My Bylaws are below and appear to be clear that I cannot rent my  "Lot" for less than 30 days but I am just renting a portion of it.  They wrote this so there wouldn't be weekly home rental but they are trying to use it against me for Airbnb and it doesn't apply based on how I read it.  They are threatening a cease and desist letter but I think they are overstepping.  Thoughts?

 

Section 3 Prohbition of Renting for Transient or Hotel Purposes.  No Owner shall rent his Lot for transient or hotel purposes, which, for the purposes of this Declaration shall be defined as either a rental for any period less than 30 days or any rental if the lessee of the Low is provided customary hotel services.  Each permitted lease shall be in writing and shall be subject to this Declaration, the Bylaws, and the Rules and Regulations adopted hereunder and any failure of the lessee to comply with the terms of such documents shall be a default under the lease.  Other than the foregoing restrictions, each Owner shall have the full right to lease all or any portion of his Lot, subject to applicable City, State, and Federal regulations.

 

 

73 Replies

Re: Dealing with HOA interpretation of rules

in
Murphy, NC
Level 10

@David126

Agree with David - and the guest will have to complete (and be vetted by) the HOA tenant rental lease agreement.

 

And the unfortunate thing about fighting an HOA and involving legal support - is you will pay twice - as any legal fees incurred by the directors on behalf of the HOA will be eventually paid by all owners through quarterly fees or even a special assessment. You will not be thanked by your fellow owners for going forward with this if you chose to involve legal advice.

 

Sorry not to be more supportive - living under an HOA is always restrictive (for a good reason mostly) and if you want to make your own rules about your own property you need to live elsewhere.

 

Best Wishes.

Re: Dealing with HOA interpretation of rules

in
North Myrtle Beach, SC
Level 3

thanks for the input

1) they will not ratify the Bylaws, WAY too much work the way it is written

2) They cannot interview who leases and have no say, they are very hands off here

3) the verbiage is the only concern.  I spoke with 2 attorneys and they both said that it was drafted poorly and wouldn't hold up in court so I'm going to stand my ground.

Re: Dealing with HOA interpretation of rules

in
Stonington, CT
Level 10

Dang!

 

I need to get my real estate license in Myrtle Beach.

 

Up North, we look for "too much work".  Billable hours passed on to homeowners by way of assessment or higher condo fees.

 

Do you what you gotta do, @Mark384.  Fight the good fight.  That's what our country is all about.

 

In the meantime, do not allow bookings too far in advance in case things don't go your way.

 

Good luck, man!  I love your spirit!

 

Re: Dealing with HOA interpretation of rules

in
Houston, TX
Level 2

Hey Mark which attorney did you use for this process and how much are they charging? 

Re: Dealing with HOA interpretation of rules

in
Englewood, CO
Level 2

Please do share!

Re: Dealing with HOA interpretation of rules

in
Englewood, CO
Level 2

Hi Mark - do you mind sharing how this turned out for you?  

Re: Dealing with HOA interpretation of rules

in
Charleston, SC
Level 2

Hey @Mark384  - Can you tell me what attorneys you used? I also live in SC and am running into a similar issues but the bylaws are a bit vague and I live in the house full time. We are just looking to rent out 1 room of the house.

 

Thanks!

Heidi

Re: Dealing with HOA interpretation of rules

in
Aiea, HI
Level 3

So I will b in compliance if I list for 29 days or more? That's what the translucent jousting definition is in our contract (28days)l

Re: Dealing with HOA interpretation of rules

in
Melbourne Beach, FL
Level 10

No Owner shall rent his Lot for transient or hotel purposes, which, for the purposes of this Declaration shall be defined as either a rental for any period less than 30 days

 

Transient OR Hotel purposes.   If you've got someone staying for a week, they are transient, regardless of whether or not you wish to have a concierge set up a card table out front to stand there and greet them when as they come and go.

 

A week is less than 30 days, no matter how many lawyer friends you care to consult till you find one who is willing to argue the point for a fee.

 

You agreed to abide by the rules when you purchased the property.  You can't just decide the rules don't apply to you if you "Stand your ground"

Re: Dealing with HOA interpretation of rules

in
North Myrtle Beach, SC
Level 3

Mark, the definition of "Lot" in the bylaws is the WHOLE lot!  They did this to prevent weekly HOME rentals.  A room is a PORTION of the Lot.  And the verbiage is not to offer "hotel services".  Ambiguity is the fault of the drafter.  "Hotel Services" is not a legal definition and not defined in the Bylaws and cannot be assumed.  2 attorneys including one with a national name said they would get crushed in court.  Neither attorney has anything to gain from the advice.

Re: Dealing with HOA interpretation of rules

in
Como, CO
Level 10

I am intrigued as the basis of the Lawyer reaching that conclusion, the wording seem pretty clear to me.

David

Re: Dealing with HOA interpretation of rules

in
Melbourne Beach, FL
Level 10

To quote a famous lawyer who once wagged his finger and declared that he did not have sex with that woman....  "It depends on what the meaning of the word is is."

 

 

 

Re: Dealing with HOA interpretation of rules

in
Stonington, CT
Level 10

Oh, that rascal did cause us a few headaches.

 

Re: Dealing with HOA interpretation of rules

in
North Myrtle Beach, SC
Level 3

what is clear?  Lot is the boundaries of the property.  I am NOT renting the whole house, just the room.  The section was to prevent renting the entire HOME on a weekly basis but NOT a portion of the Lot

Re: Dealing with HOA interpretation of rules

in
Prescott, AZ
Level 10

@Mark384 , from a different angle: does your community allow short term rentals, then you have  a strong stand, as community rules supercede HOA rules. (like in San Fran and NY City, it is the city that changed the short term rental rules.) You need to get that permit first.

mostly, such HOA rules limiting short term rentals were implemented before homeowners  started renting through Airbnb, and are antiquitated. Consider the landmark 2014 Surpreme Court ruling - Wilkinson vs. Chiwawa Communities Ass.:

The Court decided that vacation rentals are consistent with RESIDENTIAL use and are not considered commercial use . (usually HOAs say that rentals less than 6 months are commercial use). The Court also decided that such limitation goes against the individual property rights of each owner in the community. Furthermore, HOA regulations must be in accordance with the law of the land at all times, so if your or my community endorses such use of one's property,and we pay transient lodging taxes, what leg does the HOA stand on? Perhaps they are just trying to badger you into submission but know that they don't really have the legal power to enforce it.

Here in my city, they make a big difference if I am at the property at all times myself (I am, even though the apartment I am renting has a separate entrance) or if I am absent. for me, being there at all times, it was really easy to get the city permit, but if I were absent, then all sorts of other stipulations (and fees!) enter the picture, like I need to have an inspection, I need to inform my neighbours, etc.. that is where it could get hairy with an HOA.

So whT is your situation? are you there when you rent out , or not? Good luck!

 

Join the conversation