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BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH
reply to mathfaster

Re: HOA's are discriminated against as well

A) That should be illegal to bundle and limit consumer choice, but also, the HOA is so stupid. Verizon FIOS is far superior to cable.


elray

join:2000-12-16
Santa Monica, CA
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·EarthLink

said by BiggA:

A) That should be illegal to bundle and limit consumer choice, but also, the HOA is so stupid. Verizon FIOS is far superior to cable.

Absolutely not.

People should remain free to agree to group purchasing arrangements, as one might do for an exclusive MDU installation for an apartment building or condo. In many cases, it is the only way you're going to get FTTH, and you typically achieve a 50% discount over retail pay-tv prices.

If you don't want to subject to the restrictions of an HOA, or the apartment management's chosen broadband service, don't buy or rent in those buildings.

BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH

I suppose the "don't buy or rent" argument is somewhat valid, although you can argue that the cable or internet service is not usually a deciding factor, when there are many others. The HOA shouldn't be able to bargain with one company, as that effectively limits other companies from providing programming to those residents. It gets a little more fuzzy when you start talking about retirement communities, college dorms, and the like, since they are unified, managed facilities.


elray

join:2000-12-16
Santa Monica, CA
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·EarthLink

said by BiggA:

I suppose the "don't buy or rent" argument is somewhat valid, although you can argue that the cable or internet service is not usually a deciding factor, when there are many others. The HOA shouldn't be able to bargain with one company, as that effectively limits other companies from providing programming to those residents. It gets a little more fuzzy when you start talking about retirement communities, college dorms, and the like, since they are unified, managed facilities.

It might not be a deciding factor, but we seem to read about it here on a daily basis, that someone is unhappy with their rent/purchase commitment they made, expressing post-purchase blues over [lack of] broadband capability.

Caveat emptor. If you can't be bothered, when making what is typically your greatest financial commitment, to spend a few minutes of due diligence to verify your telecom/broadband/entertainment/utility/crime/schools/transit issues, then you get what you deserve.

Given the choice between living in an HOA community with feeble 1.5M DSL as your sole broadband option, or contracting to bring in 50mbps FTTH for a price that's less, per-unit, than the aforementioned DSL, but requires an exclusive commitment of 5 years, which would you pick? Likewise, would you rather pay $80/month for basic satellite service, or buy it as a group for $40/unit?

BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH

Well, the counterargument to that is someone may have moved in five or ten years ago, and now they are stuck without good broadband, even though it had what was good braodband then when they moved in. Same argument for rural places that can't get anything other than Wildblue (although most can get AT&T or Verizon 3G now).

They shouldn't be doing exclusive agreements, since that limits the consumer's choice. In this case, there isn't an exclusive agreement, it just sounds like Verizon won't come in since the HOA is already bundling cable with the HOA fees, which would make it nearly impossible for Verizon to get many subs.


elray

join:2000-12-16
Santa Monica, CA
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·EarthLink

said by BiggA:

Well, the counterargument to that is someone may have moved in five or ten years ago, and now they are stuck without good broadband, even though it had what was good braodband then when they moved in. Same argument for rural places that can't get anything other than Wildblue (although most can get AT&T or Verizon 3G now).

They shouldn't be doing exclusive agreements, since that limits the consumer's choice. In this case, there isn't an exclusive agreement, it just sounds like Verizon won't come in since the HOA is already bundling cable with the HOA fees, which would make it nearly impossible for Verizon to get many subs.

The problem with your counterargument is you likely would strand those customers with no broadband during those previous five or ten years, and they'd lose their group discount. You can't have it both ways.

You can't expect a broadband firm to undertake the capital expense to deploy to your building where no service exists, without some form of commitment to mitigate their risk.

The person who moved in 5-10 years ago still has the choice to move, or WAIT for the agreement to expire. (We moved our residence, and our offices, at great tremendous phenomenal expense, years ago, because certain other "deciding factors" mattered most. In fact, we still suffer under a pay-tv monopoly as a result, and our DSL choices would not impress.)

BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH

They would just do it like regular single-family residences, where you can get cable or DSL. The cable and phone lines have been around for a while.

Satellite is the tricky part, since if the HOA owns the outside of the building, you might not be able to mount a dish. Of course, if the customer owns the outside of the building, they are protected by OTARD, which is one of the few laws I've ever read that is actually extremely clear and protects the consumer.


elray

join:2000-12-16
Santa Monica, CA
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·EarthLink

Sorry, but that's why you buy a single-family residence, hopefully not in an HOA. (One of our local SFR HOAs exists to make sure you tend your garden ... they'll seed, water and mow your lawn if you don't!!)

Those who buy into a condo are deliberately entering into a communal arrangement, subjecting themselves to the governance of the condo board, in order to derive the common benefits; those who rent an apartment entrust the management to oversee certain common facilities.

I'm not a fan of communal / group arrangements, and I hope to exit the planet without ever residing in a condo. But if I did, I would not act surprised when the condo board created significant restrictions "for my benefit". I'd much rather rent - a single landlord is much easier to handle; they want your business, and aim to please.