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Town home attracts vagrants; HOA not happy

Updated October 9, 2023 - 1:59 pm

Q: I live in a town home homeowners association. We are encountering problems with vagrants entering vacant units. One of the units is easily accessible as the backdoor does not lock. We have notified the owner each time we see the backdoor is ajar. We have called the owner and (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department) when we see vagrants in the unit. The HOA and police have contacted the owner and his property manager when they have chased vagrants from their unit.

However, the owner and property manager are indifferent and have done nothing to properly secure the unit. Their indifference poses a threat to the safety and welfare of our community. Sending them monthly violation notices does not seem to work. What other actions can the HOA take to get this owner to properly secure his property?

A: Nevada Revised Statute 116.310312 (2) states that an association may enter the grounds of the unit, whether or not the unit is vacant, to take any of the following actions if the unit’s owner refuses or fails to take any action or comply with any requirement imposed on the unit’s owner with the time frame specified by the association as a result of a hearing to (2a) maintain the exterior of the unit in accordance with the standards set forth in the governing documents to (2b) (2) to remove or abate a public nuisance on the exterior of the unit, which threatens the health or safety of the residents of the association.

Your association should discuss this option with your legal counsel as the association could take action and maintain the backdoor of the unit or any other area that is exposed to vagrants. You have to follow your enforcement policies, hold a hearing and provide information of the cost that would be incurred and assessed against his account.

Continue to contact Metro when vagrants are inside the house. Have your attorney take action to pressure the owner as your vagrancy issue is definitely a health issue.

Q: I live in a community that has an active association (sometimes). I live across the street from a guy that has parked a tow truck in his driveway for almost a year. When the association goes after him, he’ll move it to the side of his house for a few days. We have a recreational vehicle storage parking lot and an overflow lot, but he stays at the house. Any suggestions?

A: You have a repeat offender. It’s time to start placing fines on his account each week the tow truck is in his driveway.

Now, under NRS 116.350 (5c), the resident could request a variance with the association that would allow him to park his town truck in his driveway, if he can show the tow truck is used for emergency response calls from both individuals and the police or fire departments. Please note, this would be stretching the law, as tow trucks, even for police emergency calls, are not explicitly stated in this statute.

Q: I live in a small HOA with not many grassy areas for pets. The board is talking about taking out all the grass and putting artificial turf in all the grass areas. Many of us deem this to be extremely pet-unfriendly. Although we understand there are mandates that must be met, it seems extreme to remove all the grass. From what I read, we could be eligible for a waiver. It is a 55-plus (age-qualified) community and it should be pet-friendly.

The larger question is, whatever they decide to finally do when they do remove the grass, whether it be all of it or some of it, would the cost be eligible to be taken out of the reserve account or is this a budget item?

A: After speaking with reserve specialists, this mandated requirement could be funded by the reserve account, assuming there are line items for landscaping in the reserve study.

Barbara Holland, CPM is an author, educator, expert witness on real estate issues pertaining to management and brokerage. Questions may be sent to holland744o@gmail.com.

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