Archives: FAQs

What should an owner do if they cannot attend an owner meeting?

An owner who cannot attend an owner meeting should give another person a proxy, which is a written form authorizing the other person to attend and be counted toward the voting requirement. A proxy may also be granted to allow the proxy holder to vote on behalf of the absent owner.

Under what circumstances can an owner decision be made without a meeting?

A matter that could be decided at an owner meeting may also be decided by casting a written mail-in ballot. Most governing documents contain provisions allowing for business to be conducted by written ballot with some exceptions. The provisions differ greatly, and a careful review of the association’s governing documents is necessary to determine whether …

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How should HOA decisions be made?

The first step in homeowner association decision making is determining whether the course of action under consideration would be reasonable and in the best interests of all owners. If this question can be answered affirmatively, the next step is to review the governing documents with the following questions in mind: Is a particular action or …

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Can the owners override a decision by the board, a committee, an officer or the manager?

In general, the owners cannot override a board, committee, officer or manager decision. If the owners are unhappy with a board decision, they can convene a meeting, vote to remove one or more directors, and hope the replacement directors make a more satisfactory decision. If the owners are unhappy with a committee, officer, or manager …

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How are HOA powers distributed between the owners, the board of directors, the committees, the officers, and the manager?

In general, the distribution of power and authority within the HOA is determined by the governing documents. Where the governing documents simply give the association power to do or approve something without specifically requiring owner approval, the power can be exercised by the board of directors without owner approval. In practice, most governing documents require …

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Is there a government agency with authority over HOA activities?

There is no governmental agency with authority to oversee homeowner associations. Association duties and standards must be enforced by owners and lenders through the court system or through some alternative dispute resolution process such as mediation or arbitration.

Under what circumstances can the HOA refuse to allow an owner access to recreational facilities?

A homeowners’ association may charge fees for the use of recreational facilities and refuse access without payment, provided the charge applies equally to all owners and is not specifically prohibited by the governing documents. Such fees can be initiated and adjusted by the board unless the governing documents specifically require an owner vote. The association …

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Does an owner have to give the HOA access to their home?

Most CC&Rs state that the homeowners’ association has the right to enter any unit or lot whenever necessary to fulfill the association’s duties. Among the duties that would justify entry are common area maintenance, verification of an owner’s compliance with owner maintenance requirements or alteration restrictions, and pet rules. Often, the CC&Rs will require that …

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Can Limited Common Elements (LCEs), such as parking spaces or storage spaces, be sold to or exchanged with another owner?

If the LCE is assigned to a particular unit or lot on a map or plat recorded separately from the CC&Rs, the sale or exchange would require an amendment of the map or plat as described in the previous answer. If the LCE is assigned to a particular unit or lot only in the CC&Rs …

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What is a party wall?

The term “party wall” usually means a shared wall, fence, or other building element that sits on the border of two or more lots or between two or more units in a condominium. Where there are party walls, the CC&Rs will usually allocate responsibility for maintenance, impose restrictions on alterations, and provide access rights for …

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What do the terms percentage interest and common interest mean?

The terms “percentage interest” and “common interest” are used only when the shared area is jointly owned by the individual owners (rather than by the association). In these cases, terms “percentage interest” and “common interest” refer to the percentage share of the common area/common element owned by an owner. An owner’s “percentage interest” or “common …

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What are Limited Common Elements?

The term “limited common elements” (“LCE”) refers to parts of a condominium project that are not within the defined boundaries of a unit but are intended to be used exclusively by one owner. Technically, LCEs are part of the common elements owned by all the owners, but one owner holds a type of easement which …

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