Helping Homeowners Understand the HOA Rules

Nobody really likes being told what to do—and yet most of us have people telling us what to do all the time. Our employers tell us what to do. The government tells us what to do. And for those who live in an HOA community, the Association itself can tell us what to do.

This can rub people the wrong way, especially when they don’t have a clear understanding of what the HOA rules are or why they are in place. First and foremost, then, the Association can clear up any ill feelings simply by making sure all owners have copies of the Association rules and regulations.

Educating Owners About HOA Rules

There may also be a need to educate owners not just on what the rules state, but why they are in place.

A lot of this comes down to better understanding the role of the HOA. The basic function of any HOA is to maintain property values, and even to increase the value of homes in the community. The rules enforced by most HOAs further that goal, and are really fairly common-sense.

Consider some of the most common HOA rule violations—the things most Associations struggle with the most:

  • Owners taking their trashcans to the curb too early, or leaving them there too long.
  • Owners parking boats or RVs on their front lawns or in common areas.
  • Owners who simply don’t take care of their landscaping.
  • Owners making home renovations that simply don’t conform with the stylistic norms or the neighborhood.
  • Owners placing prohibited signs on their property.

Now, some of these may sound nitpicky to you, but consider that all of these violations can have the effect of making the community seem a little sloppy, a little messy, a little less pleasant of a place to live. In other words, they can actually have an adverse effect on property values. The rules exist to protect all homeowners against lowered property values. They are enforced for a reason.

Clarify the Rules with Your Homeowners

What we recommend to HOA Board members is reminding all homeowners why the rules exist—making it clear that they aren’t arbitrary in the least. When homeowners remember that the HOA has a practical purpose, they may be keener to abide by those regulations. As ever, feel free to contact Kuester with any questions.


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Bryan Kuester

Bryan Kuester

Bryan is the CEO of Kuester Management Group. He has over 15 years of managing community associations throughout North and South Carolina.

His specialties include Community Association Management - maintenance, budgeting for operational and reserve funding, long-range planning, covenant enforcement, amenity management, onsite management, large scale management.