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HOA too lax in age-qualified community, homeowner says

Q: We moved from a non-homeowners association (and messy) neighborhood to an age-qualified community with an HOA to “upgrade” our lifestyle. Frankly, we thought it was really a great place with a strict HOA but they aren’t. Since the standards are pretty lax, I think a big overhaul/reset is in order. Some of these provisions are on the books literally for 20 years, and times have changed. Younger people like us moving here prefer a more modern approach, if you get my meaning.

For example, in addition to these overly bright exterior lights, the hideous and excessive Christmas lights allowed to be up for 30 days after the holiday are a real eyesore (and nobody has children here as you know). Many trees are original to the development and literally towering over rooftops, encroaching on neighbor’s properties and presenting many hazards with potential root systems disrupting main water lines.

As for the budget, OK, then I guess we are stuck with the big increase on dues.

As for the state law, what I mean is: We will need to sue our neighbor in court to get resolution on the “nuisance” light trespass issue, and the HOA cannot do anything to stop that as far as we know. That is what I mean about state laws overriding HOA decisions. If you sue someone for a problem they are creating that the HOA is not taking care of, the HOA has no say in it as far as we understand. It’s just sad we can’t get them to enforce rules they have put in writing. My guess is that is a violation in and of itself and they are likely able to be sued and cited for failure to enforce, selective enforcement and perhaps acting in bad faith. I’m sure this is a tedious process, but also sure they would have to comply with a court order.

A: I hate to disappoint you, but in most cases, if you bring a lawsuit to the courts, they will not take the matter into consideration unless you have exhausted all administrative remedies. Administrative remedies from working with your association board to the various options available provided by the Nevada Real Estate Division.

If you want to see more proactive enforcement of association’s rules and regulations, run for the board and find others who will run with similar goals.

Q: Is there any precedent or information on how Nevada Revised Statutes 116.31034 Nos. 9 and 10 are applied to companies as a “person”? The feedback I am getting is that the statute does not apply to companies only human beings?

A: NRS 116.31034 (9 and 10) pertains to the election process whereby each person who places their name to be nominated as a candidate on the board must make a good faith effort to disclose any potential conflict of interest such as financial, business, professional or personal relationships that would result or would appear to a reasonable person as a conflict of interest.

Section 10 lists those persons who may not be a candidate for the board. For example, if the person residing in a unit is married, is domestic partners or is related by blood or marriage within the third degree of consanguinity or affinity to another person who is also a member of the board, that person may not run for the board. There are other prohibitions whereby an owner cannot serve on the board.

Looking further at this law, section 14 allows an officer, employee, agent or director of a corporate owner, trust, partnership, limited-liability company or estate that owns a unit and is a fiduciary of the estate that owns a unit to have their name placed in nomination. There are specific requirements such as filing proof in the records, authorizing the individual to represent their entity as listed in this paragraph.

The individual representing their entity must also adhere to sections 9 and 10. As noted, it is the individual and not the entity that is being elected.

Barbara Holland is an author and educator on real estate management. Questions may be sent to holland744o@gmail.com.

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