Adopting A Homeowners’ Bill Of Rights

Planned communities, whether Condominium or single-family-residence in make-up, can establish what is referred to as a “Homeowners’ Bill of Rights”. The purpose of such a Bill of Rights is to place limitations on the power of Association and its Board to dictate life styles and activities within the community and to better protect current and future residents from being deprived of liberties they are not willing to sacrifice for the advantages of ownership in a planned community.

While such Bills of Rights are typically, and most conveniently, drafted by the developer of the planned community as a component of the initial governing documents, an existing community can also validly to do the same.

Such a Bill of Rights might include provisions addressing issues such as those listed below and/or others based upon the key values of the community residents:

1. Equal treatment of owners
2. Political signs
3. Religious and holiday displays
4. Household composition
5. Activities within individually owned property & a right to individual autonomy
6. Pets
7. Allocation of rights and financial obligations relating to common facilities
8. Rights regarding sale or rental of homes/units
9. Resolving disputes without litigation
10. Right to be notified of all rules and charges
11. Right to stability in rules, restrictions and charges
12. Right to oversight of association and directors
13. Percentage of owners required to change the Bill of Rights
14. Creating an ombudsman position to address owner inquiries and concerns

The required procedure to adopt such a Bill of Rights will vary depending upon the provisions of the community’s governing documents, but it certainly can be done if there is sufficient support within the community.

Please contact our firm if you are interested in learning more about adopting a Bill of Rights for your community.

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