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What is a homeowners’ association in Texas?

A homeowners’ association, or HOA, is owned by the property owners in that particular community. The HOA is governed by laws that apply to that association in particular and consists of a board of directors or a similar group of people who have been appointed to make decisions. Many HOAs in Texas are nonprofit organizations, which means that they are registered with the Secretary of State.

There is a particular set of laws that govern HOAs and it is the responsibility of the members of that association to follow the laws as they have been laid out. The following laws apply to HOAs in Texas:

  • Texas Property Code, Chapter 202: This chapter of the law deals with restrictive covenants, which is a written agreement or promise that restricts land use in order to preserve the value and enjoyment of land connected to it. This law also discusses the construction and enforcement of restrictive covenants. In this particular chapter, there is a list of restrictions that are not legal and the chapter also contains a provision regarding the HOA’s responsibility to file certain documents with the county.
  • Texas Property Code, Chapter 209: This is the Texas Residential Property Owners Protection Act, which is a Texas law that includes several issues, such as board governance, voting and elections, recordkeeping and the property owner’s right to review records, required notices, foreclosures for assessment liens and rules on leases.
  • Texas Business Organizations Code, Chapter 22: This chapter discusses the creation of nonprofit corporations. Considering that many HOAs choose to be nonprofit organizations, this chapter offers guidance on exactly how the HOA should go about forming and operating their nonprofit organization.

There are some documents that are essential to an HOA. These include:

  • Subdivision plats: This document states the location of various lots, easements and common areas.
  • Declaration of covenants, restrictions and conditions: This document contains a list of the rights and responsibilities that the HOA and the property association owe to one another. The document also includes limitations on exactly how the property should be used, built and maintained.
  • Articles of incorporation: This document (also known as a certificate of formation), is filed with the Secretary of State so that it formally establishes the HOA as a legal entity. The document contains basic information about the HOA as well as information on the board of directors.
  • Bylaws: The bylaws are a list of instructions on how the property owner’s association should be managed and run. The document also contains information on meetings, elections and information on how the board of directors runs the HOA.

Solid legal advice by a POA Texas attorney

Property owners association law is very specified and if you are experiencing an issue with your POA or you are at the beginning of the process to establish a POA, the seasoned advice of a POA Texas attorney may make your job a lot easier. Your attorney can help you to achieve your goal with the POA as well as protecting or increasing property values at the same time. It is important that you follow Texas law pertaining to POAs and that everything is done right so that your POA runs smoothly.