Late last week, Aaron Acker and I co-presented a legislative update session at the Colorado Bar Association course Advanced HOA Issues: Communities in Distress. Aaron, the HOA Information Officer with the Colorado Division of Real Estate (“Division”), focused on the role of the Division relating to homeowners’ associations (“HOAs”) and provided a synopsis of the types of HOA-related complaints his office is receiving. Here’s an overview of what Aaron shared with the attendees:
►The number one concern that homeowners express to the Division is they want to know how their associations are spending money.
► Many complaints allege that board members and management refuse to produce financial records of the association for inspection.
► Homeowners are telling the Division that boards and management are not allowing them to speak at meetings and are intimidating them.
►The 3 P’s (parking, pets and paint) are only a small subset of the complaints the Division has received.
► Most of the complaints received from homeowners relate to issues addressed in SB 100 which was signed into law in 2005. As you will recall, among other things, SB 100 addresses the requirement that associations adopt responsible governance policies, the ability of homeowners to utilize xeriscaping, the ability of residents to display the American flag, the parking of emergency vehicles and the display of political signs in HOAs.
Aaron Acker acknowledged that the Division does not have the authority to investigate these complaints and they only represent one side of the story. However, the complaints do provide an overview of issues present in HOAs.
A formal report will be submitted to the Director of the Division of Real Estate in December outlining in part the categories of complaints received by the Division. We expect this will provide the foundation for the future regulation of HOAs in Colorado.