How to Approach Disagreements With Your Community or Homeowner’s Association

11.6.2017

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03:28 pm

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When you purchase a property in a community that’s governed by a homeowners’ association (HOA), you agree to abide by its rules. If for example, you bought a newly built home in a development, or a condominium or townhouse, such community rules probably apply to you.

Where do these rules come from? The property developer usually sets up the HOA and its rules, but residents later have the power to join the HOA board an either enforce or amend the rules (depending on the procedures set forth in the community’s bylaws).

Review Your HOA’s Rules

Your HOA community’s rules for homeowners to follow are most likely set forth in a document referred to as the Declaration of Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions (CC&Rs). New buyers are ordinarily given a copy of these for review before they finalize the sale so that they know what they’re getting into.

Typical CC&Rs go a lot farther than merely prohibiting bad behavior. They are meant to help maintain the condition, value, and in many instances uniformity of the properties within the association. For example, the CC&Rs might state whether homeowners may erect fences or laundry lines, whether they may hang flags, what their obligations are regarding lawn-mowing and snow removal, what type or color of curtains they may put up, what pets are allowed, and much more.

Before protesting any HOA action against you, make sure to review the CC&Rs and see whether you own actions were allowable or were done in violation of the rules.

Keep Up with HOA Rule Changes

The rules in your community can change, and you might be living under different rules from when you moved in. Rule changes generally occur at periodic meetings of the HOA board, which is typically made up of volunteer homeowners from within the community.

Residents can, and arguably should attend these meetings. By doing so, you can voice your opinion and keep up with current issues affecting the HOA and any changes to the rules. You might even want to join the HOA board.

Consider Ways to Achieve Compromise in a Dispute with an HOA

If you notify your HOA that you’re having a problem with its rules or with another homeowner, the HOA may (depending on your state’s law) be obligated to arrange for mediation or arbitration. You might be able to work out a compromise or initiate an amendment to the rules.


 

The Florida HOA lawyers at Stevens & Goldwyn, P.A. are experts in HOA litigation, and commercial litigation. They specialize in representation for homeowners associations, assessment collection, foreclosures, civil litigation, and more.Stevens & Goldwyn, P.A. is located in Plantation, FL and provides services throughout Florida, including Fort Lauderdale, Miami, Palm Beach, Plantation, Pembroke Pines, Miami Beach, Pompano Beach, Hollywood, Aventura, and more.

Arrange a free, no-obligation consultation, where you can discuss your legal concerns with a partner of our firm. We look forward to answering your questions and seeing how we can meet your legal needs. Call us at 954-476-2680 or contact us online today.

Arrange a Free Consultation

Through a free, no-obligation consultation, you can discuss your legal concerns with a partner of our firm. We look forward to answering your questions and seeing how we can meet your legal needs.
Call 954-476-2680 or contact us online today.