Real Estate Homeowner’s Association Law

A homeowner’s association is a program developed by a real estate group in order to design, sell, and manage a community of residences. A homeowner’s association can be turned over to a group of homeowners once a handful of lots within the development are sold off. The homeowner’s association is responsible for managing the amenities of the development such as communal events, management and maintenance of communal areas, development and construction of further communal areas, and the decision to include further members or additional residences to their homeowner’s association. The homeowner’s association is also responsible for enforcing the covenants, conditions and restrictions of the development according to charters and bylaws.

Some of the types of residences that can be included in an association, according to real estate homeowner’s association law, include:

  • Homes
  • Condominiums
  • Apartments
  • Townhouses
  • Mobile homes

A real estate homeowner’s association has power over its members. The association can levy fines, assessments, provide services and regulate community wide activities. Real estate homeowner’s law essentially can control all of the regulatory actions that do not fall under the jurisdiction of local governmental law, state law, or federal law. The enforcement of these actions can be carried out via civil law by the homeowner’s association as part of agreeing to live in a community is the either implied or explicit agreement to abide by the association’s rules and regulations. The homeowner’s association law has to be followed by everyone within a townhome, condominium, apartment, or development community. All homeowners within the development or community must also be members of the homeowner’s association. The homeowner’s association in each development has the right to charge the homeowners within the development for certain fees pertaining to the upkeep of the area. Fees are charged for maintaining the pool area, cutting the grass, planting new shrubbery, and even security issues.

Once the real estate homeowner’s association’s power is turned over to the development community members at large, it is comprised of community volunteers that create committees and subcommittees who will preside over the operation of the community pool, the community clubhouse, and any activities that occur within the development. The boards of directors, who are volunteers from within the community, are elected by their fellow homeowners to their positions of power and oversight as well. Per real esate homeowner’s association law, a homeowner’s association must provide the members of its community the opportunity to voice their concerns about decisions being made or not made in regards to the community. It is basically a town hall meeting for one individual community.

The homeowner’s association has the right to create a community watch program such as those known as neighborhood watch groups. This is where volunteers from the development patrol the community on foot or via automobile making sure that their neighborhood is safe from crime and fire. A real estate homeowner’s association helps individual communities manage the common areas, the pools and the security of the development by having a board of directors elected by their fellow peers set the bylaws of the community. The homeowner’s association in each development also creates standards that homeowners need to follow when maintaining the appearance of their home. These standards are part of the bylaws that govern the development. The rules regarding maintaining the appearance of a house is to prevent the property values of the houses around it from dropping. Developments or new construction that requires notice to the board of any renovation to the property within their development are often part of individual homeowner’s agreements. If notice isn’t given to the board, the individual owner wishing to have renovations made to their property will be fined. The board does not supply a contractor, but does require notice, because any augmentation or alteration of a property that is visible to other members will often be required in written request according to the bylaws of the homeowner’s association. A real estate homeowner’s association keeps a community running smoothly and democratically while looking out for the safety and wellbeing of its members.

There are quite a few homeowners’ associations across the country, especially in condominium and townhome developments. One of the largest homeowner’s associations within the United States is the American Homeowner’s Association. The American Homeowner’s Association was founded by Richard J. Roll, the organization’s current President, in 1994. The association offers over 35 different services for homeowners across the country. They help homeowners get the most for their money when purchasing homes and maintaining their homes on a fixed budget.

Are you involved in a dispute with your homeowner’s association? Contact a real estate attorney today who is qualified to give legal counsel regarding real estate homeowner’s association laws.

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