Beyond the Water: Effectively Managing Lake and Pond Shorelines (CA)

Imagine taking an evening walk as the sun sets across the beautiful lake or pond in your community. The sky is pink and orange, crickets are chirping, and a warm breeze blows across the water. Now, imagine looking down at the steep shoreline in front of you, finding that it’s bare, crumbling, and so unstable […]

Privately-owned pond at Willow Springs Ranch to get 4 acre-feet of water (CA)

A privately-owned, man-made pond at Willow Springs Ranch that some residents of the subdivision community recently worried could dry up will soon receive 4 acre-feet of water, a short-term solution that should sustain the pond and its ecosystem until the next wet winter season arrives, the president of the Willow Springs Homeowners Association said Monday.  […]

Water Conservation Requirement (CA)

With the state of California having issued a mandatory water reduction of 25 percent, many HOAs are wondering how to keep yards looking great. After all, no water typically means dead, brown grass. The good news is that there are a few ways to make a drought resistant landscape to keep everyone happy.   Read the […]

We should go where the water is (AZ)

Arizona’s economy runs on growth. But as the state is forced to make cuts in its water usage, it will have to reconsider what the housing developments built to accommodate that growth look like and even how many more people it can realistically handle.  Read the article………………………..

New Amendment To Ohio Condominium Act Protects Solar Rights

Senate Bill 61 was recently signed by Gov. Mike DeWine. Now law, the bill makes significant changes to the Ohio Condominium Act as well as the Ohio Planned Community Act. The bill, sponsored by Sen. Louis W. Blessing and Sen. Nickie Antonio, provides additional protections for homeowners to install solar panels on their properties in […]

Your guide to HOAs & solar panels: 5 strategies to get approval

In many areas, Homeowners Associations (HOAs) can present significant barriers to homeowners’ ability to install solar.  In 2020, for example, Solar United Neighbors estimated that HOAs wrongly denying residents the ability to go solar had cost Virginia solar contractors more than $7 million in retail solar sales since 2014.   Read the article………………………..

Water-conserving cisterns run afoul of Eldorado rules (NM)

Carol Sanguinetti, the Eldorado community improvement board’s president, wrote in an email that the intention is being misconstrued.  “We are not asking them to remove the cisterns nor are we discouraging water conservation,” Sanguinetti wrote. “We are asking them to comply with the architectural guidelines, which require that the cisterns be screened in some way […]

Water companies, customers struggle (TX)

“Once we identified the severity of the decrease in water pressure, we alerted customers and issued a precautionary boil water notice in accordance with TCEQ regulations. We also increased drought restrictions to Stage 3 to urge water conservation. We remain in constant communication with the Comanche Harbor/Ports O’ Call Homeowners Association and have worked with […]

Hancock Park HOA: The Drought, Our Trees, The Air We Breathe (CA)

Trees are essential to our very existence. Their power alone manifests as the air we breathe – so let’s not take them for granted!  Now that we’re being asked to limit landscape watering, our good sense and the DWP are reminding us that we must still water our trees. Our trees provide shade that lowers […]

Columbus co-op aims to help homeowners install solar panels (OH)

Williams, of Galloway, joined Solar United Neighbors after her experience installing solar panels on her own home, which she described as time-consuming and frustrating.  Williams had to battle with her homeowner’s association, who wanted her to put the panels on the rear of her house, where they would collect far less sunlight.   Read the article………………………

A North Texas community woke up to no water Wednesday morning after supply issues

On Wednesday morning, the water supply was cut off in the Austin Corners neighborhood, which sits off FM Road 549. It was unclear how widespread the issue was.  Sherry London, a member of the Austin Corners homeowners association, was among the homeowners without water Wednesday. She said she contacted RCH and was told that water […]

What Community Associations Can Do to Improve the Drought Crisis

Many U.S. homeowners, particularly in the Southwest, in recent years have observed a change in their water resources. The Colorado River water supply is plagued by overuse, and its two main reservoirs—Lake Mead and Lake Powell—have drained more rapidly than ever before as supply dwindles in large part due to climate change, according to a […]

What new water restrictions could communities face? (NV)

Q:  This week there is major concern within Assembly Bill 356 that was signed last year. Due to the water supply going down every week and lack of rain fall to help the situation how should HOAs handle this grave dilemma? Please explain more about AB356.    Read the Q&A……………………………….

Can an HOA Deny You Solar Panels?

Homeowners associations’ power to stop you from going solar is weakening, but not everywhere.  Read the article……………………………

Installation and Use of Solar Power Systems in North Carolina

If you live in North Carolina, you likely have read or heard stories about HOAs prohibiting members from installing solar panels on their properties or of members being sued by their HOA for doing so. But, can an HOA regulate and prohibit the installation and use of a residential solar power system upon private residential […]

The Law Q&A | Solar energy has a home in most any neighborhood (IL)

Can a homeowner’s association, condominium association or other community interest residential association bar a homeowner from installing solar panels on their roof?  With certain exceptions, no sir, no ma’am, they cannot.   Read the article………………………………

New water law unclear when it comes to communities (NV)

Q: I am the president of our small homeowners association. Our management company is confused as to how to address this new statute. Our homeowners are only responsible for their backyards. The HOA owns the front yards and common areas. It is my understanding the new statute to remove useless grass would pertain to the […]


Recently, the Supreme Court of North Carolina handed down a decision (in Belmont Association, Inc. v. Farwig) which greatly affects the ability of planned communities to regulate the location and placement of solar panels on lots within the community. The ruling does not affect condominium communities created under Chapter 47A or Chapter 47C of the […]

Building a Sustainable Condo Today Involves Designing for the Future

A graduate of my Sustainable Design course at Toronto Metropolitan University contacted me recently for advice. She is working for a real estate developer in the Niagara region of Ontario, about 30 miles west of the falls, building condominium apartments and townhouses. She asked me to review her proposal for the company’s sustainability initiative.    […]

HOA Homefront – Reader questions about solar installations (CA)

Q: I live in a planned development and was told we could not install solar because it would void our roof warranties. Can our management company ban installation of solar because of that reason or do the new regulations override that argument?  Read the Q&A……………………………….

