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WiseOwl58, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 3686
Experience:  Experienced real estate lawyer and real estate broker.
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I have installed solar panels to the roof of my condominium.

Customer Question

I have installed solar panels to the roof of my condominium. It is time for routine roof maintenance where the solar panels are placed. The Homeowners Association (HOA) claims that they are no longer responsible for roof maintenance due to the presence of the solar panels.
NO agreement was made between myself and the HOA regarding roof maintenance before or after the installation of the panels. The HOA DID approve the panels to be installed after request was made of them to do so, although they did so passively, that is that the HOA did not disapprove of the installation of the panels within 60 days after the request for approval was made per the Solar Rights Act - California Civil Code §714.
What are my rights?
What are the HOA rights and responsibilities?
Is there California statute or case law that covers this issue?
Is the HOA responsible for the roof maintenance?
If the HOA has the right to not do the maintenance, should the HOA reimburse me for 17 years of that portion of HOA dues that cover roof maintenance that I have paid over those years?
If the HOA has the right not to do the maintenance, should they reduce may monthly HOA dues that cover roof maintenance?
It is clear under California’s Government Code (65850.5) where it states that local agencies not adopt ordinances that create unreasonable barriers to the installation of solar energy systems,
California promotes the use of solar energy systems. Accordingly, associations cannot (i) prohibit solar energy systems, (ii) IMPOSE RESTRICTIONS THAT SIGNIFICANTLY INCREASE THEIR COST, or (iii) impose restrictions that significantly decrease their efficiency. (Cal Civ. Code §714.)
Is refusing roof maintenance an unreasonable barrier making the installation or ownership of solar panels less accessible?
There is nothing in the CC&R’s regarding this issue of solar panels.
Your help would be greatly appreciated
Ken Schwartz
(619) 421- 3686
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  WiseOwl58 replied 2 years ago.
Yes, the HOA is still responsible for roof maintenance. Your installation of the solar panels does not reduce their maintenance requirements in any way. Please rate the answer 4 or 5 and close out the question. Good luck to you. I wish you all the best.