HOA Community Rules in Charlotte
Homeowners association | Charlotte can be both a blessing and a curse. While monthly dues can be tough to swallow on top of a mortgage, they provide for amenities that most homeowners would not be able to afford on their own.
In addition, homeowners have certain legal rights outlined in the governing documents of their community. The following are a few of the most important ones.
The CC&Rs (Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions) are the rules that govern a homeowners association. These restrictions are meant to keep a neighborhood in good condition. If a homeowner violates these rules, they may be fined or denied access to community amenities. However, homeowners have rights that they should be aware of.
Typically, the CC&Rs spell out specific specifications for construction projects and setbacks. They also establish processes and committees for reviewing any new construction plans. Moreover, they can outline rules regarding how the property is to be used by owners. For example, the CC&Rs might prohibit owners from renting their homes for short-term stays or listing them on Airbnb.
The CC&Rs must comply with federal and state law. Additionally, the governing documents must have the procedure for amending or adding new rules. Homeowners can exercise the right to question any changes to these rules if they feel they are unjust or discriminatory. They can also challenge any disciplinary actions that are deemed unfair.
In some cases, the governing documents include more detailed provisions, such as policies or board resolutions. These are positions formally adopted by the board that establish how a given issue or problem will be handled now and in the future.
In addition, HOAs must make financial reports and other records reasonably available to homeowners on request. This requirement stems from North Carolina state law and applies to any association that’s incorporated as a non-profit organization under the Planned Community Act.
It’s also worth requesting any information an HOA has about lawsuits that were filed. Like conflicts and rule violations, lawsuits aren’t uncommon in an HOA, so you’ll want to know how well the association resolves issues. You should also ask current residents how well the HOA’s board functions together. Do they typically handle differences in opinion and petty politics in a productive manner? If not, this could be a red flag.
Rules of Conduct
When evaluating an HOA, you should ask about the board’s governance style. For instance, how well do they resolve conflicts? Is the board characterized by egotism, power plays or petty politics?
Ask about meeting procedures and how the board votes on issues. Check for a procedure that allows members to propose changes in the rules. Also, find out how the HOA handles issues like a sudden increase in fees or special assessments.
Some homeowners are unhappy with HOA rules that restrict their freedom of expression, such as requiring that they display certain home decorations, such as an American flag. Others worry about a future in which the HOA will impose fines or other penalties. However, in reality, the association can only do so much, such as limiting where residents can place political signs during elections. If the association does not respect homeowners’ rights, they may file a lawsuit. In these situations, the association will be forced to find another solution.
Covenant enforcement is a key aspect of HOA governance. It helps to ensure that governing policies are consistent and fair to all homeowners. A common mistake that many homeowners associations make when enforcing covenants is allowing personal relationships or political agendas to interfere with their decisions. This can create animosity among residents who feel like they are being singled out for punishment. Ideally, board members and architectural control committees should remain neutral during inspections and follow the association’s established violation process when inspecting homes.
Most first-time covenant violators can get away with a simple warning. This can help to keep the community looking its best and prevent future violations. Ultimately, the board’s obligation to enforce covenants is a legal one, and failing to carry out that obligation can have real consequences for property values. Therefore, it is important to understand the different options for enforcing covenants in your community. This includes requesting compliance, levying monetary penalties, performing “self-help,” and pursuing legal action.