Homeowners face $200 fine if they don't keep garage doors open during weekdays

AUBURN, Calif. – A California community is upset after their homeowners association told them they needed to keep their garage doors open during the day after reports of people living in garages.

The new rule has 9-year-old Jason concerned.

"I'm still worried a little. I'm still a little worried because I just think it's all going to get stolen you know?" he said.

A list left earlier this week by the homeowners association of Auburn Greens mandates leaving garage doors up from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

"I don't think it's a good idea because they are going to steal my bike, I've got an electric scooter, an electric wheelchair. I've got all kinds of stuff. I just don't think it`s very good to have it open," Jason said.

For every home like Jason`s, that is following the new rule, there are plenty others that are not, like Shally Ia.

"I have nothing to hide. I understand that somebody had someone living in the garage. I don't. I am following the rules. All I am asking is (for) a reasonable way of going around this. If you want to do a monthly, bi-monthly inspection of my garage. I have nothing to hide. If I have something stored in there and you don't like it, I'll remove it," she said.

Residents said a $200 fine and an administrative hearing are the potential punishment for keeping the door down.

For some, paying the fine may be worth avoiding a burglary.

"Let me give you the $200 fine right now. Give me a month so I can get my stuff out and I might as well clear everything out and leave the garage door open permanently because there is no point to having a garage door then," Ia said.

A call to the homeowners association wasn`t returned. The office was closed during the hours it had posted as open.

As some residents seem to be testing how open the garage needs to be, regardless of the choice to keep the door up or down, many residents share a common disdain for the rule.

"I hope it does change. I hope it does," Jason said.

The HOA monthly meeting is scheduled to take place in two weeks, and many residents say they plan to be there.