HOA Homefront: Readers ask about repairs and poor pool maintenance (CA)

Q: I’m in dispute with my association. The original doors facing the outside of my condo have extensive dry-rot. I’ve read the association’s matrix regarding the responsibility issue, and I believe it spells it out, but I’m getting denied my request for repairs. Is this the responsibility of the association to fix and/or maintain?  Read the […]

Whose Rights Should Our Laws Protect? (CA)

AB 3182 was a poison pill for condominium owners, reducing our ability to maintain the long-term residential nature of our communities by allowing more homes to be rented for shorter periods of time. Some owners might have been pleased by this, but a presumed application of this law serves a different constituency entirely.  Read the entire […]

HOA Homefront: When can a board amend CCRs and bylaws? (CA)

CC&Rs and bylaws are governing documents that typically can be amended only by a vote of the HOA membership.  However, there are some narrow circumstances under the Davis-Stirling Common Interest Development Act in which a board of directors is empowered by statute to make certain limited amendments to CC&Rs or bylaws.   Read the Q&A………………………………….

San Marcos Trout Club is County’s First Firewise USA Community (CA)

The San Marcos Trout Club (SMTC), a neighborhood of 37 homes in the Santa Barbara foothills, is the first community in Santa Barbara County to be approved as a Firewise USA participant by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).   Read the entire article……………………………….

HOA Homefront – A law that came too late (CA)

During the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, HOAs were presented with a conundrum: Local health authorities prohibited gatherings of more than a few unrelated persons; however, HOA boards were required by the Open Meeting Act to have meetings that included the option of personal physical attendance, even if most members chose to participate telephonically or […]

Condo questionnaire causing some boards to boycott Fannie, Freddie financing (CA)

Can the condo world live without mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and their more affordable financing terms?  A fast-developing crisis is hitting condominium association boards and property management firms across the country tasked with filling out “draconian” questions required of HOA property management companies.   Read the entire article……………………………….

HOA Homefront: Director proxies, no minutes and election challenges (CA)

Q: One of our board members sometimes is not available to attend meetings either in person or telephonically and has asked if he could submit a written approve or disapprove sealed proxy for agenda items when the board votes on them in the meeting.    Read the Q&A…………………………………

Flames Rips Through Diamond Bar Condo Complex (CA)

The blaze was first reported at 2:25 a.m. in the 300 block of South Prospectors Road, near Golden Springs Road. Cell phone video showed huge flames and smoke engulfing the complex.    Read the entire article……………………………….

What to do about cracked (parking) ramp?

Question: Robert, I live in Santa Clarita in a homeowner’s association where I am a board member. We have a parking ramp, which takes us down inside our garage. I’ve submitted photos to show two cracks on top of the ramp and the bottom. There is water entering these cracks, causing leaks to the below […]

Land lease fee disparities divide Oceana senior community (CA)

Residents of the Oceana senior community are divided over a controversial community measure that will equalize land lease fees for everyone living in the community, lowering monthly rent payments for the majority of members while raising monthly payments for others.   Read the entire article……………………………….

HOA Homefront – An election tie and another has no elections (CA)

Q: We had an election where three people ran for two positions and the second and third place vote-getters tied. Without giving an explanation or detailed procedure they stated that they had to resolve it at a later meeting because candidate 3 was not in attendance.   Read the Q&A……………………………….

California Wildfires’ Impact HOA Insurance

Severe weather and natural disasters have been a challenge for communities in different parts of California for decades, from droughts to earthquakes to wildfires. The state’s most recent wildfire season is putting pressure on insurance companies to cut back on coverage to homeowners.   Read the entire article……………………………….

HOA Homefront: Is ‘open forum’ ever truly open? (CA)

Q: Recently an owner had a matter which she wanted to bring up during the “Homeowner’s Forum” but she could not attend. She sent an email to the association delegating me to share with the board her concerns. At the meeting, the president shut me down and said only people present could speak and that […]

HOA Homefront: Tips before starting major repairs on your community (CA)

One of the greatest challenges HOAs periodically face is major reconstruction.  Whether a new roof, balcony rehabilitation or other major repairs, the typical volunteer board and professional manager are not regularly involved in hiring for such work. Therefore, many potential pitfalls can contribute to extra costs or risks. Before sending the contract to legal counsel […]

Lake California residence worried about fire evacuations (CA)

People living in Lake California a community just north of Red Bluff and in Tehama County, only have one route in and out.  “It’s tree-lined, there are heavy ditches and a fire apparatus would not be able to come up that road and have residents exit safely,” said Sharon Crawford, Lake California Property Owner’s Association […]

The Woolsey fire burned their homes. Now this community has its own firefighting crew (CA)

The local Homeowners Association has contributed roughly $25,000 to the new fire department, and neighbors have thrown in hundreds of thousands more. Areas with fewer resources will likely face bigger obstacles that sets them apart from their wealthy neighbors, adding to the divide already being felt when disasters strike.   Read the entire article……………………………….

