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Subject: Starting a HOA in an existing neighborhood
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SonnyP
(Washington)

Posts:2


09/27/2006 4:09 PM  
I live in Washington State in a neighborhood with no HOA, but I would like to start one. Does anybody know if this is possible, and if so, how would I go about it. Also, does anybody know of any resources that address this kind of problem?
RogerB
(Colorado)

Posts:4896


09/28/2006 8:33 AM  
Sonny, if you do not have a Declaration of CC&Rs than you can only try to create a "social group" with interested neighbors. This can be done by getting the neighbors together, creating By-laws, determining what restrictions and dues are required to join, and electing officers.
SonnyP
(Washington)

Posts:2


09/28/2006 10:18 AM  
There are some specific CC&Rs addressing code compliance, temporary dwellings, completion time, size of homes, reflective finishes, building heights, roofs, colors, antennas, garbage and trash, visibility of storage tanks, fence heights, signs, vehicle repairs, and height of trees. The CC&Rs last for thirty years with automatic 10-year extensions "unless an instrument signed by the majority of the owners has been recorded, agreeing to change said covenants in whole or in part". Quoting, "Enforcement of these covenants is by a design committee consisting of the owners of each lot or their designees." It goes on to say that that "Enforcement of these covenants, conditions, and restrictions shall be by proceeding at law or in equity against any person or persons violating or attempting to violate any covenant and such proceeding shall be to enjoin violation and/or to recover damages. Any member of the design committee shall have standing to enforce these covenants on behalf of the committee.

So does this mean I can get the majority of the owners to agree to change the covenants in order to create a homeowners' association?
RogerB
(Colorado)

Posts:4896


09/29/2006 6:55 AM  
Sonny, you do not need to amend the Covenants to organize the association if your Covenants state that each owner is a member and has one vote per lot. I presume your CC&Rs create the opportunity to establish the association. What you need to do now is to have a meeting, setup By-laws, and then elect Board members and officers. You can also consider incorporating. You did not say whether your CC&Rs are setup to have manditory assessments. Without these the HOA has no funds to enforce compliance to restrictions in the CC&Rs.

Perhaps the Developer established the association and incorporated and that organizational structure vanished through time. If so, you could start with the existing By-laws.

JudyW
(California)

Posts:1


10/14/2006 6:20 AM  
We have CC&R's attached and recorded to 50 parcels by the developer. These were recorded in 1979. There never was a committe established and the developer can not be found. How do I form a committee and enforce the CC&R's in my community? I live in the Los Angeles area. Help!
RogerB
(Colorado)

Posts:4896


10/14/2006 6:41 AM  
Posted By JudyW on 10/14/2006 6:20 AMThere never was a committe established and the developer can not be found. How do I form a committee and enforce the CC&R's in my community? I live in the Los Angeles area. Help!

Obviously you do not have manditory assessments so it will be difficult to enforce violations of restrictions. You can form a "voluntary HOA" in which each owner who wishes to participate and pay due may chose whether or not to join. If it is formed then volunteers can inspect the subdivision and ask owners to correct violations but you have no funds to take them to court.

To form a voluntary HOA organize interested neighbors; give all owners a notice that a meeting will be held to form the association; if there is sufficient interest at the meeting you can appoint a chairperson to run the meeting and establish a committee to write draft By-laws; establish a date for the next meeting at which the By-laws will be approved, dues established, and officers elected.
HolleyW
(Kentucky)

Posts:2


10/19/2006 3:06 PM  
We also would like to start a HOA in KY. We live in a resort area and the developer is no longer available. We had a meeting and everyone at the meeting was interested in some kind of rules. We have set up a comettee to look into a HOA. We have deed restiction filed with the county. Where do we start?
TraciR1
(Virginia)

Posts:3


10/23/2006 8:13 PM  
I live in a recently developed neighborhood in VA. We are zoned A-1, an agricultural district. The developers presented most of the homeowners with the CCRs when they signed the contract on their lot. However, the developers never recorded the CCRs at the county or did anything to set up an HOA prior to dividing the lots. They sent a letter out to all the current owners (some of which are not original owners) back in the spring saying that in order for the CCRs to go into effect, everyone had to sign the CCRs and return them so they could be recorded. That never happened.

Now, we are concerned what could happen to our neighborhood on the lots that have not been developed yet. In addition, we have a private road. At this time, we are looking into establishing our own CCRs as well as establishing an HOA.

Can we do that? If so, what is the process?
RogerB
(Colorado)

Posts:4896


10/23/2006 9:06 PM  
Traci, since the Developer still owns lots they can still establish a Declaration by get notorized signatures of all homeowners approving the proposed Declartion AND then filing the Declaration with the County Clerk. It could benefit the current homeowners by helping the Developer get those signatures. Otherwise, you will need to get voluntary contributions to maintain the private road. And the undeveloped lots may become eyesores.
TraciR1
(Virginia)

Posts:3


10/24/2006 10:46 AM  
One developer owns lots, but the other does not. Does that make a difference in our ability to have the developer get the Declaration recorded?

What about setting up an HOA? What is the process for doing that?
RogerB
(Colorado)

Posts:4896


10/24/2006 1:26 PM  
Traci, I think you are confusing the Developer with the builders. Usually there is only one Developer; there can be several builders. If the developer still owns lots that makes it easier because there are that many less homeowners who need to provide notorized signatures approving the Declartion which the Developer files.

The Declaration sets up the authority and normally controls the Board of Directors until most lots are sold. Get with them about this and establishing By-laws and incorporating. Once By-laws are in place follow them to call a meeting and elect new Board members as specified in the By-laws. Of course all of this may be possible by to do by the owners without the help of the Developer.
TraciR1
(Virginia)

Posts:3


10/24/2006 3:31 PM  
In our case, there was a joint venture with respect to developing. In the middle of selling off lots, the developers got into a dispute and ending up dividing the remaining lots equally between themselves.

One developer already sold all his lots. The other (in this case is both a developer and a builder) still owns 3 lots. The rest have been sold.
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