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Homeowners associations (HOAs) are organizations that govern “common-interest” communities. HOAs run communities that can include single-family houses, townhomes, condos, or entire subdivisions. These associations are generally run by developers and/or residents who are elected to the HOA board and then oversee the HOA’s management company
As non-profit corporations, homeowners associations have bylaws that dictate how the HOA is governed. These might include the number of HOA board members, frequency of HOA board meetings, HOA meeting and quorum requirements, voting rights of members, amending HOA rules, and more.
HOA CC&Rs (Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions)
Each HOA has a set of CC&Rs, which is a Declaration of Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions. In the CC&Rs, the HOA’s obligations and rights (as well as the obligations and rights of the homeowners) is spelled out. All of the provisions within the CC&Rs are legally binding and enforceable. When you buy a property in an area that’s governed by an HOA, you’ll need to abide by all of the covenants and restrictions, which can include:
- rules and regulations
- how you can and can’t use your property
- dues and assessments
- HOA’s maintenance obligations
- homeowners’ maintenance obligations
- insurance requirements
- architectural reviews
HOA Rules and Regulations
HOA rules and regulations are rules and regulations that aren’t included in the HOA bylaws or HOA CC&Rs. These rules are generally easier to change than the HOA bylaws or HOA CC&Rs.
HOA Enforcements And Violations
The HOA board – which is elected by the members – is responsible for enforcing the HOA bylaws, HOA CC&Rs, and HOA rules. As a homeowner, if you have a violation, you could face a variety of penalties that could include:
- suspensions of privileges (e.g. access to community amenities)
- forced compliance (the HOA could take care of an issue with the homeowner’s property and then bill the homeowner for the services)
HOA Vendor Contracts
HOA boards will often sign contracts with vendors for services (such as snow removal, community pool cleaning, etc.) that are needed to take care of the property.
If you’re a homeowner, an experienced, local real estate attorney can review your HOA documents (before or after you purchase a property) and help you with any issues that you might be having with your HOA.
If you’re an HOA board member, an experienced, local real estate attorney can review and/or draft HOA bylaws, HOA CC&Rs, HOA rules and regulations, or HOA vendor contracts
At Timely Contract, we have local real estate attorneys who have experience throughout Idaho, including: Boise, Post Falls, Coeur d’Alene, Lewiston, Moscow, and Sandpoint.
We also have local real estate attorneys who have experience throughout Montana, including: Missoula, Billings, Bozeman, and Kalispell.