Can an HOA Deny Solar Panels? (NC)

The simple answer is “yes,” but it’s truly more complicated because there are a lot of factors that go into a Homeowners Association (HOA) being allowed to legally deny a residential solar system. There’s a lot of history behind what is considered acceptable or legal to deny a residential solar design.    Read the entire article……………………………….

For Co-ops and Condos, Slow Greening of the Grid Is a Red Flag (NY)

Co-op and condo boards keep hearing that electrifying their buildings — and getting rid of fossil fuels — will be the key to complying with the carbon emission caps that start in 2024 under Local Law 97. Buildings larger than 25,000 square feet, including co-ops and condominiums, that do not meet the caps will face […]

Florida HOAs and Rooftop Solar: Some Restrictions Apply (FL)

Given Florida’s nickname as the Sunshine State, it is only fitting that solar energy would be the state’s most popular and effective source of renewable energy. In fact, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, renewable energy fueled approximately five percent of Florida’s in-state electricity generation in 2020, and almost two-thirds of that came from […]

Friendlier HOA attitude needed for solar, wind

The recent dustup between a homeowner in the Madison suburb of Waunakee and her homeowner’s association (HOA) should serve as a reminder to HOAs across the state that they should be taking a more friendly attitude toward solar and wind installations.   Read the entire article……………………………….

Extreme drought: California communities facing new water restrictions

Drought has come roaring back in the West, bringing with it new water restrictions that are set to impact communities across the region in the coming months. In California, starting June 1, residents are required to limit their outdoor watering to one day a week, facing $2,000 fines per acrefoot of water supplied to the […]

HOA Homefront: Can the board ban solar panels? (CA)

Q: Can a HOA prevent us from placing solar panels on the roof of our townhome? We are in an older condominium association and the roofs are hard, flat shingles that were just replaced. If we agree to be responsible for the repairs needed due to our solar panels (not the ultimate roof replacement in […]

Indiana HOA Solar Panels: House Bill 1196 Has Been Signed

Homeowners associations are known for their strict rules when it comes to architectural changes. If a homeowner wants to add a shed or redo their front porch, chances are they will need to obtain approval from their HOA. This process usually involves going through an application process, which includes submitting documents such as designs and […]

How Your HOA Should Handle Homeowners’ Requests to Install Solar Panels

Green energy, including solar panels, has become increasingly popular over the past several years.  In many communities, that means that residents are interested in installing solar panels and taking advantage of those green energy benefits–in some cases, including substantial cuts to their energy bills.    Read the entire article……………………………….

Homeowners associations hinder solar deployment, despite Wisconsin law

For as long as she can remember, Sherrie Gruder wanted to put solar panels on her home.  In the fall of 2020, Gruder and her partner, Wayne Harris, finally got the chance.  They’d recently moved to a subdivision near Waunakee, and while there were issues with putting solar panels on the roof, there was plenty […]

Rising water rates puts HOA at crossroads (CA)

As San Diegans continue to battle soaring inflation, a proposed hike in water rates could drive the cost of living even higher next year.  Now, one group of homeowners could decide to pay for a big change now, to avoid more increases later.    Read the entire article……………………………….

More Water Restrictions Incoming (CA)

The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (“Water District”) has implemented restrictions limiting outdoor watering effective June 1, 2022, in response to the current drought emergency, following direction from Governor Newsom to increase conservation efforts. The restrictions limit outdoor watering to one day per week for approximately six million people throughout Ventura, Los Angeles, and […]

HOA Homefront: Drought emergency is back; did your community notice? (CA)

California has experienced many drought periods, but in January 2014 the drought situation became sufficiently severe that then-Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of drought emergency.  Soon thereafter, several laws were added to the Davis-Stirling Act, Civil Code Sections 4735 and 4736.   Read the entire article……………………………….

Co-op and Condo Advocates File Lawsuit to Block Local Law 97 (NY)

A coalition of cooperatives and condominiums is suing the city to block New York City’s Local Law 97, which imposes ambitious greenhouse gas emissions caps on most buildings larger than 25,000 square feet, Crain’s reports. The lawsuit, filed Thursday night in state Supreme Court, is led by two Queens cooperatives and their board presidents — […]

Economist to Co-op and Condo Boards: Pick the Low-Hanging Fruit First (NY)

Habitat spoke with the economist Alex Heil, vice president for research at the Citizens Budget Commission, a nonpartisan watchdog on city and state finances. Heil has testified before legislators on the best ways to implement ambitious carbon-reduction laws, including New York City’s Local Law 97, the Climate Mobilization Act.   Read the entire article……………………………….

Town considers delay of window-tinting rules (FL)

A one-year delay on the implementation of an ordinance mandating a restrictive .15 tinting for replacement glass windows, and new windows, garnered some support from members of the Town of Fort Myers Beach Council Monday though no conclusion was reached.   Read the entire article……………………………….