Just as every homeowner in an association must comply with restrictions placed upon them by virtue of being a part of the association, so too must a property owners’ association (POA) enforce them. Failure to do so, in a timely and correct fashion, could mean that the POA loses their authority to enforce the restriction entirely. Proper notice is one aspect of the process which must be done within the law.
The Texas Residential Property Owners Protection Act
POA’s have a number of penalties they can apply to a homeowner who violates a deed restriction, such as suspending usage of a common area, levying a fine or filing suit. However, before any of these things can occur, Texas Property Code Section 209.006 specifies what notice the POA must first give.
The POA must give the owner written notice of the violation, via certified mail. The notice must describe the violation which has been committed and, if this results in the owner owing the POA money, it must state the amount.
The notice must inform the owner that they have a reasonable amount of time to cure the violation and avoid penalty, assuming the violation can be cured and poses no threat to health and safety. It should be noted that the statute does not define what a reasonable amount of time is – it may vary from one situation to the next. Furthermore, the notice must specify a date by which the violation is to be cured.
The notice must advise the owner that they may request a hearing on the issue by the 30th day after the date the notice was mailed. It must also advise them that they may have special rights under federal law, such as a member of the military who is on active duty.
Sometimes a POA must enforce a deed restriction more than once. If the owner has had the same violation within six months, and they were properly notified, the rights to a reasonable amount of time to cure the violation and to request a hearing no longer apply.