A Homeowners' Association is comprised of two or more homeowners that belong to a mandatory membership organization for the maintenance of commonly owned real estate and improvements and regulations of privately owned property in a given area. New community developments are often required to form a nonprofit corporation charged with maintaining common areas within the development.
Collecting unpaid assessments, enforcing the association's governing documents, handling disputes and dealing with contractors are just a few of the issues HOAs face daily.
The bylaws are the guidelines for the operation of the HOA. They define the duties of the various offices of the Board of Directors, the terms of the Directors, the membership's voting rights, required meetings and notices of meetings, and the principal office of the association, as well as other specific items that are necessary to run the HOA.
HOAs can assess mandatory fees for common property maintenance. Under Washington law, the HOA can place a lien upon an owner's property for failure to pay assessments, and may foreclose upon that lien if the owner still refuses to pay past homeowner's assessments. A lien may also be placed on the property for failure to pay fines properly imposed upon the owner; however the foreclosure process for foreclosing upon a lien for fines is more complicated and cumbersome.
HOA rules and regulations can govern many different things in the homeowner's area such as house design, clothes lines, lawns, fences, animals, exterior color, mailboxes, swing sets, outdoor lights, TV antennas, garbage cans, views, etc. Learn more
Known as CC&Rs, the term usually refers to a written recorded declaration which sets forth certain covenants, conditions, restrictions, or rules established by the HOA to create uniformity of buildings and use within a group of lots.