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Old 06-18-2007, 03:12 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Common Area Repairs by HOA

In my CC & R's it says patios and carports are "common areas" and must be maintained and repaired by the HOA, to what degree does this have to be done. My patios both have severe dry wraught and need to be replaced, they are directly over the carport area (holds 5 cars) and directly effect the integrity of the structure of the carport. My HOA is stating the repair is my responsibility...what are my rights with this?? Ho do I go about exercising my rights?
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Old 06-18-2007, 08:14 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bethcourtney View Post
In my CC & R's it says patios and carports are "common areas" and must be maintained and repaired by the HOA, to what degree does this have to be done. My patios both have severe dry wraught and need to be replaced, they are directly over the carport area (holds 5 cars) and directly effect the integrity of the structure of the carport. My HOA is stating the repair is my responsibility...what are my rights with this?? Ho do I go about exercising my rights?
Without seeing the entire regulations and bylaws of the association, it's a little hard to answer this one completely. Your initial contact should be with the head of the HOA, in my opinion. You're correct in that typical associations are responsible for 'common areas,' as long as this is specifically stated in your bylaws. Another example would be expecting the homeowner in the middle level of a multi-level building to be responsible for roof repairs several floors above. On the other hand, I do believe you'd need at the very least a licensed contractor to inspect your particular patio and determine that there are in fact structural issues at work here. I'd also have him/her indicate the cause of the damage, i.e. dry rot, extended exposure to the elements, etc. From your description, this sounds more like a wooden (or similar) balcony structure on the exterior of your unit and at least on the 2nd floor. Again, typically, that is considered "common area" and as such, typically the responsibility of the association.

Just an opinion here, but I believe you may be able to argue this one by sheer virtue of your balcony's location (if what I've posted above is accurate.) After all, you're probably also not responsible for any settlement or foundation cracks in the exterior facade of the property...the condition is similar, in my opinion. You may also want to check with your city building department, to see what your local code requires. If you have a safety/structure issue (and it does sound that's the case,) you may even have recourse with them as well. It's certainly worth a telephone call to find out, in my opinion. I've found it always helps add credence to your case if you can get a city or county (or even state) agency involved. Just understand that a portion of the repairs may also be considered your responsibility as well.

It's a given, of course, that you can always contact an attorney if none of your efforts work there. Good luck to you.

Last edited by TheJury'sStillOut; 06-18-2007 at 08:43 PM.
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