Arizona HOA Documents Fee vs. HOA Transfer Fee

By Christopher Combs | March 16, 2016

HOA Documents Fee vs. HOA Transfer Fee   Question: We are selling our home in east Mesa for $800,000. Although the escrow is not scheduled to close for another three weeks, we recently learned that our Homeowners Association (“HOA”) is demanding a transfer fee of one-half of 1 percent, or $4,000, to be paid at closing. My sister is a real estate agent and she says that a new law limits the fee that an HOA can charge to $400. Does this $4,000 fee have to be paid to the HOA?   Answer: Probably. The Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (“CC&Rs”)…


Foreclosure for Delinquent HOA Dues and Assessments

By Christopher Combs | March 14, 2016

 Foreclosure for Delinquent HOA Dues and Assessments   Question: In our homeowners’ association in North Phoenix there are several “deadbeat” homeowners who have not paid their monthly dues for several months, and who also have not paid the special assessment for our new roads.  We have written numerous letters to these homeowners, but these homeowners are still delinquent.  The result is that the other homeowners have to pay more than their share to make up for these delinquent homeowners. I know that these delinquent homeowners will probably have to pay the delinquent payments when they sell their homes, but is there…


Are Your HOA’s “Open Meetings” Really Open?

By Christopher Combs | November 18, 2015

 Arizona HOA Open Meeting Laws   In Arizona, an HOA Board must hold a meeting at least once per year to discuss HOA business, allow Association Members to provide feedback, and, occasionally, vote for new Board Members. Arizona law requires that this meeting and other meetings which may be called by the Board or by Association Members themselves must be “open.” What exactly does it mean for an HOA meeting to be open?   For an HOA meeting to be open, the Board must (1) inform Association Members of the time and place of the meeting at least 10 days…


HOA Retains Authority Even if it has Been Lax on Enforcement

By Christopher Combs | September 13, 2015

  Question:  We live in a gated community in Chandler.  There are covenants, conditions, and restrictions (“CC&Rs”) that should be enforced by our homeowners association.  Due to the economy and numerous foreclosures in our gated community, there has been a shortage of funds in the bank account of our homeowners association.  The result is that the swimming pool and other common areas have not been properly maintained, and violations by individual homeowners of the CC&Rs have not been enforced for years.  A new board of directors and a new property management company have recently done a wonderful job in correcting…


Has the HOA Waived Future Enforcement?

By Christopher Combs | June 9, 2015

  An owner of a home in a subdivision governed by an HOA built a detached guest house three years ago. Detached guest houses are prohibited under the CC&Rs. The HOA is now demanding that the guest house be removed. Has the HOA waived its right to enforce the single-structure restriction? If the CC&Rs contain a non-waiver provision, which they often do, the HOA probably can enforce the restriction against the owner. In other words, the HOA can likely have the guest house removed at the owner’s expense.  Upon the recording of the CC&Rs, every owner was at least constructively…


Homeowners Association can Foreclose

By Christopher Combs | July 20, 2014

  Question: In our homeowners association in north Phoenix, several “deadbeat” homeowners have not paid their monthly fees for several months and have not paid the special assessment for new roofs. We have written numerous letters to these homeowners, but they are still delinquent. The result is other homeowners have to pay more than their share to make up for these delinquent homeowners. I know they will have to make these delinquent payments when they sell their homes because the delinquencies are liens on their homes, but is there anything else that we can do now to collect the payments?…


Lot Split in Wickenburg Sparks Confusion

By Christopher Combs | May 9, 2014

  Question: We live in an older subdivision in Wickenburg. Each of the lots in this subdivision is at least 5 acres. The CC&Rs that govern our subdivision prohibit lot splitting. At the time that our subdivision was developed, the developer dedicated easements to Maricopa County for roads.   We recently checked the county assessor’s map of our subdivision, and we learned that the county assessor two years ago “split” the lots to have separate tax-parcel numbers for the lots and for the roads. The county assessor’s explanation for this split was “as a courtesy to the taxpaying homeowners who…


HOA Rules Can be Adjusted to Limit Rentals

By Christopher Combs | March 30, 2014

  Question:  We live in a small community of 21 homes in the Camp Verde area. Several of the homeowners live in Phoenix and rent out their houses. Buyers of two houses currently in escrow also live in Phoenix and intend to rent out their homes. We do not want this small community to become a community of “rental” homes. Can we amend the covenants, conditions, and restrictions of our homeowners association to prohibit no more than 20 percent of the homes to be rentals? If so, can we “grandfather” the existing leases of rental homes?   Answer: You will initially…