Category Archives: Governing Documents

Court Defers to Association’s Interpretation of its Bylaws

The Washington Court of Appeals recently held that an association’s board of directors was validly constituted and properly passed bylaw amendments, so the board (and the management company as the board’s agent) had the authority to charge and collect fines and fees. Parker Estates Homeowners Ass’n v. Pattison, No. 47402-6-II, 2016 WL 7468226, at *1…

Is Short-Term Leasing a “Commercial Use”?

In Houston v. Wilson Mesa Ranch Homeowners Association, Inc., the Colorado Court of Appeals held that short-term rentals did not violate a covenant prohibiting commercial use of a unit. However, this ruling did not indicate that all restrictions on short-term rentals are unenforceable. Although this case was decided in Colorado, and it is not binding…

Washington State Supreme Court Resurrects Rental Restrictions for Many Condo Associations

On April 28, 2016, the Washington State Supreme Court issued an order in a case called Bilanko v. Barclay Court which, in effect, reverses its decision in Filmore v. Centre Pointe from 2015 – but only for associations that adopted their rental caps more than a year prior to them being challenged by any owner. RCW 64.34.264(2)…

Discrimination Against Children

Associations trying to keep their condominium child free may want to think again. Associations which try to utilize governing documents to discriminate against owners with children could find themselves going up against the Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) and the Department of Justice (DOJ). In one case, an association’s management company, the association,…

Master HOA Rental Restriction does NOT apply to Subassociation Condominium

In 2012, Alan and Erika White purchased a condominium in a subassociation of the Lakeland master community (Lakeland) in Auburn, WA. The master community is a mix of single family homes and condominium subassociations. The Lakeland declaration contains a provision preventing the rental of a “Single-Family Home” within the first year of purchase. The condominium…

Association Records – Whether & How Long to Keep Them

Under Washington law, COAs and HOAs are required to keep various kinds of records. We have visited the issue of what to include within Association records in the past (see our blog post here). However, Associations might want more specific guidance when it comes to how long the various types of records must be kept….

Electing Your Board Without a Quorum

Most Associations are required, both by law and by their governing documents, to hold an annual meeting at which they elect board members. See RCW 64.34.332 (applicable to New Act condos); RCW 64.38.035 (applicable to HOAs). A quorum, or minimum number of members, is required for an election (or any other official association action) at…

Two-Prong Test for the Reasonableness of House Rules

A recent Division II Court of Appeals case has set out a two-prong test for determining whether a house rule is reasonable.  The case, Kawawaki v. Academy Square Condominium Association, concerned a dispute over a newly implemented house rule that dictated that rental status runs with the condominium unit and not with the owner.  The…

Use Restrictions Must be Contained in a Condominium’s Declaration

A recently decided Washington Court of Appeals case, Kawawaki v. Academy Square Condominium Association, has emphasized that use restrictions must be contained in a condominium’s Declaration.  In 2005, the Kawawakis purchased a condominium intending it to be a potential rental investment. However, at the time they purchased the unit they were aware of a use…

What’s in Your Governing Documents?

Washington law contains numerous provisions containing restrictions and requirements on COAs and HOAs. In many cases, however, the law contains a minimum requirement only and defers to the more specific provisions of the governing documents.  For a primer on governing documents and their interplay with the law, please read our Governing Documents post.  The law…

Category Archives: Governing Documents

Court Defers to Association’s Interpretation of its Bylaws

The Washington Court of Appeals recently held that an association’s board of directors was validly constituted and properly passed bylaw amendments, so the board (and the management company as the board’s agent) had the authority to charge and collect fines and fees. Parker Estates Homeowners Ass’n v. Pattison, No. 47402-6-II, 2016 WL 7468226, at *1…

Is Short-Term Leasing a “Commercial Use”?

In Houston v. Wilson Mesa Ranch Homeowners Association, Inc., the Colorado Court of Appeals held that short-term rentals did not violate a covenant prohibiting commercial use of a unit. However, this ruling did not indicate that all restrictions on short-term rentals are unenforceable. Although this case was decided in Colorado, and it is not binding…

Washington State Supreme Court Resurrects Rental Restrictions for Many Condo Associations

On April 28, 2016, the Washington State Supreme Court issued an order in a case called Bilanko v. Barclay Court which, in effect, reverses its decision in Filmore v. Centre Pointe from 2015 – but only for associations that adopted their rental caps more than a year prior to them being challenged by any owner. RCW 64.34.264(2)…

Discrimination Against Children

Associations trying to keep their condominium child free may want to think again. Associations which try to utilize governing documents to discriminate against owners with children could find themselves going up against the Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) and the Department of Justice (DOJ). In one case, an association’s management company, the association,…

Master HOA Rental Restriction does NOT apply to Subassociation Condominium

In 2012, Alan and Erika White purchased a condominium in a subassociation of the Lakeland master community (Lakeland) in Auburn, WA. The master community is a mix of single family homes and condominium subassociations. The Lakeland declaration contains a provision preventing the rental of a “Single-Family Home” within the first year of purchase. The condominium…

Association Records – Whether & How Long to Keep Them

Under Washington law, COAs and HOAs are required to keep various kinds of records. We have visited the issue of what to include within Association records in the past (see our blog post here). However, Associations might want more specific guidance when it comes to how long the various types of records must be kept….

Electing Your Board Without a Quorum

Most Associations are required, both by law and by their governing documents, to hold an annual meeting at which they elect board members. See RCW 64.34.332 (applicable to New Act condos); RCW 64.38.035 (applicable to HOAs). A quorum, or minimum number of members, is required for an election (or any other official association action) at…

Two-Prong Test for the Reasonableness of House Rules

A recent Division II Court of Appeals case has set out a two-prong test for determining whether a house rule is reasonable.  The case, Kawawaki v. Academy Square Condominium Association, concerned a dispute over a newly implemented house rule that dictated that rental status runs with the condominium unit and not with the owner.  The…

Use Restrictions Must be Contained in a Condominium’s Declaration

A recently decided Washington Court of Appeals case, Kawawaki v. Academy Square Condominium Association, has emphasized that use restrictions must be contained in a condominium’s Declaration.  In 2005, the Kawawakis purchased a condominium intending it to be a potential rental investment. However, at the time they purchased the unit they were aware of a use…

What’s in Your Governing Documents?

Washington law contains numerous provisions containing restrictions and requirements on COAs and HOAs. In many cases, however, the law contains a minimum requirement only and defers to the more specific provisions of the governing documents.  For a primer on governing documents and their interplay with the law, please read our Governing Documents post.  The law…