New HOA Laws

Thursday at 5pm, we aired a story about a slew of new HOA laws that came out of this Legislative session. Some took effect in June, some yesterday… and some will start in January. We couldn’t include all 32 of the laws in our 2 minute report; but some of you have called and emailed asking where you can get a list. For your convenience, I am posting all of the new laws here. The summary of each new law is very general. For specifics and exceptions, refer to the House or Senate bill or the Texas Property Code to read the law in its entirety.

Rain Barrel Rules  (Texas Prop. Code 202.007d)  HB3391   Effective 9/1/11

HOAs must permit owners to install and use rain-harvesting devices if they meet certain architectural requirements.

Solar Panels   (Texas Property Code 202.010) HB 362 Effective 6/20/11

HOAs must permit owners to install solar panels with certain permissable limitations.

Storm Shingles   (Texas Property Code 202.011) HB 362   Effective 6/20/11

HOAs must allow owners to install shingles of certain materials made to resist wind and hall, provide heating/ cooling efficiency, or generate solar energy.

Flags   (Texas Property Code 202.011) HB 2779   Effective 6/20/11

HOAs must permit owner to display the US, Texas or military branch flag, with permissible limitations.

Religious Display   (Texas Property Code 202.018)  HB 1278    Effective 6/20/11

HOAs must allow an owner to display religious items on his front door or doorframe, with certain permissible limitations.

Open Board Meetings   (Texas Property Code 209-0051) HB 2761  Effective 1/1/12

Board Meetings (regular and special) must be open to owners, with some exceptions.

Meeting Notice    (Texas Prop. Code 209.0056)  HB 2761    Effective 1/1/12

HOAs must give owners notice of an HOA-wide election or vote.

Recount Procedures  (Texas Prop. Code 209.0057)  HB 2761   Effective 1/1/12

HOAs must conduct a recount of an election vote if requested by an owner.

No Secret Ballots  (Texas Prop. Code 209.0058) HB 2761   Effective 9/1/11

Secret Ballots are prohibited.

Owner Voting Rights   (Texas Prop. Code 209.0059)  HB 2761   Effective 9/1/11

Owners may not be disqualified from voting for any reason.

Director Qualifications  (Texas Prop. Code 209.00591 & .00592)  HB 2761   Effective 9/1/11

Owner director qualifications are void; all owners may run for the Board.

Developer Director Transition   (Texas Prop. Code 209.00591c)  HB  2761  Effective 1/1/12

Establishes time frame when non-declarant owners must be elected to the Board.

Electronic & Absentee Ballots   (Texas Prop Code 209.00593 & .00592) SB 472 & HB 2761  Eff. 9/1/11

Electronic and absentee ballots votes are valid if the ballots meet certain requirements.

Director Appointment  (Texas Prop. Code 209.00593) HB 2761  Effective 1/1/12

Directors may not be appointed to positions whose terms have expired.

Election Vote Tabulators   (Texas Prop. Code 209.00594)  SB 472 & HB 2761  Effective  9/1/11

Only election vote tabulators allowed access to ballots.

Annual Meetings & Elections   (Texas Prop. Code 209.014) HB 2761   Effective 1/1/12

HOAs must hold annual meetings or owners may themselves call an election meeting.

Recording Requirement  (Texas Prop. Code 202.006) HB 1821  Effective 1/1/12

Unrecorded HOA dedicatory instruments are of “no effect.”

Website Posting  (Texas Prop. Code 207.006) HB 1821

An HOAs dedicatory instruments must be posted on an HOA “publicly accessible” HOA website that must include copies of all governing documents of the HOA (i.e., declaration, bylaws, rules, articles and all amendments).

Declaration Amendment  (Texas Prop. Code  209.0041  (SB 472)  Effective 9/1/11

Declarations may be amended by 67% of the Owners (or less stated in the declaration).

Open Records  (Texas Prop. Code 209.005)  HB 2761   Effective 1/1/12

HOAs must adopt and file an open records policy; open records procedures established.

Records Retention Policy  (Texas Prop. Code 209.005m)  HB 2761  Effective 1/1/12

HOAs must adopt a records retention policy; certain statutory time frames established.

Military Notice  (Texas Prop. Code 209.006b)  HB 1127   Effective 1/1/12

Mandatory inclusion of military notice established.

