Arizona HOA Law Q & A

Written by Posted On Monday, 30 March 2015 07:49

Legal issues can be as dry as crackers but when it comes to HOA issues, things heat up fast! Arizona and Scottsdale specifically have a lot of HOA or managed communities. Knowing the most up to date rules and legal regulations is important to all residents and owners of properties within any HOA. The contracts used by Arizona real estate agents have a new form called the HOA Condominium/Planned Community Addendum that recently went into affect. Below is a list of questions and answers about recent HOA Rules that may be of interest if you are thinking of selling your property in the near future.

How much can my HOA charge me for my documents?

Answer:  According to Arizona Senate Bill SB1149 (2011) Fees may only be collected at COE (close of escrow). Those approved fees are:

  • $400 or less for Disclosure and Resale Transfer Fee
  • $100 Rush Fee
  • $50 Update Fee
  • If the Disclosure/Transfer fee was less than $400 on 1/1/2010, the fee may be increased to a max of 20% per year until the $400 ceiling is reached.
  • A Rush Fee of $100 may only be charge once at COE and only if requested less than 72 hours in return as a "Rush"
  • An Update Fee of $50 may be charged if more than 30 days has passed since the original Disclosure and Transfer document delivery date.
  • No more than one Disclsoure and Transfer Fee may be collected (per association or community)
  • Any/all 3rd party fees must be included in the $400 total fee such as Condo Certs etc.

Bottom line here is that the fees that your HOA may charge you are seriously regulated and they must give them to you without an initial charge. Any fees have to be paid only at COE. They may try to get money from you before that but if they do, simply refer to this rule and tell them no. If they persist contact me and I'll assist you.

Can an HOA prohibit a homeowner from placing a "for sale" or "for rent"  sign on their yard or property?

Answer: No, as long as the statutory requirements for the sign are met and the HOA does not prohibit or restrict leasing. The sign must be commercially produced and not exceed 18 X 24 inches.

Can an HOA require property owners to use a particular type of sign frame to display industry standard signs?

Answer: No. The sign may be attached to a sign frame that is L or H shaped as long as the sign meets statutory requirements.

Can a real estate agent combine the sign with the rider to create one larger sign? 

Answer: No. The statutes prescribe the industry standard size for both the sign and the rider..

Can an HOA require the use of a particular sign (i.e. an association approved sign)?

Answer: No. A.R.S 33-1808 (F)(1) provides that the association shall not require the use of particular signs indicating an open house or real property for sale as long as the sign is the industry standard sign. Your real estate agent is able to use their own normal signs and the HOA cannot require them to use the HOA signs.  If they argue with you, give them the bill number and refer them to the lawsuit Hack vs. The Ranch at Prescott HOA or Hawk v. PC Village Association, Inc. . Both of these suits were filed and won by homeowners who wanted to display standard real estate signs when selling their properties. The law is clear and held up in both cases. Don't be bullied by an over reaching HOA or Community Manager!

Is the HOA Condominium/Planned Community Addendum Required With All Real Estate Contracts?

Answer: No. It is not but nearly all brokerages are using the form to protect both buyers and sellers in a transaction. This new form formally discloses the exact HOA or Community details to all parties at the time of the initial offer. Buyers should be made aware of the monthly fees to the HOA and Master Association (if any) as well as any Transfer Fees, Capital Improvement Fees and Disclosure Fees.

What If The Home Seller Doesn't Want To Fill Out The Form?

Answer: That is a big problem! There will be some people who "don't do details" or are scared to actually call the HOA themselves due to bad past experiences but it is really a vital disclosure in the transaction. Buyers need to be aware of the correct monthly fees as well as any large transfer or capital improvement fees. This can make or break a transaction. The buyer needs to have the correct numbers in place prior to making an offer. Think about it, if you are the home seller, don't you want the buyer to know as much as possible up front to prevent future surprises that could cause the buyer to opt out of the deal later on? Please take the time to fill out the form correctly at the time of the listing contract. I as your listing agent would love to fill it out for you but I am not allowed to for obvious legal reasons. I can help walk you through the form and even sit alongside you as you phone the HOA initially. We can do it together if you are just overwhelmed by it. That is my job when representing you. When the shoe is on the other foot and I represent the buyer in the transaction, I need for the form to be filled out and uploaded into the MLS before I write the offer for my client. They have to see the numbers and so does their lender. If the fees are off by even a small amount, it is possible the the buyer might not even qualify to buy the property. That is the key to the whole deal right there. Please please please fill out the form for us and disclose the correct numbers!

Scottsdale_HOA_Addendum will allow you to see the actual form by clicking on the link. This is the sample form and not to be used but preview it and contact me with your questions. It will be my pleasure to take what some view as a complicated thing and make it easy for you!


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Shawn Jardine

Shawn Jardine has been helping people buy and sell homes since 1990. Real Estate is her full time profession and her clients are her priority. She knows the Scottsdale and Phoenix   market like the back of her hand! Market conditions are constantly changing and Shawn is always in touch with what the market is doing both on a national and local level. Top-notch customer service is her hallmark and her rate of repeat client transactions and referrals is an indicator of a high level of success.Shawn has assisted hundreds of families with the home buying and selling process.  She works extra hard to remove that stress from your real estate equation.

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