Manager Licensure Exam Available February 1st!

The Division of Real Estate has just announced that the Community Association Manager licensure exam will be available to take on February 1st!  Here's the latest news from the Division of Real Estate:

Community Association Manager Examination Available February 1, 2015

The Division of Real Estate has contracted with Psychological Services, Inc. (PSI), as the testing vendor who will administer the community association manager licensing examination.  The state exam is comprised of two parts; a general portion and a state specific portion designed to determine the competency of the applicant with regard to legal documents, Colorado Statutes, and other core competencies.  Applicants will be able to sit for the exam beginning February 1, 2015.  Pursuant to emergency rule A-4, applicants must hold a qualified education credential prior to sitting for the exam.  This includes one or more of the credentials set forth in § 12-61-1003(5)(a)(I)(A),(B),(C), and (D), C.R.S., or § 12-61-1003(5)(d), C.R.S., or complete the Division created alternative qualifying education.  Please click here for a list of approved Colorado occupational schools offering the 24-hour qualifying education course. The cost of the examination will be $90.00, which includes the state and general portions. Applicants must pass both portions of the exam and an applicant may retake any failed portion(s).  The cost to retake one or both portions of the examination will be $85.00.  Additionally, a passing score for either part of the exam is valid for one year.  To register for the examination, please visit PSI Exams Online.  Prior to sitting for the exam, the Division encourages all applicants to read the Candidate Information Bulletin.  The bulletin provides information about the examination and provides an examination content outline and the number of testing items in each topic area.

Posted In Community Association News
Permalink

Hearing on Permanent Rule-Making for Manager Licensure Scheduled

The Colorado Division of Real Estate has announced that a hearing on permanent rule-making for manager licensure will be held on Wednesday, March 4, 2015, at 10:00 am at the Ralph L. Carr Colorado Judicial Center in Conference Room 1D. 

We have heard an outcry from management companies of every size that the emergency rules relating to insurance will put management companies out of business.  This is your chance to attend the hearing to testify on insurance and other important rules which are under consideration by the Division.  Since the Division has given so much advance notice of the hearing, make sure to clear your calendar for that day and attend! 

Here's the formal announcement from DORA and the Division of Real Estate:

Continue Reading Posted In From Capitol Hill/Legislation
Permalink

Frozen? Snow and Ice - Don't Let It Go

Winter in Colorado is sure to bring cold weather, snow, and urgent phone calls about broken water lines and slip-and-fall accidents on common areas. The problems usually start when the temperature begins to warm up after a cold spell or heavy snowfall. Water suddenly streams out of broken pipes, or snow melts and then freezes when the temperature drops at night. Whatever the circumstances, managers and board members can attest to the amount of work involved responding to owners, sorting through damages and injuries, dealing with insurance, and trying to understand legal obligations for water and slip-and-fall incidents. Most of us would love to find a magic wand that we could wave to make these problems disappear. Unfortunately, magic is not a reliable solution.

Associations can best position themselves for dealing with slip-and-fall situations by planning ahead and communicating with owners along the way. If your association is not sure what responsibility it has to remove snow and ice hazards from common areas, here are some risk management steps to help.

Review the association’s governing documents to determine responsibilities for snow removal. Different communities have different responsibilities, and your documents give direction. A condominium community may have the general obligation to remove snow from the common elements, while townhome documents may only require the association to take care of parking lots. A failure to comply with the covenants could result in claims of breach by the association, so confirming responsibilities up-front is crucial.

Continue Reading Posted In Your Governing Documents
Permalink

Bill Introduced to Protect HOAs from the Financial Consequences of Prolonged Public Trustee Foreclosures

Representative Kit Roupe (R-Colorado Springs) has introduced House Bill 15-1113 (“HB 1113”) in an attempt to protect HOAs in Colorado from the financial consequences of lenders continuing the sale dates of public trustee foreclosures. HB 1113 would require lenders who continue the foreclosure sale beyond the first required sale date, to pay the assessments of the individual they are foreclosing upon until the lender actually sells the home. However, in an attempt to be fair to the lenders, Representative Roupe has also built into the bill exceptions to this assessment payment requirement. 

Under Colorado law, once a lender commences a public trustee foreclosure on a home, the lender is required to set the foreclosure sale date within 110 to 125 days. The lenders are then permitted to continue the foreclosure sale date for up to one year. It’s common for some lenders to continue the sale date over and over. It’s also not unheard of that after the sale date has been continued for one year, some lenders will withdraw the foreclosure and start the process and continuances all over again. 

Continue Reading Posted In From Capitol Hill/Legislation
Permalink

Senator Ulibarri Seeks to Incentivize Construction of Affordable Housing

Senator Jesse Ulibarri (D-Commerce City) has introduced Senate Bill 15-079 (“SB 79”) to create a statewide affordable housing investment fund to promote the construction of affordable housing across Colorado. This is an honorable goal.

SB 79 would raise funds through imposing a $2 surcharge on every document recorded with every county clerk and recorder in Colorado. To be clear, this $2 surcharge is on each document recorded and not on every page of a document which is recorded.

