Examining the Rights of Homeowners Within an HOA

Homeowners’ associations don’t always have the best reputation. Though they can be a great resource for establishing and protecting a community, they can also impose unwanted rules for HOA homeowners that result in unnecessary frustration and expenses. The fact is, there are certain homeowner’s rights in an HOA that cannot be compromised, whether the board likes it or not. The following are four homeowner rights in an HOA, regardless of what community restrictions or regulations might exist —and regardless of what a board member might try to tell a homeowner.

Maintain Control Over Property

It is the right of every homeowner in an HOA to maintain individual control over their property. While an HOA may be able to dictate aesthetic specifications and other details outlined in community guidelines, the home’s inhabitant is free to use the property in whatever manner they see fit, so long as it is legal. Some HOAs may try to impose additional guidelines on homeowners, but unless those guidelines have been discussed, approved, and documented by the HOA, they are unenforceable. The homeowner thus maintains control over their property and maintains the right of autonomy.

Propose New or Veto Old Rules

As a homeowner, any person within the HOA’s jurisdiction is entitled to propose new rules for the community. Similarly, they are entitled to change existing rules. In both cases, the homeowner must follow whatever protocol the HOA has established for such processes. Typically, a majority vote from other HOA members is required to implement new rules or change an existing one. It is the homeowner’s prerogative to initiate such a process, though, regardless of what that process may be.

Investigate Financial Documents

Homeowners are also entitled to audit the finances of their HOA. This can be done by requesting access to documents that detail the financial standing of the organization. Some of the documents that may be requested include:

  • Annual budget
  • Financial reports
  • Membership list
  • Vendor contracts
  • HOA tax returns

These documents can shed light on the financial standing of the HOA, and every member is entitled to awareness of their organization’s finances.

Legal Action Against Board Members

Finally, if any of the aforementioned rights are violated or denied, a homeowner has the right to pursue legal action against their HOA. This will typically entail hiring an attorney to represent them and initiating a suit in protest of whatever violation they’ve endured. For homeowners, this right can be empowering, but for an HOA, it can be disastrous. Organizations that are not protected by HOA insurance are even more likely to be devastated by such legal action. With insurance coverage, though, HOAs are protected against frivolous lawsuits and many other events that can financially impact the organization.

About Kevin Davis Insurance Services

For over 35 years, Kevin Davis Insurance Services has built an impressive reputation as a strong wholesale broker offering insurance products for the community association industry. Our president Kevin Davis and his team take pride in offering committed services to the community association market and providing them with unparalleled access to high-quality coverage, competitive premiums, superior markets, and detailed customer service. To learn more about the coverage we offer, contact us toll-free at (855)-790-7393 to speak with one of our representatives.