A California homeowner association recently received nationwide attention after its board of directors passed a rule requiring homeowners to keep their garage doors open on weekdays between 8am and 4pm. The rule came in response to a homeowner in the community that was permitting occupants or tenants to reside in his/her garage. Residents violating the rule were faced with a potential $200.00 fine. Fortunately, the rule has since been retracted after several homeowners complained that leaving their garage doors open during the day exposed them to theft.
Section 302 of the Colorado Common Interest Ownership Act (CCIOA) and most governing documents of common interest communities permit the adoption of rules and regulations. The board of directors has a great deal of discretion in passing rules and regulations, however, courts have long held that the rules must be reasonable and cannot be arbitrary.
I normally advise boards that the fiduciary duty of the board is to pursue and enforce known or readily apparent violations rather than attempting to investigate and uncover potential violations. In this case, it appears that the association should have enforced the occupancy restriction against the homeowner violating the restriction and left it at that. Do you agree?
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