 

Is a recorder surcharge a good way to raise funds to promote the construction of affordable housing? Well it’s never easy to raise money for good causes like this one and a recorder surcharge is probably as good an approach as any. Will this bill make it through the Senate State, Veterans & Military Affairs Committee? While the prospects of survival probably aren’t very good, only time will tell . . .

Posted In From Capitol Hill/Legislation
Permalink

First Construction Defect Bill is a Whopper!

As predicted, the first construction defect bill of the session has been introduced in Colorado and it’s a real whopper! Senator Ray Scott (R-Mesa County) has introduced Senate Bill 15-091 (“SB 91”), which would cut the statute of repose in half for construction defects.   

While statutes of limitations and repose for construction defects can be very complicated to figure out in Colorado, the statute of repose governs the timeframe during which a homeowner can bring legal action for construction defects after substantial completion of their home has taken place. SB 91 reduces the 6 year period of time currently permitted under Colorado law to 3 years. In addition, if a defect is discovered in the second or third year after substantial completion of the home has occurred, the owner of the home will only have 1 year to bring their legal action. This provision provides a double whammy by cutting the current 2 year statute of limitations in half! 

Continue Reading Posted In From Capitol Hill/Legislation
Permalink

Hierarchy of Rules

You probably read plenty of articles on our blog in which we remind associations to ensure they have adopted and are enforcing their responsible governance policies and rules and regulations.  While owners have a legal obligation to comply with the covenants and rules, this may not extend to rules that are in violation of or contrary to local, state or federal law.

Continue Reading Posted In Covenant Enforcement
Permalink

Manager Licensure "Modification" Bill Introduced

Representative Dan Thurlow (R-Grand Junction) has introduced House Bill 15-1040 (“HB 1040”). The bill is intended to greatly reduce the individuals who are required to be licensed by the Division of Real Estate as community association managers. Frankly, if you look at the practical implications of the bill, HB 1040 would essentially destroy most of the manager licensure requirements which were intended to protect folks living in common interest communities and to elevate the profession of community association management. 

HB 1040 has been assigned to the House State, Veterans & Military Affairs Committee (“State Affairs Committee”) where it is almost certain that this bill will die. In a nutshell, if passed, HB 1040 would provide:

Continue Reading Posted In From Capitol Hill/Legislation
Permalink

2015 Colorado Legislative Session Gets Underway!

This morning, the first regular session of the 70th Colorado General Assembly will formally convene and is currently slated to adjourn on May 6th. Unlike last year when the Democrats controlled the House and Senate, this year the Republicans will control the Senate by 1 seat and the Democrats will control the House by 3 seats. These are very slim margins indeed for both chambers! 

The conventional wisdom of some is that split chambers are positive for the citizens of Colorado, because it forces both parties to cross the aisle to work together for the common good of Coloradoans. While some may argue that this is painfully naive, for now I’m signing onto this perspective. While I am hoping that I am not wrong, I will call myself out on this blog if extreme partisanship ultimately rules the 70th General Assembly!

 

Will this be a big legislative session for HOAs? As always, only time will tell. However, there’s no question that we will see a variety of bills addressing construction defects and the creation of more affordable housing stock. Since many of these bills are still on the drawing board, I cannot report on any specifics until they are formally introduced. In addition, I suspect we will see one or more bills intended to “clean-up” the community association manager licensure law and will report on the specifics of those bills when introduced. 

Continue Reading Posted In From Capitol Hill/Legislation
Permalink

Division of Real Estate Publishes Emergency Rules

The Colorado Division of Real Estate has just published emergency interim rules on community association manager licensure.  The rules will go into effect today and will continue in effect through May 6, 2015.  Here is the notice from the Division of Real Estate with links to the emergency rules:

 

***Important Notice***


Notice of Emergency Rule Adoption 
Community Association Manager Licensing

(Effective January 6, 2015 through May 6, 2015)


On January 2, 2015 the Director of the Division of Real Estate (Division) held an emergency rule-making hearing to take public testimony with regard to the community association manager emergency rules pertaining to the education, testing, licensing and insurance requirements needed for licensure.  As a result of the hearing and recommendations received, the Division has incorporated changes to the proposed emergency rules of January 2, 2015.  The Director of the Division finds that immediate adoption of the emergency rules is imperatively necessary to comply with state law and for the preservation of public health, safety or welfare and that compliance with the rule-making requirements of § 24-4-103, C.R.S., applicable to non-emergency rules, would be contrary to public interest.  Therefore, on January 6, 2015 the following emergency rules were adopted and will remain in effect for 120 days, expiring on May 6, 2015.

As the emergency rules will expire on May 6, the Division will conduct a permanent rule-making hearing at the end of February or beginning of March to consider for adoption all the program rules.  The specific date and location of the hearing will be noticed to the public by the middle of January when the proposed rules are noticed with the Colorado Secretary of State.   As with all rule-making in Colorado, public comments will be accepted by the Division once the rules are noticed and public testimony will be heard at the hearing.

 

 

Posted In From Capitol Hill/Legislation
Permalink