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Subject: Mailbox Maintenance
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04/28/2021 7:45 PM  
Hi, I am president of a 98 unit Condo Association. Our builder installed mailboxes (as a set of 4 per quad on one stand) at the street in front of each quad. Until today, it has been assumed that they sit in a Common Area and the Association would be responsible. A resident wants to paint his mailbox which wouldn't be allowed in any situation but he has declared that the mailboxes are for the single use of each owner and therefore they are limited common. I would probably agree if they were each separate but they are 4 to a post. The Rules, Restrictions and Regulations do not mention mailboxes and the KY Condo Act says
"(4) Any shutters, awnings, window boxes, doorsteps, stoops, porches, balconies, patios, and all exterior doors and windows or other fixtures designed to serve a single unit, but located outside the unit's boundaries, are limited common elements allocated exclusively to that unit." I would think that as a whole, the mailbox unit does not serve only one owner. If you break the mailbox out and leave the posts and ledger as common, that seems weird as well. Our community strives for commonality and I'm not sure that letting owners maintain their own mailboxes would guarantee that. I would like more information if anyone has had this issue.


04/28/2021 9:46 PM  
You should find the answer to your question in your reserve study.


04/28/2021 10:46 PM  
Mailboxes are a bit of a fine line. I would deny their request to paint due to the consistency which HOA's strive for. However, remember mailboxes are part of the USPS delivery system. It's a federal offense to mess with one's mail. There are also certain regulations for mailboxes. Something to explore with the Post office as well.

Let them know that this is a shared common element whether or not it is on the common land. Painting it doesn't fit the aesthetic of the HOA.

Former HOA President


04/29/2021 5:55 AM  
Even if the mailboxes are not common property and are not the responsibility of the association, the association typically still has control over changes like this through the ARC/ARB approval process.

Escaped former treasurer and director of a self managed association.


04/29/2021 8:28 AM  
Even if they are a limited common element (LCE), that does not mean that the unit owner automatically maintains the LCE.

Keep in mind that limited common elements are common elements. The common elements are maintained by the association, unless the maintenance of a particular LCE is assigned to the unit owner in your declaration (or master deed for older condos).

If the maintenance of mailboxes has not been assigned to the unit owner in the declaration, then the unit owner does not maintain them.


04/29/2021 9:16 AM  
OP should read further in the CC&Rs and see what it says about maintenance of limited common elements. Some communities leave that to the homeowner, others make the association responsible.

Also, my reading of the quoted part of the CC&Rs is that limited common elements refers to structures that are part of the condo buildings. (My CC&Rs say that these items must be attached to the unit that they belong to.) This would exclude mailboxes. And my community has cluster mail boxes which are definitely common elements and association responsibility.

I agree that allowing individual owners to paint their own mail boxes makes no sense in a condo community which emphasizes uniform appearance.

Disclaimer: I'm not a lawyer.
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Forums > Homeowner Association > HOA Discussions > Mailbox Maintenance

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