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HOMEOWNERS ASSOCIATION ARTICLES

Lose Vacant Lot if Don't Pay Property Taxes or HOA Fees

By Christopher Combs | October 23, 2017

Lose Vacant Lot if Don’t Pay Property Taxes or HOA Fees   Question: Twenty years ago my husband and I purchased a lot in northern Arizona. Although there were promises by the developer about development of the entire area, no development has occurred, and no development is anticipated. Every year we pay the property taxes and property management fees related to the development. We are retired, and want to reduce our expenses. Is there anything that we can do with the lot that would not harm our credit rating?   Answer: If you fail to pay the property taxes you…

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Probate Preferred Over Beneficiary Deed If HOA Transfer Fee

By Christopher Combs | September 6, 2017

Probate Preferred Over Beneficiary Deed If HOA Transfer Fee   Question: In a recent column you discussed the advantage of a mother executing and recording a beneficiary deed to her daughter for a Sun City home. The advantage was that the daughter, without the necessity and cost of a probate, would be the owner of the Sun City home upon the mother’s death. In Sun City, however, there is a $4,000 transfer fee paid to the HOA that is generally due upon the transfer of a Sun City home. This $4,000 transfer fee can be avoided by probate of the…

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HOA Does Not Waive CC&R Enforcement for Past Non-Enforcement

By Christopher Combs | August 30, 2017

HOA Does Not Waive CC&R Enforcement for Past Non-Enforcement  Question: One of the problems in our North Phoenix community has been our HOA failing to enforce the CC&Rs that prohibit parking cars on the grass next to the driveway.  At our annual meeting last month we elected a new Board of Directors for our HOA.  Although several homeowners have consistently parked cars on the grass next to their driveways for many years, the new Board of Directors wants to enforce the CC&Rs prohibiting parking of cars on the grass.  Can the new Board of Directors enforce the CC&Rs, or after many…

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An HOA Without Dog Breed Restrictions Can Still Demand Removal

By Christopher Combs | August 24, 2017

An HOA Without Dog Breed Restrictions Can Still Demand Removal of Aggressive Pitbull   Question: One of the neighbors in our South Scottsdale community has a Pitbull that has severely bitten two other dogs in our community. The CC&Rs generally require that the neighbors live in harmony with one another, and also require that dogs and other pets be controlled. The neighbor has paid the fines imposed by the HOA for violating the CC&Rs, but the neighbor still walks the Pitbull around our community. I am afraid to go outside with our French Bulldog without my husband also going with me. Is…

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Open Meeting Laws and HOA's

By Christopher Combs | July 16, 2017

Open Meeting Laws and HOA’s   Question:  I am on the HOA Board of Directors of a north Phoenix community. There is a great deal of confusion about what issues can be discussed in an executive session of the HOA Board of Directors without the attendance by any homeowners. Under the Arizona open meeting laws what are the areas of discussion for an executive session of the HOA Board of Directors?   Answer:  In general, there are four statutory exceptions to the open meeting laws that permit an HOA board of directors to meet in executive session without the presence…

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HOA Dispute Process by Arizona Department of Real Estate

By Christopher Combs | June 25, 2017

HOA Dispute Process by Arizona Department of Real Estate   Question:  We have a “rogue” Board of Directors for the HOA for our Gilbert community. They refuse to enforce the CC&Rs prohibiting overnight parking on our streets. I don’t want our community turned into a parking lot. What recourse does a homeowner have against the Board of Directors of an HOA that won’t enforce the CC&Rs?   Answer:  If the Board of Directors will not enforce the CC&Rs, the individual homeowner is generally entitled to enforce the CC&Rs by filing a lawsuit. A lawsuit, however, can be time-consuming and expensive. …

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New CCR’s after 2014 Cannot Regulate City Streets

By Christopher Combs | April 12, 2017

New CCR’s after 2014 Cannot Regulate City Streets   Question: The homeowners association for our community was formed in 2008. The streets in our community are owned by the City of Mesa. Our CC&Rs have always prohibited parking overnight in the streets. In a recent column you said that since 2014 the CC&Rs of a community can no longer regulate parking on city streets. Does that mean our CC&Rs prohibiting parking overnight in the streets are unenforceable?   Answer: No. The language in my recent column was not clear. Any CC&Rs adopted prior to December 31, 2014, can still regulate…

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Owners Should Demand CC&R Enforcement

By Christopher Combs | November 22, 2016

Owners Should Demand CC&R Enforcement  Question: We recently purchased a new home in a Peoria subdivision. Less than 50% of the homes have been sold in the subdivision.  One of the reasons that we purchased our new home was that we liked the architectural and landscaping standards in the CC&Rs for the homes in the subdivision. The problem now is that the homeowners association is still controlled by the developer, and this developer is not enforcing the CC&Rs, especially in relation to exterior painting of at least eight homes in the subdivision. Several neighbors and I are concerned that, after the…

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