Be Thankful

Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire.  If you did, what would there be to look forward to?

Be thankful when you don’t know something, for it gives you the opportunity to learn.

Be thankful for the difficult times. During those times, you grow.

Be thankful for your limitations, because they give you opportunities for improvement.

Be thankful for each new challenge, because it will build your strength and character.

Be thankful for your mistakes. They will teach you valuable lessons.

Be thankful when you’re tired and weary, because it means you’ve made a difference.

It’s easy to be thankful for the good things. A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are also thankful for the setbacks.

Gratitude can turn a negative into a positive. Find a way to be thankful for your troubles, and they can become your blessings.

Author Unknown

Short-Term Rentals (“STRs”), which can encompass everything from nightly rentals to thirty day rentals to six month rentals, have become a hot button issue in common interest communities since the inception of websites such as airbnb, VRBO and HomeAway.  The market for STRs in Colorado increased exponentially with the legalization of recreational marijuana.  The dramatic increase in STRs has compelled many common interest communities to consider ways to restrict, or at least regulate, leasing in their communities.

When a common interest community wants to restrict leasing to eliminate or control STRs, the first question is whether this can be done by the Board through the adoption of a rule or policy, or whether it requires an amendment to the covenants upon approval of the required percentage of the owners.  The prevailing view is that leasing restrictions may only be imposed by an amendment to the recorded covenants, and not by the adoption of a rule.

The Colorado Common Interest Ownership Act, C.R.S. § 38-33.3-101 et seq. (“CCIOA”) contains several provisions regarding the use of property within common interest communities.  C.R.S. § 38-33.3-205(1)(l) requires that restrictions on the use, occupancy, and alienation of units be contained in the recorded declaration.  C.R.S. § 38-33.3-217(4.5) requires that no amendment may change the uses to which any unit is restricted in the absence of a vote or agreement of at least sixty-seven percent (67%) of owners, or any larger percentage specified in the declaration.  Similarly, the Restatement of the Law on Property/Servitudes provides that, absent specific authorization in the covenants, an HOA does not have the power to adopt rules that restrict the use or occupancy of individually owned units.

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Board members often ask us, “What is the standard of conduct for the board of a common interest community?”  The standard of conduct is known as the Business Judgment Rule.  According to this rule of law, actions taken by directors of a nonprofit corporation in good faith, that are within the powers of the corporation, and that reflect a reasonable and honest exercise of judgment, are valid actions in accordance with the Business Judgment Rule.  Not only does the Business Judgment Rule provide a standard by which directors can measure their conduct, it also provides a legal defense to many claims against the association.

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Funny story.  A condominium association I represent is located in such a way that I could see their amenities – a small swimming pool and tennis courts – from my office window.  One summer, the association was involved in some pretty contentious litigation over a serious, ongoing covenant violation.  We were conducting depositions in my conference room and, during a break, the manager and I stepped into my office.  I happened to glance out the window and noticed a dog running around on the pool deck.  I pointed it out to the manager, he made a phone call, and we went back into the deposition.  Later that day, the manager sent me this photo, which the dog’s owner had sent him by way of apology.

 

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