January 3, 2013
As discussed in the podcast, the question addressed was: “While we are aware of the Freedom to Display the American Flag Act of 2005, there is one shareholder who is displaying an oversized American flag and it hangs over his small lower floor balcony. Is the board of directors permitted to limit the size of American flags that are displayed by shareholders?”
You can listen to the full Habitat podcast here.
For more information on this or any other issue concerning your community association, please contact one of our Community Associations attorneys. For breaking news or updates on new blog posts, follow us on Twitter at: @njcondolaw.
April 13, 2012
CAI-National is advising that the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) is likely to take action in the coming months regarding several proposed revisions to the Condominium Project Approval and Processing Guidelines, which were released last June. These revisions are expected to address, among other issues, transfer fees and the troublesome certification statements.
With respect to transfer fees, CAI anticipates the FHA’s new guidelines will be more in line with the recent final rule issued by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) that allows condominiums, homeowners associations and cooperatives that collect private transfer fees with certain limitations. CAI advises that the FHA has indicated the new policy will likely permit transfer fees used for “administrative” purposes, but will continue to disallow fees that are based on a percentage of a property’s sale price.
With respect to the FHA’s required project approval certifications, CAI anticipates the FHA will make modest adjustments to this certification to clarify certain duties imposed by signing; however, CAI does not expect that the FHA will modify the existing certification to protect signors from making legal determinations or attestations that the condominium is in compliance with all applicable local, state, and federal laws and regulations.
You can read more information on these issues from CAI here.
March 15, 2012
In a major victory for CAI-National and its Government and Public Affairs Department, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) has issued a final rule that allows condominiums, homeowners associations and cooperatives that collect private transfer fees (also known as working capital or capital contribution fees) to qualify for mortgages insured by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Federal Home Loan banks.
As detailed in previous posts, the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) Condominium Project Approval and Processing Guidelines issued in June 2011 originally required the rejection of applications submitted by condominium associations that charged a private transfer fees, including working capital or capital contribution fees. FHFA’s new ruling should resolve this over restrictive pronouncement and allow condominium associations that collect such fees access to FHA-insured mortgages.
Our congratulations and thanks are due to CAI-National, its Government and Public Affairs Department and the Federal Legislative Action Committee who have fought long and hard and continue to be at the forefront in their opposition to this and many of the other newly imposed FHA restrictions.
February 29, 2012
Community associations can learn something from Milwaulkee Brewer outfielder and National League MVP Ryan Braun’s successful appeal of his 50 game suspension. Braun (pictured below) was suspended after a positive drug test administered pursuant to the collective bargaining agreement between Major League Baseball (“MLB”) and its Players’ Union. The test was administered by a health care professional serving as an independent contractor to MLB. The collective bargaining agreement contains very specific procedural requirements dealing with the handling of samples collected for drug testing. One of those procedures involved transporting the sample promptly to Federal Express, which would ship the sample to the testing lab. Braun’s sample was allegedly not handled strictly in accordance with the procedure set forth in the collective bargaining agreement, and, on that basis, a panel of arbitrators overturned the suspension.
Community associations also have specific procedural requirements concerning issues such as the imposition of fines and/or late fees, the adoption and enforcement of rules and regulations, the approval of architectural modification applications and more. The courts have generally held associations to those procedures, requiring strict compliance. Therefore, board members should take note of the Braun matter and, in conducting the affairs of the association, use caution to ensure that both the substantive and procedural requirements of the governing documents and the law are being observed and followed.