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Legalease
Legalease, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 16288
Experience:  13 years experience in RE Law, including LL/Tenant, contractor disputes, comm'l prop. issues
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I am the President of a no-for-profit homeowners'

Customer Question

I am the President of a no-for-profit homeowners' association on a lake in Missouri. One of the restrictions for the association is:
"Mobile Homes, Pre-manufactured Homes and Recreational Vehicles (RV).
There shall be no house trailers, mobile homes or double wides parked on any lot in the subdivision, whether or not on foundations. There shall be no pre-manufactured houses on any lot in the subdivision without the approval of 100 % of the outstanding votes of the Association. Recreational vehicles, motor homes, travel trailers and campers shall be permitted for recreational use, but must be travel ready and legally licensed for public road use. Permanent storage of RV units is not the intent and is prohibited. The use of any RV as a permanent residence is also prohibited."
Someone has just purchased a lot. Their plan is to locate a boat dock attached to the property (no problem), but not build a house for at least a couple years. Instead, they have a camper which they plan to use whenever they or friends are at the lake. When the restriction was added (1998) the intent was that residents not use campers in place of houses. The person who sold the lot argues that the restriction relative to campers is vague and not enforceable. I disagree and believe that they would be using the camper as their 'permanent residence' while at the lake.
What do you think?
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Legalease replied 6 months ago.

Hello there --

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I do not agree with the person who sold the lot. I think that the restriction is pretty clear that the HOA intent is to keep out any non permanent housing alternatives to be placed on any of the lots. At most, I think that this person with the camper might be able to get away with spending one week a summer on the lot in a camper -- and that is skirting the rules closely enough (a week or two would probably not be considered "permanent" by a court if your HOA decided to bring the matter to court). However, it sounds to me that a boat dock and a camping lot is going to end up with that lot filled with at least one camper and maybe more from Memorial Day to Labor Day every year and that is not the intent of the restrictions in the HOA rules. Your HOA regulation was intended to keep the place from becoming a vacation area and permanent campground and my reading of the rules gives your HOA board to take a vote and determine whether or not you are going to issue a warning or start issuing fines against the new owner until the new owner straightens out whether he will buy it for a permanent house or sell it to someone else. My suggestion is that you take a vote and AMEND the above regulation to restrict mobile campers on any one lot to one or two weeks of a year -- that would be your most reasonable approach because then you can insure that you will not end up with endless campers and vacationers in the lot for three months of every year.

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Please let me know if you have any further questions. If not, can you please press a positive rating above so I will be given credit for my time assisting you today. I do not receive any credit unless you press the middle star or the fourth or the fifth star to the right of the middle star above. THANK YOU VERY MUCH !!!

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MARY

Expert:  Legalease replied 6 months ago.

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Hello again --

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Do you have any further questions for me? If not, can you please press a positive rating above these chat boxes so I will be paid for my time? I am paid nothing unless you press the middle star or the fourth or fifth star to the right of the middle star above in the ratings section. So, I really do appreciate that you want to make sure I am paid and given credit for my time for assisting you with this question. Your question will not close and you can come back in and ask follow up questions for several weeks after the question was asked. THANK YOU VERY MUCH
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MARY

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