received a call.
“They call me and say the HOA is going to fine me for $100 if I park my truck over here. I say, ‘I don’t park the truck over here, it just comes to pick me up for work,’” he recalled.
He said the day he got the call he stopped getting a ride, but the fines have increased to nearly $1,000.
Andrade said the HOA told him the increase is because he never responded to an email.
“I don’t even check emails like that,” he said. “If you call me and say, ‘You cannot do this,’ I won’t do it anymore. Nobody tells me I have to send an email back.”
Andrade isn’t the only resident who’s violated this HOA rule.
Juan Rivera also lives in Burcale Commons. He owns a plumbing business and began coming home for lunch in the company’s vehicle.
“What I would do is come in, park it on the road, come in, have lunch and jump back in my vehicle and go to work,” Rivera explained. “That’s not acceptable anymore.”
Rivera said the HOA told him he was in violation of the rules.
“It’s my house. I pay the bills there. I should be able to come in for lunch when I want to come in for lunch, but I guess that right is being taken away from me.,” he said.
He also immediately stopped, and his fine was dropped.
A letter sent from the HOA to Andrade stated he violated the rule where, “No truck or vehicle used primarily for commercial purposes (others than those temporarily present on business) and or trailer (except boat trailers and camper trailers) may be parked within the properties.”
The letter stated the office needs to be notified with proper paperwork when the violation has been corrected. It also said Andrade has a right to appeal.
WMBF reached out to the HOA’s management company but did not hear back.
A neighbor in Burcale Commons told WMBF the neighborhood used to have multiple trucks parking on the street frequently. They said the rule is in the paperwork every resident receives and agrees to when they move in.
Despite being listed in the HOA rules and regulations, some still think the violation goes too far.
“To go as far as not allowing an owner of his own property to enter his neighborhood with his commercial vehicle to eat lunch that blows my mind. That goes well beyond, I believe, the scope of what an HOA was put in place to do,” said Chet Crockett, the founder and CEO of Carolina Forest Rental Properties.
Crockett manages the property Andrade rents in Burcale Commons. He’s managed properties in the area for 15 years and said he’s never encountered this rule before.
“Rules and regulations are out there for a reason and by no means am I saying that those should not be there but we have to add common sense to these rules and regulations and we have to look at exactly what are we trying to accomplish with these regulations and then move forward with reasonable rules that neighbors and tenants and owners can all follow,” Crockett said.