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KimberlyLaw, Attorney and Real Estate Broker
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 4195
Experience:  13 years of experience in real estate law: Foreclosures, Landlord-Tenant, Condo/Coop, Property Law, Deeds, Purchases/Sales, Estates.
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We have a land owners association with many landowners. When

Customer Question

We have a land owners association with many landowners. When we purchased the land most of the property owners purchased 65 acres. Five of these acres were on an area that didn't flood so that you could build a hunting cabin or home or whatever. The other 60 acres was on an area that we called the bottoms. It was understood when we purchased this land the 60 acres on the bottoms would be in a flood area during rainy conditions. It was also understood that we could get to it or try to get to it under any circumstances we thought were doable. There is a 5 mile rock road that gives us access to our property on the bottoms. When we purchased the land there was no association to take care of the common roads. In order to keep the roads in a somewhat drive able condition we created a board to maintain them. Now the board wants to put up a gate to prevent us from getting to our property when they feel the roads are to wet. This will prevent many landowners from using their property. It will also at some point end up having someone locked on the wrong side of the fence unable to get out. Can they legally prevent us from using or accessing our land by installing a gate? It may also be worth mentioning that most of the landowners have their land financed through the Texas Veterans Land Board. The association took this vote among themselves instead of putting it to vote to all the effected landowners.
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  KimberlyLaw replied 6 months ago.
Hello, I am happy to assist you today. What an interesting situation. Well, the first thing you need to do is read the by laws and rules governing your association to see how it's set up. What are the voting rules, etc. Either way, regardless how it's set up, if the board takes a vote outside the rules, that is certainly illegal and actionable. The issues of blocking use of the property is a complicated one. I bet if you took the matter before different judges you would get different decisions on this, assuming that the by laws of the association allow for this. The bot***** *****ne is that the association, in my opinion, should not have the control and ability to block those roads, as I can see you agree with. That should never have happened and I am curious how the board claims that they have the authority to do that. Again, a review of the by laws and rules would first be in order. But absent the permission in those documents, I would lean towards the position that it is not ok for them to block you from accessing your property, and also that you have the right to remove any gate or anything else blocking the road to your property. This is something you could take to court, but it could get sticky. I would try to get as many owners as possible on board and if they actually do this possibly remove the gate. Let me know if you have any questions.Kim

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