What are in the Basic Governing Documents of an HOA?



02:29 pm

Real Estate Lawyer

If you own, or are thinking of buying, a condominium or home in a planned development (“PUD”), you know they are popular places to live. They’re widely available, often affordable, and offer numerous amenities, such as security gates, guards, and private streets, as well as pools, playgrounds, and fitness rooms that all the owners can use.
Because these common amenities must be maintained and regulated, each development is typically run by a homeowner’s association (“HOA”). The Association may have a lot of power over homeowners’ lives – but must also act in accordance with the terms and conditions contained within the governing documents and bylaws.

These governing documents typically include:

  • Articles of Incorporation
  • Bylaws
  • Declaration of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CC&Rs), and
  • Rules and regulations

This article provides a general overview of the purpose and contents of these governing documents.

What’s in the Articles of Incorporation?

Before any property in a condominium or planned development is sold, the developer forms a Condominium or Homeowners’ Association to run it. Each purchases of property in the development automatically becomes a member of the Association.
The articles are typically brief and contain only the basic information about the Association, its name, location and its purpose.

What’s in the Bylaws of the Association

The Association is typically created by filing Articles of Incorporation (“Articles”) for a nonprofit organization with the secretary of state where the development is located.

Once formed, the Association typically adopts a set of bylaws. Bylaws are important: They describe the Association’s rights and responsibilities. For example, the Association is typically responsible to enforce the rules and regulations and to collect assessments. The bylaws may also lay out procedures for creating the annual budget and determining assessment amounts.
Associations are generally run by a board of directors (a “Board”) made up of a certain number of members (owners) elected by the membership at large (all of the owners) during periodic elections. The bylaws typically set forth the length of the terms for the Board members and the procedures for elections.

What’s in the Declaration of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CC&Rs)

The CC&Rs are the most important of the governing documents. They contain the most comprehensive and probably the most important information about the development and its operation. If there is anything in another governing document that conflicts with a provision of the CC&Rs, the CC&Rs win (and the conflicting provisions are considered invalid).

About Stevens & Goldwyn, PA

Condominium and homeowners’ associations need legal advice for conducting their association and representation for issues that come into conflict. Such issues may be resolved through negotiation, mediation, arbitration, or litigation. Common disputes involve issues between unit owners, assessments collection disagreements, construction defects, challenges to condominium amendments of by-laws or other documents, and disagreements with local governments.

It is important to have a legal team in place to protect the rights of the condominium and homeowners association. Our community association attorneys are expert in contract review and contract litigation, and can make sure the best interests of the association are prioritized.

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.