ARTICLES & NEWS

HOMEOWNERS ASSOCIATION ARTICLES

foreclosure

HOA Can Foreclose on Home for Unpaid Dues

By Christopher Combs | May 24, 2020

Question: Our mother has been struggling with dementia that has worsened over the last year. We recently moved her from her Mesa home to an assisted living facility in Gilbert. The Mesa home is both a physical disaster (with numerous repairs necessary) and an HOA paperwork disaster. The HOA dues total more than $3,000, and have not been paid by my mother for over a year. In addition, there are numerous unpaid HOA fines of more than $2,000 for overnight parking in the street and for not making repairs to the exterior of the home. The HOA’s management company has…

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neighborhood plans

Amendment of CC&Rs to Prohibit Short-Term Rentals

By Christopher Combs | April 12, 2020

Question: In last week’s column you said that 51% of the neighbors in a Phoenix neighborhood could not agree to prohibit short-term rentals in their neighborhood. This Phoenix neighborhood had no CC&Rs. Therefore, many readers of your column might think that their Phoenix neighborhood cannot prohibit short-term rentals. In fact, most Phoenix neighborhoods have CC&Rs which can be amended by the homeowners to prohibit short-term rentals. The voting requirement to amend the CC&Rs can be as low as 51% of the homeowners. Our Phoenix neighborhood has CC&Rs that allow amendments by 51% of the homeowners, and we recently amended our…

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trashed house

Simple Deed Restrictions Can Limit Short-Term Rentals

By Christopher Combs | April 5, 2020

Question: Our Gilbert community of 60 homes was built by the developer in 1969. We are having problems with a short-term rental in our community. In this short-term rental the tenants are moving in and out almost every day, parking in the wrong areas, and trashing our swimming pool. A group of our neighbors wanted to amend our CC&Rs to prohibit short-term rentals of less than 30 days. We learned, however, that there have never been any CC&Rs for our community. Our understanding now is that 51% of the 60 homes in our community would be able to sign new…

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speeding

Owner Liable for Tenant’s Violation of CC&Rs

By Christopher Combs | March 15, 2020

Question: We leased our Gilbert home last summer while we were in Europe. One week after we moved back into our home, we got a notice from the HOA of a $150 fine against us because our tenant had been speeding in the community. We contacted the HOA to determine why the tenant was not being fined, and how the fine was calculated. The HOA said that the HOA only had the authority to fine us as the owner for our tenant’s speeding violations. Although the HOA admitted that there was no published schedule of fines, the HOA said that…

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Anthem, AZ

Conversion of Three Rental Homes to Short-Term Rentals

By Christopher Combs | February 9, 2020

Question: We went to a short-term rental seminar last fall at Scottsdale Community College. There were excellent speakers such as Paradise Valley broker Greg Hague, Scottsdale Realtors CEO Rebecca Grossman, Scottsdale Councilwoman Kathy Littlefield, and the Paradise Valley police chief. The reason that we went to this seminar is that we have owned three rental homes in Anthem for more than 20 years, and we were wanting to convert these three rental homes to short-term rentals. Although this seminar was excellent, this seminar primarily discussed the effect of short-term rentals on a community. We are still confused, however, as to…

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black door

Non-Waiver Clause in CC&Rs

By Christopher Combs | February 2, 2020

Question: We purchased a black door for our home in Glendale. We sent a photo of this black door along with our application for approval to the Architectural Review Committee (“ARC”) of our HOA. The ARC denied our application because the CC&Rs require that doors be earth-toned colors. We then met with the ARC and showed them photos of nine other black, or mostly black, doors in our community. The ARC still denied our application. The chairman of the ARC admitted, however, that this “black door” CC&R had never been enforced before we applied for approval. Can the ARC enforce…

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golf course

Golf Course Must be Operated by New Owner of Golf Course

By Christopher Combs | January 26, 2020

Question: My husband and I are looking to buy a new home in the Southeast Valley. We looked at a Chandler development, and the CC&Rs said that an 18-hole championship golf course would be built on land not far from our new home. My husband loves to play golf but I have no interest in golf. I would rather buy a new home in a Gilbert community with access to the shops and restaurants in downtown Gilbert. Will the Chandler developer have to build the golf course because of the representations in the CC&Rs? If so, how long does the…

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Constitutional Amendment Needed to Allow Regulation by Cities and Towns of Short-Term Rentals

By Christopher Combs | January 5, 2020

Question: In a recent column you said that if twelve Sedona homeowners wanted to prohibit Airbnb and VRBO short-term rentals in their small community of twelve homes, the twelve Sedona homeowners could form their own HOA to prohibit short-term rentals. In other words, if a group of homeowners already lives in an HOA community, or forms an HOA, the HOA can prohibit short-term rentals. If you don’t live in an HOA community, however, all of your neighbors can sell their homes to investors, and turn their homes into short-term rentals for up to 365 days a year. Why doesn’t our…

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