Re: HOA taxes
From: David L. Mandel (
Date: Tue, 9 Feb 2010 00:21:05 -0800 (PST)
Simple solution that has worked well for us now 16+ years:
Meal and laundry payments go into the separate account of the utterly 
unincorporated and voluntary Southside Park Urban Dining Society (SPUDS), which 
pays for food shopping and replacement/repair of washers & dryers. Accounting 
is bare bones, and In fact, almost no money actually changes hands, as most 
people's meal and laundry "debt" are balanced by shopping costs when they cook 
and turn in an expense statement. Maybe twice in 16 years I've fallen behind 
(cooked cheap meals) and had to write a small check to replenish my account. 
With all that excluded the HOA budget easily meets the 90% threshold. 
David Mandel

From: Sharon Villines <sharon [at]>
To: Cohousing-L <cohousing-l [at]>
Sent: Mon, February 8, 2010 6:43:41 AM
Subject: Re: [C-L]_ HOA taxes

On Feb 8, 2010, at 8:57 AM, Diana E Carroll wrote:

> Meals I think would be hard to include.  :-\

What about meetings following potlucks, like professional networking  
group do? Those expenses are all tax deductible. (Said almost in jest.)

If you want to play the game of tax exemptions and the IRS, you can,  
in a million ways. Even have a team working on this like corporations  
and wealthy people do. As Warren Buffett says, his secretary pays  
more taxes than he does.

But how much money do you save? Is it worth the distraction from the  
business of community? Are the taxes paid more than having a bake sale  
would cover? Can you make this a game? A community activity? An act of  
civil disobedience.

Some would say that tax avoidance is in the same category as  
stewardship of community funds. Maybe it is. My concern is how much is  
it worth? What affect on your values does that focus have? How does it  
distort what the community priorities?

Just something to think about during budgeting season when someone  
raises the 90% limitation to prevent HOA dues from being spent on  
something the IRS doesn't consider necessary. When does the tail start  
wagging the dog?

Sharon Villines
Takoma Village Cohousing, Washington DC

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