Payment Plan Guidelines  (Texas Prop. Code 209.0062)   HB 1228  & HB 1821  Effective 1/1/12

Payment plans required and guidelines are mandated.

Application of Payments   (Texas Prop. Code 209.0063) HB 1228   Effective 1/1/12

Mandatory application of payments schedule.  States HOA must apply owners’ payments in the following order: delinquent assessments, current assessments, attorney fees or third party collection costs, other attorney fees, fines, other amounts.

Third Party Collections   (Texas Prop. Code 209.0064)   HB 1228   Effective 1/1/12

Required notice to owner prior to turning delinquent accounts over to a third party collection agent and certain contingency fee arrangements made unenforceable against an owner.

Copy Charge Foreclosure  (Texas Prop. Code 209.009)  HB 2761    Effective 1/1/12

No HOA foreclosure for copy charges related to books and records.

Junior Lienholder Notice  (Texas Prop. Code 209.0091)   HB 1228   Effective  1/1/12

Prior notice of foreclosure must be sent to junior lienholders.

Judicial Foreclosure  (Texas Prop. Code 209.0092) HB 1228    Effective 1/1/12

Non-judicial HOA foreclosures prohibited.

Foreclosure Amendment  (Texas Prop. Code 209.0093)  HB 1228   Effective 1/1/12

Foreclosure provisions can be added or removed by owners from declaration.

Lien Notices  (Texas Prop. Code 209.0094)  HB 1228   Effective 1/1/12

Confirms prior law that HOA lien notices and similar instruments affect title to property.

Transfer Fees  (Texas Prop. Code Chap. 5, subchap. G)   HB 8    Effective 6/17/11

Certain types of transfer fees are prohibited with  general exceptions for most HOA transfer fees.

Resale Certificates  (Texas Prop. Code 207.003)  HB 1821   Effective 1/1/12

New requirements and time frames for resale certificates are established.

Two other websites you might be interested in:

www.HOAdata.org

www.TexasHOAReform.org

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8 Responses

  1. New to know more. Where do I go to research for more information? Is there a lawyer that is free to help home owner’s?
    Thank you,
    stacie

  2. Declaration Amendment (Texas Prop. Code 209.0041 (SB 472) Effective 9/1/11

    Does the 67% requirement have to be in writing? Also, should a HOA have the wording in their bylaws that states 67% is required?

    How would people know if it is not shown in each HOA’s bylaws?

  3. I have used your listing on New HOA Laws and added the accompanying statutes. I maintain a website for an HOA and have posted the .pdf file there.

    http://www.villagesofcypresslakes.info/pdf/new_tx_hoa_statutes.pdf

    You may use this file if you wish.

  4. Thank you for this great information. I need to ask you a question regarding the right to vote. I know that the new law allows every owner a chance to vote. During an election the secratary should check the member’s list in order to make sure that the person is trying to vote is actually a member. We had an election and the president of our board collected and presented a proxy signed by a person who was not on the member’s list. This person is not listed any where as the owner – her parents are the owners. Should this proxy be considered valid?

  5. our poa just held an election in which the current board members blatantly rigged the election so they would ALL be re elected at once..they did it by proxy votes not in compliance with the new laws and by putting a motion on the floor to either re elect them or not..did not allow any nominations by owners..used a hand count to count votes..board member counted votes..no paper ballots signed by owners..allowed those in favor of them to double vote..no ballot box and the owners caught it all on tape..owners are filing an emergency motion with district judge Monday so this will be a good test of the new laws..owners know this board has something to hide

  6. This will be very helpful. I’ve been paying a law firm legal fees to keep from putting my house in foreclosure. I had them paid off and then they slammed me with another 1600.00 in legal fees. On February 6 they sent me a letter in regard to mandatory notice pursuant to texas property code. Like I understand this!!! This is what got me in trouble the first time. I requested a monthly payment plan to pay my maintenance fees (along with the first payment). They never responded nor did they take my payment. I ASSUMED they’d send me a letter and reminder to pay. I never got anything and I forgot about it. A year later they threatened to foreclose. HOW CAN I REQUEST A PAYMENT SCHEDULE???

  7. are there new laws determining when declarants of covenants must release power over to HOA?

  8. Thank you so much for posting this list. I am having problems with my HOA/Developer not following the established guidelines and laws. What is the best avenue to take corrective action and hold them accountable?

    Thanks so much!

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