On September 4, 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”) issued a Federal Agency Order entitled Temporary Halt in Residential Evictions to Prevent the Further Spread of COVID-19 (“CDC Order”). As the name suggests, the primary purpose of the CDC Order was to prevent landlords from evicting certain qualified tenants during the COVID-19 pandemic. The CDC Order was originally set to expire on December 31, 2020, but it was extended multiple times as the threat from COVID-19 lingered on.
The current real estate market has introduced a new wave of homeowners into community associations. Unfortunately, however, new faces usually result in familiar problems. One of the most common issues associated with new homeowners is unapproved modifications. One of the underlying functions of any community association is to preserve the neighborhood’s semblance of uniformity.
Four years ago, we published two separate blog articles on funding reserves and preparing for disaster (i.e., related to insurance claims). Although these general issues are always relevant for community associations with common property, they have unfortunately been thrown into the international spotlight within the last week.
Even though COVID-19 is still around, many Georgia community associations are deciding to open their pools on time this swim season. This is consistent with a national CAI poll that revealed only 2% of surveyed members were going to keep their pools closed this year—compared to 44% at the same time last year.
The Federal Fair Housing Act makes it illegal for housing providers, which includes community associations, to discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, familial status, or disability. This is enforced by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (“HUD”). So, if one believes their rights have been violated by their community association (i.e., through the board of directors or property manager), he/she can file a complaint with HUD after the alleged violation.
The Georgia General Assembly Passes House Bill 112 to Extend Georgia COVID-19 Pandemic Business Safety Act
On March 17, 2021, the Georgia General Assembly passed House Bill 112 (“HB 112”), which proposes to extend the Georgia COVID-19 Pandemic Business Safety Act through July 14, 2022. Unless vetoed, HB 112 will become law as soon as it is signed by Governor Kemp, or by default after forty-five days.
A lame duck is a political term for an elected official whose successor has already been elected or will be soon. In the context of a community association, a “lame duck” could be a director whose time on the board is coming to an end. The issue that sometimes arises is that these individuals make last-minute decisions that should probably be left for those next in line. Accordingly, the purpose of this article is to offer some best practices for outgoing directors that, for whatever the reason, will not be seeking reelection to the board.
Georgia is becoming a popular destination to film movies, television shows, commercials, and other visual media content. As a result, boards and property managers are seeing an increase in demand for their communities to be used as filming locations.
As we gladly bid farewell to 2020, the harsh reality is that many of this year’s issues may stick around for part of 2021. Therefore, to ensure your community association remains vigilant into the New Year, here are some of the things we learned from 2020.
On January 5, 2021, all eyes will turn to Georgia voters as they determine which political party will control the U.S. Senate in two separate runoff elections. This means that, in addition to the abundance of holiday decorations, many homeowners will also pepper their yards with political signs to support their candidates. For those living in a Georgia community association, it is important to understand that your First Amendment right to free speech does not trump—no pun intended—the association’s right to impose reasonable restrictions on political signs.