What does a "management company" do and how can I reach them if they manage my association?
A management company is contracted by the Board of Directors to provide services they deem essential to their association, such as collection of assessments, supervisions of contractors, obtaining bids for contracted services, producing financial statements and election reports, as well as a general clearing house for problem solving, communications with homeowners and the Board of Directors. The management company reports directly to the Board and all decisions are made by a majority vote of the Board of Directors. You may contact Bayside Management by calling 415-383-8400 or by email at email@example.com.
What is a homeowner's association?
It is a non-profit corporation registered with the State and managed by an elected Board of Directors. Its purpose is to maintain all common areas and to govern the community in accordance with the governing legal documents --CC&R's, Bylaws, and Articles of Incorporation. The corporation is financially supported by all homeowner association members and membership is both automatic and mandatory.
What are the CC&Rs?
The Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CC&Rs) are the governing legal documents that set up the guidelines for the operation of the association. The CC&Rs were recorded by the County recorder's office of the County in which the property is located and are included in the title to your property. Failure to abide by the CC&Rs may result in a hearing and a possible fine to a homeowner by the Association.
What are Bylaws?
The Bylaws cover the guidelines for the operation of the non-profit corporation. The Bylaws define the duties of the various offices of the Board of Directors, the terms of the Directors, the membership's voting rights, required meetings, notices of meetings, and the principal office of the Association, as well as other specific items that are necessary to run the Association as a business.
What is the Board of Directors?
The Board of Directors are the elected body charged with running the association. The Board of Directors is elected by the homeowners, or as otherwise specified in the bylaws. The powers and limitations of the Board of Directors is outlined in the Association governing documents.
Are there any other rules and regulations?
Most associations have adopted Rules and Regulations that have been approved by the Board of Directors. Rules are established to provide direction to the homeowners for common courtesies with regard to parking, vehicles, pets, pool use hours, trash placement, etc. In addition, your Association will adopt Architectural Guidelines with procedures for submitting requests to make exterior changes to your home. Such changes may include patio covers, decks, landscaping, exterior color changes, or extensive interior changes and additions. These rules and guidelines are set up to maintain the aesthetic value and integrity of the community on behalf of all owners, and hopefully protect the market value of your investment as well. Violations of these rules may result in action by the Board of Directors.
What can I do if I am having a problem with a neighbor for a violation of the Rules and Regulations?
If you cannot resolve a situation between yourselves, then turn to your Association. You will be asked to complete an incident report and the Board of Directors will see if a violation of the Policies and Guidelines did occur. If so, they will institute the enforcement policy. Your continued assistance may be required.
Are Board Meetings open to all owners? If so, where and when are they held?
Yes, Board meetings are open to all owners and notice of time and place of any regular board meeting will be provided to you by email or by newsletter.
If I want to serve on a committee, how do I find out what committees are active and how can I get involved?
If you are interested in volunteering, please contact your property manager or board member for more information.
What is my assessment?
The assessment is the periodic (monthly, quarterly, yearly) amount due from each homeowner to cover the operating expenses of the common area and provide for reserve funds for repair/replacement of common facilities. Your assessments are due on the first day of the each month, quarter, or year. Statements will be sent for assessments as a reminder of the amount due.
How is the amount of my assessment determined?
Budgets are developed by the Board of Directors and adjusted periodically to meet anticipated expenses. The largest monthly expense is typically the reserve contribution to fund major projects, which is determined by the HOA's Reserve Study. Reserve studies are performed by independent companies.
Can my assessment be changed?
The Board of Directors has the authority to increase assessments as deemed necessary.
What happens if I don't pay my assessment?
Invoices from maintenance and management services incurred by the Association are dependent upon timely receipt of the assessments due from each homeowner. Late payments will result in a late charge as assessments are due on the first day of the month if dues are assessed monthly, the first day of the quarter if dues are assessed quarterly, and the first day of the year if the fees are assessed once a year. Generally if the fees have not been received by the middle of the original month due, a late fee is assessed. In addition, the CC&R's and State law allow the Association to charge late fees and interest and proceed with a lien on your property or foreclosure for nonpayment of assessments.