Why Do HOAs and Condo Associations Need Rules?

Believe me when I say – and many wish – that HOAs and Condos would not need to adopt rules. But the truth is that some people do not know how to act in social situations or at home and so rules are needed.

I was at Starbucks the other day and I had to move – TWICE!  My friend and I went outside to enjoy the day. It was beautiful – except for one problem.

A patron with a cute little dog sat in his chair with the dog perched in front of him on the chair seat – dog paws on the table pawing at a piece of coffee cake which the dog was licking up with his tongue – along with the dog owner’s hands pawing at and eating from the same treat.  My friend and I moved to another table so we could have our backs to this disgusting display – and after a not-long-enough-time, the patron got up, let his dog defecate in the bushes, moved to ANOTHER TABLE within our sight line – and resumed the position, all 4 “paws” on the table. I couldn’t help myself. I told the dog “parent” what I thought and that I was pretty sure there were health department laws against that kind of behavior.

This is why rules are needed. Some people just don’t get it.


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4 Responses to Why Do HOAs and Condo Associations Need Rules?
  1. Perry
    November 2, 2011 | 10:15 pm

    i became pres on a board recently, Assoc. has LOW reserves. Management company says we MUST have a reserve study. cost is $3500, I said NO to study – adjust expenses to increase reserve over next 2 years and then have study. Management Company notified the Board that we are in breach of our fiduciary responsibilities and not in complience of Ca. State laws and can be held responsible. I believe that we are being responsible by saving the $3500. What can happen?

    • Beth Grimm
      November 9, 2011 | 5:25 am

      Your manager is right in that all HOAs should have reserve studies done – the law requires it (Civil Code Section 1365, 1365.2.5 and 1365.5(which you can find on my website at http://www.califormiacondoguru.com – the main page). As far as what can happen if you don’t – the board is in violation of the law if there is no reserve study and more than half of the assessments collected are for maintaining, repairing and replacing components. That would be a breach of fiduciary duty and could result in a big special assessment at some point. Expect at the “some point” when things go wrong to be threatened with a lawsuit. Hope your Directors and Officers insurance coverage is paid up.

  2. Deborah Fabos
    November 3, 2011 | 1:33 pm

    Our HOA is asking to amend the newly voted in CC&Rs with a cap of 25% rental units allowed. They now claim it’s at 50% and that’s the reason why condo value has gone down and that there is non-compliance to R&Rs, etc. If the 5 of rentals is below 25% we must submit for approval our intent to rent out our condo. Is this legal? Can they really prevent us from renting out our unit? Also, shouldn’t they go to the owners to get the tentants compliant to R&Rs? They do have other recourse right?

    • Beth Grimm
      November 9, 2011 | 5:20 am

      Yes, the board can propose to owners for voting a provision limiting rentals to 25% (see the article available on my website (www.californiacondoguru.com) under the link on the main page “Lease Limitation Restrictions in California, Are They Legal?”. And if it passes, the board can record and enforce the limitations (assuming there is not a problem with the way it is drafted). And yes, the board should be attempting to enforce the rules when tenants do not comply with the CC&Rs. See the blog I just posted on owner’s rights.