What is a "management company," what do they do, and how do I reach them?
A management company is contracted by the Board of Directors to provide such services as: Collection of assessments, supervision of subcontractors, obtaining bids for contracted services, providing financial statements and collection reports, as well as a general clearing house for problem solving, communications with homeowners and the Board of Directors and to serve in an advisor capacity. The management company reports directly to the Board and all decisions are made by a majority vote of the Board of Directors. The management company may be reached online through the Online Office page on this website or by phone from the numbers listed on the Contact Us page on this site.
What is a homeowners' association?
It is usually a non-profit corporation registered with the State and governed by a duly elected Board of Directors. Its purpose is to maintain all common areas and to govern the community in accordance with the provision of the legal documents: CC&R's, Bylaws, and Articles of Incorporation. The corporation is financially supported by all members of the homeowners association. Membership is both automatic and mandatory.
What are the CC&R'S?
The Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CC&R's) are the governing legal documents that set up the guidelines for the operation of the planned community as a non-profit corporation. The CC&R's are recorded by the County recorder's office in the County in which the property is located and are included in the title to your property. Failure to abide by the CC&R's may result in a fine to a homeowner by the Association.
What are the Bylaws?
The Bylaws are the guidelines for the operation of the non-profit corporation. The Bylaws define the duties of the various offices of the Board of Directors, the terms of the Directors, the membership's voting rights, required meetings and notices of meetings, and the principal office of the Association, as well as other specific items that are necessary to run the Association as a business.
What is the Board of Directors?
The Homeowner's Association again is a corporation; consequently a governing body is required to oversee its business. The Board of Directors is elected by the homeowners, or as otherwise specified in the bylaws. The limitation and restrictions of the powers of the Board of Directors is outlined in the Association's governing documents.
Are there any other rules?
Most associations have developed Rules and Regulations as provided for in the CC&R's and adopted by the Board of Directors. Rules are established to provide direction to the homeowners for common courtesies with regard to parking, vehicles, pets and pool use hours, etc. In addition, your Association may adopt guidelines with procedures for submitting requests to make exterior changes to your home. Such changes may include patio covers, decks, landscaping, exterior color changes or extensive interior changes and additions. These rules and guidelines are set up to maintain the aesthetic value and integrity of the community on behalf of all owners, and hopefully protect the market value of your investment as well. Violations of these rules may result in action by the Board of Directors and a fine. In addition, if you proceed with an exterior improvement or change without written approval of the Board of Directors, or Architectural Committee, as applicable, you will be required to remove or correct the alteration and/or be fined for the violation.
If I am having a problem with a neighbor for a violation of the Policies and Guidelines, what can I do?
If residents cannot resolve a situation between themselves, then turn to your Association. Should you have a situation that does not appear to be resolved through neighborly interaction, and you are willing to actively participate in the enforcement provided by the Policies and Guidelines, you may complete a violation report form and forward it to our association's manager. If the situation is deemed in violation of the Policies and Guidelines, the Board of Directors will initiate the enforcement policy. Your continued assistance may be required.
Are Board Meetings open to all residents? If so, where and when are they held?
Yes. Notice of the time and place of any regular board meeting will be noted in the community newsletter, via e-blast message, on visible communitys signage, or accessed online on the Calendar page. To access your community calendar page, online registration will be required. *Register Here
If I want to serve on a committee, how do I find out what committees are active and how I can get involved?
If you are interested in volunteering, please contact the individual committee chair or send an online request to the Community Manager using the contact page of this site.
What is my assessment?
The assessment is the amount due from each homeowner to cover the operating expenses of the association for common areas, administrative expenses and to provide for reserve funds for repair or replacement of common facilities in future years. Statements or coupons are typically sent for assessments as a reminder of the amount due.
How is the amount of my assessment determined?
The Department of Real Estate typically requires a budget from the developer for each community that a developer proposes to build. This budget is set upon specific guidelines for utilities, landscaping, administration, etc. Reserve funds are monies set aside for future expenses due to the life expectancy of certain items: lighting, street resurfacing, pool equipment, etc. These amounts are then divided by the number of units built in a given phase of the development. Subsequent budgets are developed by the Board of Directors in conjunction with SBB Management Company and are typically reviewed and approved prior to any forthcoming association fiscal year.
Will my assessment go up?
There is no concrete answer to this. Typically the governing documents provides for annual increases, but there may be limits to the amount assessments can increase every year without the vote of the membership. The Board of Directors may approve an increased budget, increasing your assessment up to this percentage in order to cover increased costs of operating and maintaining the common area and sufficient reserve funds. It is fiscally prudent to include small, regular increases to the assessment amount to avoid the possibility of a Special Assessment.
What happens if I don't pay my assessment?
The maintenance and management services incurred by the Association are dependent upon timely receipt of the assessments due from each homeowner. Late payments can result in a late charge as assessments are due on the first of the month. In addition, the CC&R's generally allow the Association to charge late charges and interest and proceed with a lien or foreclosure proceeding for nonpayment of assessments.
What do my assessments pay for?
The general maintenance of all of the association's common areas. This will be different for each community and may include; landscape services, pool cleaning, guard service; replacement of trees and shrubs or other landscape improvements as necessary; installation of seasonal color changes for entry areas or other color bed areas; maintenance of the irrigation system; all utilities, including electricity, water, gas and telephone; common area repairs and replacement; legal and tax services; insurance premiums; taxing requirements; professional management fees; homeowner functions and meetings; administrative costs relating to correspondence with homeowners, processing architectural requests, copies, postage, etc. Sometimes assessment funds are placed in reserves for future repair and replacement of the association's most expensive assets. For example, perimeter walls, building roofs and so on are not items that can generally be repaired or replaced with operating funds so money is accumulated over time for these costly items. This list represents the most common costs but may comprise only a portion of what your assessments pay for.
What is the maintenance responsibility of a homeowner?
In a townhome or condominium, the homeowner is responsible for all of the interior of the home, as well as some individual components of the exterior maintenance of his/her home. This would include but is not limited to: exterior doors, yard drains, windows, light fixtures, bulbs, sidewalks, electrical outlets, A/C units/compressor, window screens, mailboxes and wood fences. In single family associations, the homeowner has the responsibility for the maintenance of the home and lot. This includes the routine maintenance of the yard, fence and driveway areas.
What process do I follow when there is a maintenance issue?
In all cases, you should contact the management company for information regarding what materials are required and the process to submit for architectural approval prior to starting any project.
What is the responsibility of the association?
The association maintains, repairs and replaces any common area items. Perimeter walls or fences, water features or fountains, exterior landscape or monument lighting, common area landscaping, amenity centers, swimming pools, playgrounds, walking trails and so on if applicable. Refer to the associations CC&R's for specific guidelines of any of the above items. Please remember to submit for architectural approval before proceeding with any exterior modification.
What if I want to make an improvement to the exterior of my home? What is the procedure for approval?
If you are planning on making ANY exterior improvements to your home, an Architectural Request must be submitted to the Architectural Control or Review Committee (ACC/ARC). This includes but is not limited to any structure, landscaping, fence, wall, roof, attachment or improvement of any kind.
Who do we contact when there is a streetlight out?
You can report street lights to the management representative at SBB, but most of the time street lights are maintained by the municipality. Only gated communities must replace the streetlights located within their community. Streetlights may be replaced faster if you report them directly to the city or utility company that services your area.