A homeowner’s association (HOA) can be an effective way to protect your community’s property values and ensure that everyone does their part to keep their property in good condition. While an HOA may seem like nothing more than a simple board of community members, setting up a legally sound HOA is more complex than you might think.
A real estate attorney can be a valuable asset both in an HOA’s formation and in the event of unforeseen disputes.
Help during formation
From the start, an attorney can provide legal counsel during the organizational set up of the HOA. They can write or review an HOA’s organizational documents – including bylaws, restrictions, conditions, etc. – to make sure that they are legal and functional. In some cases, an HOA board of directors may opt to engage in ongoing consultation with a lawyer to ensure their organizational set up is sustainable over the long term.
Thoughtful formation reduces the likelihood that the HOA will encounter legal issues down the road. However, no two neighbors are the same, and personal issues among HOA members can still lead to unexpected trouble. A real estate lawyer can help to resolve such issues as well.
Help in case of dispute
Dealing with a dispute directly with a neighbor in your community can be uncomfortable, and your resolution may be difficult to enforce. A lawyer can help you to negotiate through disputes with other homeowners – to come to a resolution together. In cases where negotiation is not an option, your lawyer can also take stronger action on your behalf – such as fee collections, assessment lien enforcement and even seeking court judgments against homeowners.
An HOA offers a high quality of living with many valuable community amenities. However, managing this type of association means that you will have to deal with issues that arise among members. A real estate lawyer can be extraordinarily advantageous in helping your HOA run smoothly.