Why do I have to pay assessments?As a property owner in the subdivision, you have a fiduciary obligation to maintain the common areas of the subdivision (entrances, park areas, common ground, etc.) Through acceptance of your title to your property, you also assume joint ownership of all the common areas as outlined in your indenture and plat.
Why am I a part of this subdivision?Before the subdivision was started, a plat plan and indenture was filed with the county. All lots shown on the plat plan are subject to the indenture by wording on the plat map and wording in the indenture. If your lot is in that map and isn’t specifically excluded by the indentures, you are subject to the indentures. Removing a lot from the obligation of the indentures would require amending the indentures in accordance with the procedures set out. The point of a subdivision is to protect property values of the homes in the subdivisions. Keeping good control over indenture violations keeps everybody’s property values up. Who would want to buy a home next door to an unkempt property? An attractive surrounding neighborhood makes your house more attractive to buyers.
Nobody told me about a subdivision before I bought, so I’m not part of it.The deed to your property, along with carrying the subdivision name in your legal description, will state “subject to indentures and/or restrictions, if any”. If this wording is left off of your deed, it is an error. By accepting your deed, you are accepting the terms of the “indenture and/or restrictions.” It is not required by any law that these indentures be provided to you by anybody including the realtor or closing company. They are part of the public record and, unfortunately, that charges you with finding them. It is required, however, to be disclosed by the seller prior to purchase that a subdivision with assessment fees does exist.
How do I get a copy of the indentures?A copy of the indentures can be found on this web site click on "Business . A paper copy can also be obtained by requesting it from one of the Trustees, only one copy will be provided at "No Charge" second copies can be obtained for $2
The grass needs cuttingOne of the obligations of the trustees of your subdivision is the maintenance of the common areas. So, if you have specific concerns please contact a trustee to get the problem resolved.
Contact A Trustee here
Why file a lien?The lien is to acknowledge the delinquency of an assessment as levied against a property. This is the initial step in the collection process. Liens will not force a delinquent owner to pay an overdue amount immediately, but it will prevent them from refinancing or selling their home without paying the full amount due. Title companies have a real struggle finding out if a property is a part of the subdivision and pays assessments. In many cases, they only have the seller’s word to go by. If any owner owes many years of assessments, they may not be as forthcoming with that information as they need to be. Filing the lien prevents that from happening.
Why is insurance required for subdivisions?Not only is it a terrible idea not to have liability insurance, most indentures require it. If the common areas are not protected by liability insurance, the homeowners would have to pay for any award arising from lawsuits resulting from injuries, etc. Directors & Officers insurance (D&O) isn’t always required, but it’s no less important. D&O protects officers of the subdivision from lawsuit costs arising from lawsuits. It does not protect against fraud or any other illegal acts, only decisions made in good faith in line with the indentures.
Nobody comes to meetings. What can we do?Unfortunately, this is one of the most common complaints we hear. We’ve found that it is not a case they don’t care, it’s just on the bottom of a long priority list. The only time attendance will go up at meetings is when something “big” happens such as an increase in the assessments. Something “big” is usually never something good.
What’s Neighborhood Watch?This is a wonderful program run by local police departments. Join it and KEEP IT GOING! The subdivision will have “block captains” that will receive regular listings of all crimes and crime trends in the area. This information isn’t readily available anywhere else and is invaluable. This information is then disseminated to the homeowners. When possible, the police will make an officer available to speak at subdivision meetings to provide face-to-face information.
We can’t stress enough what a wonderful program this is. Unfortunately it will also suffer from nonuse. Keep it going. You will learn about burglaries and other criminal activity in your subdivision that you wouldn’t have heard of otherwise. Criminals have been caught through this program.
How do we stop/slow down speeders?
Another tough problem. The fire department will NOT allow speed bumps or saddle horses to be installed to slow down speeders. It slows down their response time and tears up their equipment. Some police departments have stopped putting up the portable radar signs. They encourage kids to see how high they can get it to register.
The best solution is to keep in touch with the local police department (your neighborhood watch officer, see above) and volunteer some driveways for the police to sit in and hand out tickets. Five times out of ten, the people complaining about the speeding will be the first ones to get a ticket. The speeders are, in most cases, the residents of the subdivision.