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CCOC Decision Summary

#288-G, Oak Springs Townhouse Association v. Butler (February 29, 1996) (Panel: Savage, Chairman)

The homeowners association (HOA) complained that the homeowner (HO) installed a roof over his deck without permission and requested that he be ordered to remove it.

The evidence at the hearing showed that the HO, a former member of the HOA board of directors, applied for permission to install a skylight in the roof of his deck.  This application was not only the first time that the HOA learned that there was a roof over the deck, but that the HO had constructed a deck as well.  The HO had never received, let alone applied for, permission to construct the deck or its roof.  However, the HOA did not object to the deck, but did reject the application for the skylight, and notified the HO that the roof was a violation of the architectural rules and because it was not in harmony with the general design of the community; the HOA did offer to allow the HO to install an open, trellis-type roof.  There are no other roofed decks in the community, but there are other trellis-type roofs.  The HO refused to remove the roof.  The HO testified he had received oral approval for the roof from the CA president at a board meeting but there was no supporting evidence for this claim.  The Covenants prohibit making any change to the dwellings without the prior approval of the CA.

The hearing panel held that the CA properly followed its procedures before ruling that the roof was a violation of the community rules. Even if the CA president had approved the roof, he had no authority to act by himself, and the rules require written approval.  The HO's roof was not like any other roofed decks in the community, because it was a solid roof, and the other roofs were either open, trellis-type, or louvered.  The panel held that based on the evidence, the HOA acted reasonably when it rejected the application for a solid roof, and it ordered the HO to remove or modify his roof according to the conditions given by the HOA within 90 days.

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