Some in the membership may believe the HOA is similar to Big Brother when they wish to alter the exterior of their home or do anything that requires approval of the Board of Directors or Architectural Review Committee. The architectural review program is actually a benefit to everyone—not a burden. The HOA’s architectural design standards are based on harmony with the overall community, consideration for neighbors, and high-quality construction practices. The architectural design review program exists to maintain, protect, and enhance the value of the membership’s individual property, and it strives for a balance between individual rights and the good of the community.
While HOA members have the biggest stake in property values, others are also very interested in seeing the HOA well maintained and looking its best. Potential homebuyers and lenders’ financial support are intertwined closely with the HOAs. Public officials have an interest in the maintaining and the enhancement of the HOA since well-maintained communities improve the overall standards of the entire community in which the HOA resides.
The HOA should make all efforts to notify new members of its architectural design review requirements as soon as the member joins the community. These guidelines should contain everything needed for the approval process, design requirements, and the HOA’s basic design philosophy. The guidelines can even list the changes that do not need approval.
The Architectural Review Committee should make every effort to process applications fairly, reasonably, and quickly. Architectural violations are the leading cause of lawsuits in most HOAs and all parties involved must take the process seriously.
William Douglas Management, providing excellent management services to HOAs and condominium associations since 1980.
Copyright 2018 William Douglas Management, Inc.