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Subject: common areas
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Author Messages
SteveC11
(Florida)

Posts:1


03/25/2012 5:23 AM  

Should a board be allow to turn our common area soccer field over to a private school for sporting events, under the fact that one member sponsors them?? We paid for upgrades and continue to pay for all maintenance, including 2 employee's for security and parking. This field is only a retention pond and is not designed to handle such use. It is now unusable!
TimB4
(Virginia)

Posts:8998


03/25/2012 6:27 AM  
Hi Steve,

As for the Boards authority to govern the common areas, typically, The Board has full control to establish rules, regulations and fees for common areas. Check your Associations governing documents or State statutes for this authority.

Typically, a member's guests may use the common areas (the member is responsible for their guests actions). Additionally, it's typical for an Association not to limit the number of guests a member may invite onto the property.

Granted, hosting a party and hosting a weekly game are two very different things, but those are the applicable section of the governing documents that would apply.


The issue of should the board allow or not allow something has to be compared to what authority does the board have to do this and what covenants, rules, etc. are in place at the time the boards decision is made.

Based on what you provided and using whats typical for an Association one can conclude:

1) Request made to use the field or not.
2) Board has the authority to adopt rules governing the common area.
3) current rule/covenant allows a members guest to use the common area.
4) current rules do not limit the number of guests

Therefore, without changing the rules and/or other governing documents, the Board would most likely be limited to charging the member for any damage and hold them accountable for their guests actions if the guests violate the existing rules.

If the employees are part of the normal services provided by the Association, then there would be no additional charge. If the employees are hired specifically for the games, then, in my opinion, that cost should be paid by the member who is inviting the guests.


What can you do about it:

Read and understand your governing documents to understand the limitations the board has on it's ability to govern this action.

Request a hearing with the Board on this topic to address your concerns that the extra use is causing undue damage and the costs for maintenance should be shared by those using the facility. Perhaps propose use fees, etc.

Start a campaign to restrict the number of guests each member may have (would likely require amending the CC&Rs).

Start a recall campaign of the board members supporting such actions (make sure you have volunteers to replace them).

Gather support and be elected to the board so you are part of the decision process.

Gather support and get others elected to the board that agree with your opinion on this issue so they can make the changes you desire.


Hope this helps,

Tim




SusanW1
(Michigan)

Posts:5202


03/25/2012 6:45 AM  
We let the area cub scouts use our little community center until they made such a mess and failed to watch the boys. We had to pull the free facility offer.

What do you mean it is "unuseable"?? Is it a soccer field?
JamesG
(Connecticut)

Posts:58


03/25/2012 10:48 AM  
I presume that this field is covered under the liability coverage of the association's master insurance policy. I think that the risk of injury to non-resident players could be your largest financial exposure. I would consult with your insurance carrier to get their position on coverage and the potential impact on future premiums if a claim should be made.

Jim
JanetB2
(Colorado)

Posts:1962


03/26/2012 8:58 PM  
Hi Steve ... welcome to the forum.

I agree with James who posted above in that what is the HOA's liability if someone is injured? LOL ... anymore everyone is willing to sue for just about anything and if a player or someone not a member of the HOA (parents and guests) are injured in any way who is going to pay the legal bills? Is this use of your HOA property covered under the insurance policy?

Also, the HOA needs to realize the the homeowners own a portion of that property equally via the CCR's and the assessments paid for maintenance and their desires have top priority.



SusanW1
(Michigan)

Posts:5202


03/27/2012 5:54 AM  
If this is an organized team, and it sounds like it since it's a private school's team, they would have their own insurance.

The OP is still not answering the question: this is a soccer field, so why is it now unuseable?

PS - they SHOULD pay something for rental of the field or the staff needed for maintenance for the field.

JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:3988


03/27/2012 6:27 AM  
All

I know some HOA Clubhouses can be rented out for functions so I assume the insurance/liability issues might not be that different in renting out a soccer field.

Not being able to see the area, I would be hesitant to say sure go ahead.

John
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