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Does your HOA need to fine a non-compliant resident?

| Feb 17, 2021 | Homeowners' Associations

Homeownership is a big investment, and homeowners’ associations (HOAs) help protect the people who buy in to their communities. The HOA sets standards for the community.

By limiting how much of a nuisance one homeowner or their tenant can be and establishing clear requirements for maintenance and appearance of properties, the HOA helps protect everybody’s property values.

When a homeowner governed by your HOA falls out of compliance, you may need to take enforcement steps to preserve property values. What do you need to do if you want to fine someone for rule-breaking or non-compliance?

You usually must give them an opportunity to correct the issue

Before you take legal action against a property owner who lives in your community, you likely want to give them the opportunity to do the right thing.

Sending them a formal letter advising them of the violation and how they must remedy it can solve a lot of compliance issues. If they don’t respond or make it clear they don’t intend to correct the problem, you will need to take additional steps.

Follow through with enforcement regardless of the situation

Perhaps someone has fallen behind in caring for their property because a loved one is in the hospital. Although you may know that they have a compelling reason for their oversight, that doesn’t excuse it.

Additionally, if your HOA fails to uniformly enforce the rules, you may have trouble enforcing them in the future if someone tries to fight your fines. You will need clear-cut documentation of the infraction and the rules in your HOA regulations that those actions or inaction violate.

Getting help with drafting compliance letters and verifying that your association bylaws authorized the disciplinary action are steps that may require legal assistance. An experienced attorney can help you protect your HOA’s interests in the long run.

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