HOA Homefront: Celebrating 600 columns with no calls for court action

I’m excited to share the 600th column of “HOA Homefront,” which was inaugurated in March 2005. Except for a hiatus in 2010 and 2011, the column has been published continuously for 17 years and now appears in most of the major newspapers and digital news websites in Southern California.   Read the entire article……………………………….

Safety Fears at Aging San Leandro Condo (CA)

Persistent leaks, mold, sagging ceilings and termites are among the problems cited by condominium owners in San Leandro, who expressed concerns that moisture could corrode and compromise their steel-reinforced building.   Read the entire article……………………………….

California HOAs/Community Associations Have Been Hit With Massive Increases in Premiums and Outright Cancellation// Call to Action

Many California community associations are dealing with massive and significant increases in their insurance premiums. These increases were not anticipated and as a result they are unbudgeted requiring that boards levy emergency special assessments, borrow from reserves or otherwise find the money to pay the increased cost of insurance.   Read the entire article……………………………….

HOA Homefront: Are secret recordings and no meetings legal? (CA)

Q: What are the HOA manager and board responsibilities for the homeowners’ portion of the board meeting? Presently, virtual sessions are done with requests via email. Our manager crafted defensive, aggressive responses and sent them before the meeting even happened. I think homeowners would have liked us to appear to listen.    Read the Q&A………………………………………

Engineer Proposes Slashing Scope of Millennium Tower Pile Upgrade (CA)

Based on further structural analysis and the success of a pilot program that installed three permanent piles using modified procedures, the structural engineer-of-record for the delayed perimeter pile upgrade of the 645-ft-tall Millennium Tower in San Francisco has proposed a significantly reduced scope for the project that he says would still arrest settlement and allow […]

May a homeowners’ association (HOA) restrict a property owner from renting their property for a short-term when they purchased it before the HOA adopted the restriction? (CA)

Facts: An owner purchases a parcel of property in a common interest development (CID) governed by a homeowners’ association (HOA). The owner rents out their property on a short-term basis less than 30 days to tenants, as authorized by the covenants, conditions and restrictions (CC&Rs). Later, the HOA amends the CC&Rs to restrict owners in […]

Disturbing peace: Residents say pot growers disrupt tranquility (CA)

“The county is calling these legal grows commercial (thereby allowing commercial business in here),” said Porter. “Yet a main tenet of our (Covenant, Conditions and Restrictions) is no undue use of roads. The county’s ordinance for pot growing reads as though it was written by the cannabis lawyers.”   Read the entire article……………………………….

HOA Homefront: What community managers want for the holidays (CA)

As we give gifts to loved ones and friends during the holiday season, most HOA members probably don’t consider giving to their community manager – the person who gets the calls when plumbing or roofs leak, somebody acts up at the pool, or gates malfunction.   Read the entire article……………………………….

Bay Area rain causes building safety concerns (CA)

Homeowners and businesses in the Bay Area are dealing with the aftermath of the severe storm.  KRON4’s Gayle Ong reports those living in newer buildings in the city are experiencing floods, leaks, and other water damage.     Read the entire article……………………………….

Pleasanton restricts smoking at townhomes, condominiums (CA)

Smoking will be banned in all common areas and on private balconies or decks of townhomes, condominiums and buildings with three or more attached homes in Pleasanton beginning next summer.   Read the entire article……………………………….

Pleasanton Looks At Expanding Smoking Restrictions To Condos, Townhomes (CA)

The Pleasanton City Council on Tuesday will consider restricting smoking in townhomes, condominiums, and buildings with three or more attached units.  One of the council’s stated work plan goals is restricting smoking for multi-family ownership residences to address health impacts of secondhand smoke. The city is proposing a new chapter to its municipal code, applying […]

HOA Homefront – How should we invest HOA funds? (CA)

Q: HOAs face a financial issue with interest rates so low. My HOA and the vast majority of other HOAs play it safe with CDs and money market accounts for investment. I am opposed to this. Now that we are averaging something well below 1.5%, the risk to HOAs is enormous.   Read the entire article……………………………….

Between a Rock and a Hard Place (insurance)

There has been quite a bit of chatter about how insurance premiums for common interest developments have increased dramatically over the last year. Communities that are in wildfire hazard areas are faced with non-renewals and in many cases are having to turn to the excess and surplus insurance markets. If they can find coverage, it […]