Building a Deck, Patio and Fence under an HOA
HOAs have what is called “architectural control” over your house and property. This means there are hundreds of HOA regulations that apply to the way your house looks and which renovations you may or may not perform on it. Such policies are in place to ensure that by modifying your home, you are not devaluing your neighbor’s properties. The problem is, with all these rules you have to follow, building a deck, patio and fence can turn into a nightmare. So HOA recommends to follow the below guidelines.
- Before you apply to get the approval from your HOA, you should pull the building permits from the county.
- You will need to download and complete an HOA application to the HOA’s Architectural Review Board or a similar entity that deals with these matters.
- Get a sign-off from 2 closest neighbors.
- Provide complete specs, for the exact architectural change you are proposing, e.g. addition of a deck, your building contractor can be very helpful describing the building plans.
Our HOAs regulate decks, patio and fence, so you might find some specifications and restriction in your HOA’s governing documents.This can be a tedious process because HOA applications are usually very involved and detailed.Download ARC application form
to fill in and submit the package to HOA Management
Get an Approval
The HOA Board Members or Convents Committee will review your application and will give you their response within 60 days upon accepting the application by Association Management. Make sure you have HOA’s approval in writing in case any issues are to arise in the future. Don’t skip any steps! The HOA has the right to request you to tear your deck down if it wasn’t built according to the specifications or you didn’t follow all the rules. If you refuse, they may hire someone to perform the demolition and then add a lien on your property in the amount of the cost. Lets hope no body is going that path.
What if the HOA Won’t Approve?
Sometimes, an HOA Architectural Review Board may not approve your proposed deck, patio and fence as is. Maybe they consider it too big or your color scheme is not in compliance with the established palette for the community. In this case, you have two options.
The first option is to make the HOA happy and modify your proposed construction. If you think that the HOA is being unreasonable, your second option is to appeal, but make sure you have something to defend your position:
- Check with other community members to see if any of them had the same type of deck built and it was approved.
- Check with your county clerk’s office to make sure your HOA’s rules are recorded there. Regulations that have not been properly recorded with the government are not enforceable.
- Check how old the current HOA covenants are. If they haven’t been updated since the 70s, you might get the community to support you in amending these outdated rules.
As you can see, dealing with an HOA approval may sound complicated and time-consuming. It pays to hire a deck builder who has prior experience with HOAs. So, make sure you put together all necessary documents, plan, timelines and approvals before starting your dream project.