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How to Treat an HOA Owner Who Wants, But May Not Need an Accommodation
January 29, 2016
In this week's tip, we tackle a tough question: Must you accommodate a disabled owner if the accommodation isn't absolutely, positively necessary but is just something helpful to the owner? Here's the back story. An HOAleader.com reader says one of the HOA's owners uses an electronic wheelchair to leave the home. That owner would like permission to attend the annual HOA meeting remotely, even though the building and meeting room are both accessible. And the HOA's bylaws apparently don't provide for remote access. keep reading

What's a Reasonable Accommodation in This HOA's Situation?
January 2016
An HOAleader.com reader asks: "Our HOA is in Pennsylvania. We've already sent out our notice of annual meeting. Proxies may be executed by homeowners who wish to vote but are unable to attend. A young homeowner, who uses an electric wheelchair when she leaves her home, has requested 'remote access' to the annual meeting. keep reading

Does This HOA's Bylaw Amendment Have Any Effect?
January 2016
An HOAleader.com reader asks: "The articles of incorporation of this corporation (association) say a quorum is 51 percent of the voting membership, and no amendment has ever been passed (since 1974) to change that percentage. keep reading

Can You Make Owners Insure Things the HOA is Responsible to Maintain?
December 2015
An HOAleader.com reader asks: "Are there any limits to a board's authority to add rules? Specifically, can a board add a rule to the association rule book that requires homeowners to purchase insurance to cover items the CC&R makes the board or association responsible for repairing or replacing? It would seem the association would be responsible for insuring what the association is responsible for repairing. It would also seem that such an insurance requirement belongs in the CC&R and not in association rules that can be added or amended by a simple board majority." keep reading

Community Limits Sales to Those of German Descent. Seriously? In This Day and Age?
December 18, 2015
In this week's tip, we discuss a New York community's lingering restrictive covenant that actually restricts owners to persons of German descent. In rural Long Island sits Yaphank, where according to The New York Times a Nazi summer camp once hosted parades and nearby streets were named after infamous Nazis. The streets have been renamed, reports the Times, but what still remains is a provision in the community's bylaws requiring owners to be primarily "of German extraction," a clause that has led to the 45-family community nearly all white. keep reading

Former Nazi-Supporting Community Still Enforces Rules on Sales. Is that OK?
December 2015
The New York Times recently highlighted a New York community with a strong Nazi-supporting past whose bylaws restricts owners to those of German descent. Owners have now sued the German American Settlement League, alleging that and other covenant restrictions--like prohibitions against advertising home sales on the open market--violate fair housing laws and keep the community essentially all white. Here we explain the background and offer lessons to other communities. keep reading

HOA Owner Repairs Basement. Waits Years. Seeks Reimbursement. What to Do?
November 27, 2015
A reader has written in and asked how to handle an owner's $8,000 request for basement repairs made in 2008. Yes, basement. And yes, 2008. Our experts say a lot of necessary information is missing. keep reading

More on Who's Responsible for Which HOA Unit Repairs
November 2015
Under what circumstances would an HOA be required to repair basement leaks in single-family homes or townhomes? An HOAleader.com reader has an interesting question. Here we ask our experts to help us answer. keep reading

Easier Enforcement of Your HOA's Rules: Steps to Create Enforceable Rules, Effective Fines, and a Fair Violation Process Easier Enforcement of Your HOA's Rules: Steps to Create Enforceable Rules, Effective Fines, and a Fair Violation Process
HOAleader.com On-Demand Webinar
Enforcing rules doesn't have to be a pitched, tense, and unpleasant battle between your homeowner association board and your homeowners. With some smart planning, you can make enforcing your HOA's rules fairer, quicker, easier, and less stressful. Watch this in-depth webinar led by two community association experts: a lawyer with more than a decade of hands-on experience in advising associations on how to create and enforce rules, along with a veteran association manager with insights on the day-to-day operations of rules enforcement. You'll get practical ideas, systems, and processes you and your condo or HOA board can begin to take advantage of the minute the webinar ends. Watch online instantly upon ordering. keep reading

HOA Developer to Board Control: 5 Things to Do
November 2015
Every association has at least one big transition, and that's from developer control to owner control. It's a crucial time when boards need to quickly get on top of the association's business. "There are certain things to check on when transitioning from a developer- to a resident-controlled entity," says Gregory S. Cagle, a partner at Savrick Schumann Johnson McGarr Kaminski & Shirley in Austin, Texas, and author of Texas Homeowners Association Law. "When the developer controls all aspects of the association, the owners are typically in the dark. And when the association is handed over to the owners, there are a lot of things they have to do." keep reading

HOA Fights Owners and Falls Short. The Painful Lessons
October 30, 2015
In this week's tip, we give you the skinny on a recent Missouri case in which an HOA lost a court fight to enforce its rules. In the case that may cause discomfort for HOA lawyers nationwide, Missouri homeowners won the right to keep a purple playground set their HOA had ordered them to remove. keep reading

Owners Beat HOA in Dispute over Playground Set
October 2015
In a case that may cause discomfort for HOA lawyers nationwide, Missouri homeowners have won the right to keep a purple playground set their HOA had ordered them to remove. Here are the lessons for HOAs nationwide. keep reading

What to Do When HOA Developer isn't Keeping Promises--and Wants to Borrow!
October 2015
An HOAleader.com reader asks, "Our neighborhood in Indiana is seven years old, and the developer has promised a pool and clubhouse for the last four years. He keeps pushing the proposed date back again and again. We have roughly 100 lots, and 44 of them are sold. keep reading

California Balcony Collapse Highlights HOAs' Risk of Lack of Maintenance
October 2, 2015
In this week's tip, we send a warning signal about your balconies and porches. It's dangerous not to stay on top of their maintenance. A California HOA lawyer says there's now increased scrutiny on the state's balconies as a result of a tragic incident in which six people were killed. This isn't just a problem in California. A similar porch collapse happened in Chicago more than 10 years ago, killing 13. keep reading

California HOAs Eye Balconies after Tragedy; You Should, Too
October 2015
A California HOA lawyer says there's now increased scrutiny on the state's balconies as a result of a tragic incident in which six people were killed. This isn't just a problem in California. A similar porch collapse happened in Chicago more than 10 years ago, killing 13. Here's what you need to know about the safety of your limited common elements. keep reading

Is This HOA Board's Insurance Policy Fair to Owners?
August 2015
A Colorado lawyer recently blogged about a condo association that has a $50,000 per-unit deductible on its insurance for water-related incidents, and its policy is to require owners to cover those deductibles. Here we weigh many questions, including whether this is smart in the first place and whether it actually saves the condo much on its insurance premiums. keep reading

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