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Author Messages
RobertG38
(Florida)

Posts:6


12/30/2019 4:22 PM  
Can I have a functioning web site while I live in a hoa community. I create Bonsai. I travel to garden shows and festivals to sell my trees and supplies. I make no sales from home. Yes I store pots and supplies there. I have a entire Bonsai garden in my front yard that everyone loves who walks by. I conduct no businesses from home. My neighbor across from me is the president of the HOA. He along with mgmt said I can not have a web site or my name on my rear window of my car. My neighbor runs a handyman service from home car detailing and roof sealing. Can they do this to me? Any help is appreciated
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:8922


12/30/2019 4:31 PM  
Need to know their reasoning for this. Seems kind of odd. You could not have an actual sign out in your yard advertising. Are you using your vehicle as advertising? I've seen a few places put out a strange vehicle and put their company name on it. Which could be construded as "advertising".

Former HOA President
AugustinD


Posts:2411


12/30/2019 4:47 PM  
Posted By RobertG38 on 12/30/2019 4:22 PM
He along with mgmt said I can not have a web site or my name on my rear window of my car.


Ask the President and management to cite the covenant they claim you are violating. Then post it here.

Does either the web site or the ad on your car's rear window give an address within the HOA?
GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:1877


12/30/2019 7:47 PM  
What?

Are you a board member or committee member or community volunteer?
GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:1877


12/30/2019 8:19 PM  
Thinking about this ...

Is the Board saying you cannot have a work vehicle with signage In your driveway or on the street? If so, this is pretty common - assuming your governing docs support the restriction.
RobertG38
(Florida)

Posts:6


12/31/2019 10:30 AM  
I don’t have any signs advertising bonsai sales The back of my car says. Living Art Bonsai and a tree next to it
RobertG38
(Florida)

Posts:6


12/31/2019 10:32 AM  
They state per our perspectives no home based businesses. But like I said the office recommended the hoa president to do work for a neighbor who runs a handyman business from home
RobertG38
(Florida)

Posts:6


12/31/2019 10:34 AM  
I am not on the board nor do I belong to the hoa. It is voluntary membership. I do not volunteer either
GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:1877


12/31/2019 10:46 AM  
You probably should excerpt and post the CCRs for us.

The issue may be the visible nature of the business - it may not be the signage, but rather the for sale plants which are obviously visible.
MarkW18
(Florida)

Posts:382


12/31/2019 11:18 AM  
Posted By RobertG38 on 12/31/2019 10:34 AM
I am not on the board nor do I belong to the hoa. It is voluntary membership. I do not volunteer either



George knows all about turning a voluntary HOA into a mandatory HOA.
SheliaH
(Indiana)

Posts:2882


12/31/2019 11:59 AM  
This is weird - you said you live in a HOA that's voluntary, you're not in it, but the president is trying to say you can't have your business name or website address on your car???? Unless they could show me specific language in the documents saying cars, trucks and such can't have any business advertising, I'd ignore them. You might want to check the documents you got at closing to see if they say anything about you being in the HOA (lots of people on this site have assumed they weren't in a HOA and found out otherwise - the hard way).

If they send you a nastygram threatening legal action of some sort, run this by an attorney (most of us aren't attorneys and can't give you legal advice).
That said, I'm wondering if there's some sort of wacky city or county ordinance regarding this - that would also be strange, but life is strange and HOAs can be stranger, so maybe the guy's trying to make a claim based on that. You may want to call the city or county and find out. Don't be surprised if there isn't anything - the law is still catching up to the world of websites, social media and all that. In the meantime, you might not be selling anything from your home, but it's possible someone, somewhere, thinks your yard looks like some sort of showroom and is attracting too much traffic, and that's what's really driving this.

JohnC46
(South Carolina)

Posts:9053


12/31/2019 12:26 PM  
In my last HOA no vehicles with signage could park overnight in one's driveway. We also banned overnight street parking. Two identical vehicles. One had no lettering on it. One had name of real estate company on rear window. We banned that one.
AugustinD


Posts:2411


12/31/2019 12:43 PM  
RobertG38, I think I would tell the guy that (1) you do not believe that having business supplies at one's home, without selling out of one's home, qualifies as a "home based business"; and (2) any action he takes to try to get you to take down your web site might be unlawful tortious interference with a business. Barring more information, I would ignore whatever else he sends you.
TimB4
(Virginia)

Posts:16627


12/31/2019 2:59 PM  
Shelia,

Voluntary HOAs doesn't mean that there are not covenants.
Voluntary HOAs doesn't mean that the HOA doesn't have the right to enforce said covenants.
Voluntary HOAs simply mean that you may or may not choose to pay dues/assessments and participate in the governance of said HOA.
GenoS
(Florida)

