What is a homeowner’s association?
It is a non-profit corporation registered with the State and managed by a duly elected Board of Directors. Its purpose is to maintain all common areas and to govern the community in accordance with the provision of the legal documents: CC&R’s, Bylaws, and Articles of Incorporation. The governing legal documents for the association may be viewed online within the Documents page of this site. The corporation is financially supported by all members of the homeowners association. Membership is both automatic and mandatory.
What are the CC&R’S?
The Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CC&R’s) are the governing legal documents that set up the guidelines for the operation of the planned community as a non-profit corporation. The CC&R’s were recorded by the County recorder’s office of the County in which the property is located and are included in the title to your property. Failure to abide by the CC&R’s may result in a fine to a homeowner by the Association. The governing legal documents for the association may be viewed online within the Documents and Forms section of this site.
What are the Bylaws?
The Bylaws are the guidelines for the operation of the non-profit corporation. The Bylaws define the duties of the various offices of the Board of Directors, the terms of the Directors, the membership’s voting rights, required meetings and notices of meetings, and the principal office of the Association, as well as other specific items that are necessary to run the Association as a business. The Bylaws for the association may be viewed online within the Documents and Forms section of this site.
What is the Board of Directors?
The Homeowner’s Association is a corporation and therefore a governing body that is required to oversee its business. The Board of Directors is elected by the homeowners, or as otherwise specified in the bylaws. The limitation and restrictions of the powers of the Board of Directors is outlined in the Association governing documents found within the Documents and Forms section of this site.
Are there any other rules?
Most associations have developed Rules and Regulations as provided for in the CC&R’s and adopted by the Board of Directors. Rules are established to provide direction to the homeowners for common courtesies with regard to parking, vehicles, pets and park use hours, etc. In addition, your Association will adopt Architectural Guidelines with procedures for submitting requests to make exterior changes to your home. Such changes may include patio covers, decks, landscaping, exterior color changes or extensive interior changes and additions. These rules and guidelines are set up to maintain the aesthetic value and integrity of the community on behalf of all owners, and hopefully protect the market value of your investment as well. Violations of these rules may result in action by the Board of Directors and a fine. In addition, if you proceed with an exterior improvement or change, without written approval of the Board of Directors, or Architectural Committee, as applicable, you will be required to remove or correct the alteration and/or be fined for the violation.
What is my assessment?
The assessment is the periodic amount due from each homeowner to cover the operating expenses of the common area and provide for reserve funds for replacement of common facilities in future years. Your assessments are due on January 31 of each year. Statements will be sent for assessments as a reminder of the amount due.
How is the amount of my assessment determined?
The budget is set upon specific guidelines for utilities, landscaping, administration, etc. Reserve funds are monies set aside for future expenses due to the life expectancy of certain items: lighting, irrigation systems, fences, park equipment, etc. These amounts are then divided by the number of units in our development. Subsequent budgets are developed by the Board of Directors and adjusted periodically to meet anticipated expenses.
Will my assessment go up?
There is no concrete answer to this. Typically the Civil Code provides for annual increases, but not to exceed 15 percent per year without the vote of the membership. The Board of Directors may approve an increased budget, increasing your assessment up to this percentage in order to cover increased costs of operating and maintaining the common area and sufficient reserve funds.
What happens if I don’t pay my assessment?
The maintenance and management services incurred by the Association are dependent upon timely receipt of the assessments due from each homeowner. Late payments will result in a late charge as assessments are due January 31 of each year. In addition, the CC&R’s allows the Association to charge late charges and interest and proceed with a lien on your property, or foreclosure proceeding for nonpayment of assessments.