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HOA board does not have duty to take enforcement action

Q: I would really appreciate a reply to the following issues as I feel I am out of options on what to do.

I live in an HOA. We are seniors who have been constantly harassed by the HOA and the board — very nitpicky things.

The latest one is our trash cans were put out the morning before trash day as we were going to be out of town overnight and not back in town until after the trash had been picked up.

We could not leave them until the following week as our trash cans were totally full. You probably wonder why we didn’t inform them that, one, it’s none of their business and, two, we don’t trust them to not do something to our place.

We then got a notice with the intent to fine if we don’t correct the issue. I mean, come on, this is trivial especially since it’s the first time we ever did it, and no doubt not the last. They don’t care; they warned us not to do it again.

A: Actually, this would not be considered harassment. The placement of trash containers and the removal of them is part of the Clark County code. It also appears to be part of your association’s regulations. If you are going on vacation again, you may need to ask one of your neighbors for assistance.

Q: At the last board meeting, we got into it as they said they do not enforce everything. Excuse me, but how is that legal? We are not allowed to use our garage as storage and must park vehicles in the garage. But yet three-quarters of the people park outside and the board does nothing. We’re supposed to have white fans only on the balcony, yet they have plenty of brown ones. And solar screens have to be beige, yet there are black ones, and they do nothing about it.

A: Under NRS 116.3102 (3-4), the board may determine whether to take enforcement actions. The board does not have a duty to take enforcement action under certain circumstances.

In the reader’s case, the board should be enforcing these regulations. Because violations are considered confidential under the law, the association cannot disclose whether these homeowners are being fined. Please note that fining does not always mean compliance by the owner.

If the reader thinks that the association board is not fulfilling its legal obligations as to enforcement, the reader should file a formal complaint with the Nevada Real Estate Division’s Ombudsman Office on West Sahara Avenue.

Q: The other thing is board members are always taking photos of our balcony. It’s gotten so bad that my wife is afraid to go out not knowing what they will do. We like our place, we do not want to sell, but we shouldn’t be afraid in our home to go out.

A: Now this issue of taking photographs of the reader’s balcony could very well be a form of harassment. The reader should definitely add this to their formal complaint with the division. The reader may also want to contact an attorney to discuss their options.

Q: Cars are supposed to have visitor tags if you don’t live here, but there are tons of cars that park on-premise without a tag. Nothing is done. They told me if I don’t like it: sell.

A: Once again, if your association board is not enforcing the regulations, you can add this to your list of complaints to the division for them to investigate.

Q: We have lived here for four years and have been harassed since Day 1. Can you help us with this or point us in the direction of an attorney. I can’t keep living like this. It’s becoming major anxiety for us, and I don’t think what they are doing is legal on all fronts.

A: There are many attorneys involved with associations. I cannot suggest one in this column.

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

Suggested reading material for HOA 101

You should contact the Nevada Real Estate Division and Community Associations Institute Chapter for other practical information in governing associations as well as seminars that are being taught on a regular basis to assist managers and board members.

Condo building has strict rules on flooring choices

t is not unusual to have regulations in a condominium to help reduce the sound from one unit to another unit, especially those vertical ones.

Community wants to add designated spaces in parking lot

Finally, changing the parking lot to one with designated spaces may require approval by the homeowners as it may fall under architectural change of the common area.

Send courtesy letters to owners draining pools in street

Continue to remind pool owners in your flyers. For those violators, do send out courtesy letters, which include the statement that a second offense will result in a hearing (check your enforcement policy as to when you can send the hearing letter).

Homeowner wants to replace tree with boulder

As to the actual removal of a tree and replacing it with a boulder, you will need to look at your architectural guidelines as the board may have the authority to require you to do more than place a boulder.

HOA changes homes’ color schemes

If at the time of purchase of the home, the color scheme was part of the original architectural guidelines, the association may possibly not have the authority to mandate a new color scheme.

Law says HOA president can be removed from office

Nevada Revised Statute 116.31036 pertains to the removal of a director. A director can be removed with or without cause.

HOA vice president has right to hear complaint against him

If the president wants to review the complaint with the full board, the president should call for a formal hearing. The president should not be judge and jury.

Homeowner says letter wasn’t nice but it wasn’t harassment

I sent management a couple of emails they didn’t like. Now I’m being charged for harassment. There is no bylaw covering “you have to be nice to management,” so they are citing me under a “no firearms are to be discharged/ no unsafe fires are to be started.”