Posts:3495


12/31/2019 3:53 PM  
In a voluntary HOA, I would ignore them. None of the obligations, rights, or responsibilities required by FS 720 (the FL HOA Statute) have any effect whatsoever on an HOA where mandatory assessments are not imposed. I would double-check my deed for restrictions. You can be subject to those and other covenants that run with the land even if there is no mandatory Homeowners Association involved.
SteveM9
(Massachusetts)

Posts:3516


12/31/2019 4:08 PM  
Posted By JohnC46 on 12/31/2019 12:26 PM
In my last HOA no vehicles with signage could park overnight in one's driveway. We also banned overnight street parking. Two identical vehicles. One had no lettering on it. One had name of real estate company on rear window. We banned that one.




what if he worked as a sales guy at a ford dealership. and his car says ford all over it, from the factory. should it be banned?
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:8922


12/31/2019 6:30 PM  
I think his Bonsai "business" reads like a year round yard sale to the neighbors. Not necessarily a "bad" thing but something that doesn't scream attractive. For example, had a neighbor that believe made a living by going to yard sales/flea markets. So there was frequently large or groups of items in the front yard. It came off kind of "hoarder". Several neighbors did not like it. I found out about her business when saw her driving a truck by a Flea Market. Know people whom have like businesses.

So this may be the issue the HOA may be having that it does come across as a "business" which attracts frequent traffic/noise. It's typically okay to have an at home business as long as it's not advertised. What many call "putting a shingle out". So maybe moving the Bonsai Business out of the front view may resolve the issue.

People sale Tupperware all the time but you don't see it hanging out in view...

Former HOA President
MarkW18
(Florida)

Posts:382


12/31/2019 7:02 PM  
Posted By SteveM9 on 12/31/2019 4:08 PM
Posted By JohnC46 on 12/31/2019 12:26 PM
In my last HOA no vehicles with signage could park overnight in one's driveway. We also banned overnight street parking. Two identical vehicles. One had no lettering on it. One had name of real estate company on rear window. We banned that one.




what if he worked as a sales guy at a ford dealership. and his car says ford all over it, from the factory. should it be banned?



I have a RAM 3500 and the license frame has the dealer name AND their website address is on the frame. Should this be banned. I would want people to pay their dues, not have a board who acts like the local Gestapo.
GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:1877


12/31/2019 7:03 PM  
Voluntary HOAs are problematic.

The HOA and the individual property owner might be able to sue for CCR compliance, but between FS 617 and 720 it gets confusing.

I haven’t found a good answer to the very odd circumstance if voluntary HOAs in Florida.
RobertG38
(Florida)

Posts:6


01/03/2020 3:56 PM  
I don’t belong to the hoa. Can they run my life. I don’t conduct business from home I travel to festivals and so forth to sell bonsai and supplies. The president runs a handy man business from his home and receives recommendations from mgmt.
RobertG38
(Florida)

Posts:6


01/03/2020 4:03 PM  
My front yard is a Asian garden displaying Bonsai, niwaki and moss. It is not a store front. I create gardens for friends and family. I take my Bonsai and supplies to festivals and market places to sell. I have been photographed doing so by neighbors he send to spy on me then presented this to mgmt as his proof I run a business from home. These people can not run my life can they?
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:8922


01/03/2020 6:29 PM  
Well there is a difference here. Does the President have a sign or anything on the outside of the home advertising/indicating he is a handyman? Most likely he's not got a front yard full of tools as yard ornaments.

No your not being "spied" on either. Basically even though an Asian garden is beautiful it may not fit into the aesthetics of the rest of the HOA/neighborhood. Which living in a HOA the whole goal is to basically to all look alike and well kept.

Having a business in your Home is okay if your doing it directly indoors and not using the outdoors as you "Showroom". It's also not acceptable to have one that creates traffic or parking issues.

Basically your yard looks like one of those nice Christmas light displays year round. Maybe tone it down by moving it behind the house or a fence. (A fence with HOA approval). You can still have your hobby just not out in the open front yard.

BTW: I LOVE Asian Garden items and have a collection myself. One of my favorite booths at a festival are Asian gardens. So this is not to offend or discourage your business at all. Just don't make it so pronounced and out of place in the front yard...

Former HOA President
GeorgeS21
(Florida)

Posts:1877


01/03/2020 7:33 PM  
Sadly, without a lot more information, governing documents, etc, this likely another dead end discussion.

To me, any advice would be based on significant conjecture.
SteveM9
(Massachusetts)

Posts:3516


01/04/2020 6:33 AM  
Running a business from your home is completely different from being self employed and grabbing supply's from your house to go to a trade show.

As for the photographs, I wouldn't care and would laugh it off.

But like others said..... not enough info on your rules, or what your doing. We are only seeing one side of the problem and its lacking info.
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