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HOA president’s father should not have been on ballot

Q: In my community, the HOA president’s father was allowed to nominate himself for the board. He does own a separate unit from his daughter. No one ran against him, and he was elected to the board.

My understanding is this is not allowed since his daughter is already on the board.

I do understand that he can be “duly elected” by the board, following the election, if they are unable to find anyone else willing to serve.

While it may just be an issue of “how it was achieved” am I not right that his nomination should not have been allowed nor he be on the election ballot? But after the election, he could have been duly elected, by the board, if no other owners were willing to serve? And then he is only allowed to serve until the next election. Correct?

I tried to speak to the community manager about it, and she stated since he owned a home separate from his daughter, he could run and be elected and that the law only applied to family members in the same household, which I believe is incorrect.

I am not opposed to him being on the board, I just believe the way it was done was illegal and could come back to haunt the HOA in the future.

A: I would caution associations about having family members serving on the board of directors at the same time. If a complaint is made to the Nevada Real Estate Division, your association better be able to document the process of how the second family member was elected or appointed.

You are correct that the father should not have been on the ballot since a family member was already serving on the board. NRS 116.31034 (13) states, “If a person is not eligible to be a candidate for or member of the executive board or an officer of the association pursuant to any provision of this chapter, the association:

(a.) Must not place his or her name on the ballot; and

(b.) Must prohibit such a person from serving as a member of the executive board or an officer of the association.”

There is a second part of the law that would allow the father to serve on the board for a period of one year or when the next election period comes, whichever is sooner. Under NRS 116.31034 (12) “a person, other than a person appointed by the declarant, may:

(a.) Be a candidate for or member of the executive board; and

(b.) Reside in a unit with, be married to, be domestic partners with, or be related by blood, adoption or marriage within the third degree of consanguinity or affinity to another person who is also a member of the executive board or is an officer of the association;

(c.) If the number of candidates nominated for membership on the executive board is less than or equal to the number of members to be elected to the executive board.”

In the your association, the sequence should have been as follows: The father should not have been on the ballot. After the election was over, if there was a vacant position, the father could have been appointed for a one-year period.

Q: Still enjoy reading your column and continue to find it very informative. I have two questions for you today:

The board did a major renovation to our entryway landscaping two years ago. Cost about $30,000. The reserve study says the board should budget for this every five years. Well, they decided to redo it again. They had all the plants pulled up that was installed two years ago. Cost once again around $30,000. This really seems fiscally irresponsible considering they raised our rates to help pay for this. Is there any way to prevent future boards from doing this?

I thought I saw an article from you were you stated that by law the board was supposed to show a general list of homeowner infractions. I haven’t been able to find anything in Nevada Revised Statutes about this. Can you point me in the right direction? Keep up the good work.

A: Before you take any action, you need to address your question to the board as there may be a legitimate response to why the entryway landscaping had to be redone.

As to preventing a board from being fiscally irresponsible, either you recall the board or elect new directors at the next election.

As to the second question, please refer to NRS 116.31175 (5).

Q: My community has a three-person board. One board member resigned. Can the board continue with two members?

A: Yes, but it would be prudent to find a third board member.

Q: We recently bought a brand new property. We are very excited about our brand new home. We wanted to do the landscaping, but we didn’t know that we had to do paperwork and summit plans to the homeowners association. Now, we have to wait 34 to 45 days! My question is: If we submit the paperwork and continue with the project without a letter of approval from the HOA, what can they do? What kind of consequences can happen? And are there laws that protect the homeowners from situations like these?

A: One of my recommendations to all new homebuyers is to read your rules and regulations and your architectural guidelines. It will save you much aggravation with your association.

If you continue work before the architectural committee or board of directors approves your plans, you can be fined on a weekly basis, and if your plans do not meet the guidelines, you could be forced to remove your new landscaping and replace it with another plan that is acceptable.

Barbara Holland is a certified property manager and holds the supervisory community manager certificate with the state of Nevada. She is an author and educator on real estate management. Questions may be sent to holland744o@gmail.com.

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