By now, most community associations have met the minimum requirements when it comes to adopting the responsible governance policies required under the Colorado Common Interest Ownership Act (CCIOA). You have duly adopted all 9 of the required policies, including a collection policy, an enforcement policy and a conflict of interest policy to name a few. However, in our experience representing community associations across the state, we have found that there are more than a handful of other policies that, although not required, prove very helpful to associations. The following is a list of such policies. They are not required under Colorado law, but perhaps should be:
Leasing Policy – Where the association’s governing documents allow the leasing of units to be further regulated by the association pursuant to duly adopted rules and regulations, a leasing policy can be helpful to address such things as providing the association with a copy of the lease, gathering tenant information, establishing minimum lease terms, and addressing owner responsibility for tenant actions.
Architectural Review Policy - Standards and procedures to be used in reviewing owner
architectural requests, including checklists and forms to be used by the association when
reviewing requests that list the required criteria for approval.
Solar Panel Policy – Green is gaining steam! Be on the proactive side of the movement by establishing acceptable aesthetic and procedural requirements for the installation of solar panels or other energy saving measures and devices.
Action Without Meeting Policy – Does your Board wish to take advantage of the ability under Colorado law to take action without conducting a board meeting? Or do your association’s bylaws already provide a procedure for taking board action without a meeting. Either way, it can be much more convenient and an easier to follow recipe for such board action if it is set forth in a stand-alone policy. Such policy can even have a template for board notice attached.
Insurance Claims and Deductible Policy – How are potential insurance claims reported, investigated, and filed? And by whom? Can the deductible paid by the association be allocated amongst those responsible, or those benefiting from the filing of the claim? Associations will find it helpful to address these matters and clarify the language in your association’s declaration regarding these matters and certain provisions in CCIOA.
Document Retention Policy – The sheer volume of documents and paperwork that pile up over years of managing the day-to-day operations of a community association can be overwhelming. It would be helpful to have a policy that clearly spells out which documents must be saved permanently, which can be temporarily stored, and which can be purged after a certain number of years.
Common Area Use Policy – How does your association handle requests for the use of recreational facilities, clubhouses or common area parks for parties, receptions, and other events? A policy regarding these types of uses can be useful to put parties on notice as to any requirements for applying for such use, and the rules and responsibilities to which they will be held. A form of license, waiver and/or indemnity agreement can accompany the policy as well.
Parking Policy – Is there any more of an administrative nightmare than trying to enforce parking restrictions in your community? We have found it helpful in both enforcement and encouraging voluntary compliance to have a clear written parking policy in place. The policy should include provisions such as a clear definition of what a commercial vehicle is in your community, and the exceptions allowed for emergency vehicle parking which are required under CCIOA.
Pets Policy – As with all of the recommended policies above, one of the main goals in adopting policies is to gain clarity and to make sure everyone knows what the expectations of the association and your neighbors are with regard to the subject matter. Whether you love pets, or prefer to live without them, your feelings on the matter probably tend to be strong. Your association’s declaration may not provide adequate clarity and direction with regard to pet limitations and so a well-constructed policy may be desperately needed.
The foregoing are some of the additional policies that we highly recommend regardless of the fact that they are not necessarily required under Colorado law. If you wish to look into any of the policies further, please contact your knowledgeable attorney at HindmanSanchez P.C. for more information and a quote.