What Are Unenforceable HOA Rules?

What Are Unenforceable HOA Rules?

Many planned communities and residential neighborhoods are governed by a homeowner association. An HOA is established by the land developer as a way to manage the building and selling of new homes on the property, and to create rules upon which purchasing a house is contingent. While most regulations are intended to keep the neighborhood clean and safe, they can sometimes be What Are Unenforceable HOA Rules?. Many also are unenforceable.

Enforceable HOA Rules

Once the majority of homes are sold, developers relinquish control of the HOA to the property owners, who then elect a board to enforce the community’s covenants, conditions, and restrictions. Rules easily enforced include restrictions on the following items:

  • Exterior paint colors
  • Amount of holiday lights
  • Length of grass
  • Presence of non-functional vehicles in the driveway
  • Livestock

Unenforceable HOA Rules

All bylaws seem like a good idea to the board members who write them. However, many are impossible or at least impractical to enforce. Examples of unenforceable HOA rules include the following:

  • Number of guests allowed to spend the night in a home
  • Minimum age of children allowed in a pool
  • Unreasonably low-speed limits

These rules cannot be regulated by an average committee. Besides being unenforceable, some rules also border on infringement of fair housing rights. HOAs should keep these issues in mind when drafting bylaws.

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