BOCA RATON, Fla. - In 1992, Wileen Coyne made a choice to spend her golden years at Broken Sound, a golf and country club community in Boca Raton.
Now 77 years old, Coyne believes she may be forced to sell her home because she is not able to afford the country club association fees that come with it.
Coyne said hundreds of dollars in fees she is required to pay each month have changed the way she feels about the high-end gated community.
"It's like taking money and flushing it down the toilet," she said.
Despite repeated requests from Broken Sound management, Coyne stopped paying the fees several months ago. She said current rules force all residents to pay to be members of either the golf or tennis clubs.
"What about the people who can't afford it?" she asked. "We live in a throwaway society," she said.
Approximately eight years ago, Coyne said, Broken Sound's main clubhouse underwent a tenant-approved multi-million dollar renovation. Coyne points out she voted against the plan. The renovation, she said, meant a reassessment of the amount of resident dues.
That reassessment, along with the requirement to be a paying member of one of the clubs, left Coyne with few options.
"Either I die, and I don't want to do that yet, or I sell my house," she said. "I wasn't prepared to sell my house," said Coyne. Years ago, she opted for the tennis club membership, but said she rarely uses it.
Coyne said there are other residents refusing to pay their dues; many because they are unable to afford to make the payments. "I would like to see them change the rules," she said. Despite her plea, she does not expect any of the rules to be altered.
Coyne tried putting her home up for sale a few months ago, but was unsuccessful. She plans to put the home back on the market again this week, though she said there are five identical-model homes in her neighborhood that are also on sale.
Attempts were made to contact the management from Broken Sound. Calls to the club's office were forwarded to the General Manager's office. Requests for comment have yet to be answered.
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