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Feldsott Lee Pagano & Canfield
Orange County Homeowners Association Law Firm

What rights do homeowners' association members have?

When searching for your perfect home or condominium here in California, one of your requirements may be to have access to certain community amenities. You may already be aware that those perks usually come with paying dues to a homeowners' association. While HOAs often have authority over many of your actions, homeowners' association members also have rights.

California provides numerous protections for members, including the right to notice of board meetings, disclosures by the HOA and the ability to serve on the board. You may also inspect the association's records, communicate with other members and receive notice of and attend a disciplinary hearing prior to any final action. Documents you may review include everything from an annual report to the governing documents to tax returns and anything in between.

You also have the right to access electric vehicle charging stations, to modify a unit if you have a disability that requires it and to include items in your landscape that use little to no water. The HOA cannot keep you from getting into or out of your residence without first going through certain legal steps or meeting certain legal requirements. You may also install certain solar energy products and a satellite dish.

These are not all of the rights homeowners' association members are afforded by state law, but they provide you with an idea of what the HOA cannot prohibit or keep from you under ordinary circumstances. If you have questions regarding any of these rights or what additional rights you may have, you may want to consult with an attorney prior to your purchase. If you should find yourself in a dispute with your HOA regarding your rights, an attorney could prove invaluable in helping you rectify the issue.

Source:, "17 Legal Rights of Homeowners Living in HOAs", Beth Grimm, Accessed on Jan. 22, 2018

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