What Does HOA Regulate? What Does It Not?

What Is an HOA?

HOA stands for “Homeowner’s Association,” and it has several duties. It is the entity that maintains the property’s grounds and provides residents with several amenities. These associations even hold barbecues and Christmas parties for residents to enjoy.

What Can It Regulate?

An HOA may regulate the following things:

  • Home-based businesses
  • Tool sheds
  • Noise
  • Mailboxes
  • Basketball hoops and swing sets
  • Landscaping
  • Shrubs, hedges and fences
  • Exterior paint, siding and shingles
  • Pets

HOAs maintain the common areas in a condominium complex, so they charge fees for this purpose. If the complex needs renovations or repairs, the association can levy assessments for these purposes. If a resident refuses to pay these fees, he or she may be forced into foreclosure proceedings.

Before anyone purchases a home, they must consult with a South Florida HOA attorney. You need to know what the association is going to regulate before you agree to move into the community. A Coral Springs HOA attorney will be able to answer all of your questions about this topic.

What Are they not Allowed to Regulate?

The HOA cannot do several things, including the following:

The HOA is not allowed to discriminate against you. Because of the Fair Housing Act, an HOA is not permitted to take discriminatory measures against you. This means that they cannot fine you because of your race or prevent you from purchasing a home. The board cannot throw you out because you are wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat or because it doesn’t agree with your religion. If your HOA is discriminating against you for any of these reasons, be sure to discuss the matter with a Coral Springs HOA lawyer.

The HOA cannot outlaw your clothesline. Known as “solar drying,” several states protected this right with legislation.

The HOA cannot give you frivolous fines. An HOA cannot give you a fine unless it is written into the association’s rules and bylaws. If your HOA is telling you that you will be fined if you don’t trim your rosebush, make sure that there is an ordinance against rose bushes in the covenants, conditions and restrictions or CC&Rs.

If you can’t find the restriction in the CC&Rs, you may need to appeal the HOA’s decision. You can consult with an HOA lawyer South Florida before you attend your hearing. This process requires that you present evidence to the board, and an attorney can help you do this. The HOA may decline to charge the fine if you can present a sound argument against it.

The HOA cannot make arbitrary decisions. If someone comes to tell you that you have to make any changes, simply ask if these changes are in the CC&Rs. If your HOA decides to make any changes to the CC&Rs, it has to follow its own rules that are written in the CC&Rs.

In the event that your HOA isn’t following its own rules, you may request that they send you documents concerning the matter. Also, start attending the public meetings.

The HOA cannot order you to remove your dish. The FCC enacted the Over-the-Air Reception Devices Rule. Your HOA may think that your dish is an eyesore, but it cannot order you to remove it. These restrictions may still be written into the CC&Rs because the CC&R was written before the FCC enacted this rule. So, make sure that you let the board know that this is unenforceable. If you are experiencing difficulties with your HOA, an HOA lawyer Coral Springs will be able to help you. Contact us at Bakalar & Associates today. Our South Florida HOA lawyer will help you straighten out the mess you are currently in with your HOA.