Q. What is an Assessment?
HOA assessments (dues) are collected quarterly, which homeowners are responsible for paying. These dues are paid to the association and contribute to daily operational expenses and reserve funds for future repairs and improvements.
Homeowner associations can compel homeowners to pay a share of common expenses, usually, per-unit or based on square footage. These expenses generally arise from common property, which varies dramatically depending on the type of association. Some associations are, quite literally, towns, complete with private roads, services, utilities, amenities, community buildings, pools, and even schools. Many condominium associations consider the roofs and exteriors of the structures as the responsibility of the association. Other associations have no common property but may charge for services or other matters.
Q. Are 'Dues' Different than 'Assessments'?
Yes, a predetermined set of fees usually referred to as 'Dues' are collected by HOAs, Community Associations, or divisions of property management for the upkeep of said organizations or neighborhoods in general. These fees are billed at intervals, sometimes by month, quarter, or annually.
Q. How are "dues" assessed?
A Board of Directors and Management Company are responsible for setting the annual fee amount. When determining the exact payment required, a board will consider all operating, maintenance, and savings expenses, including things like utilities, vendors, insurance, and more. Assessment amounts for your HOA will also be determined based on their needed reserve fund amounts. Unlike daily expenses, these funds help pay for future improvements and repairs for pools, parks, and clubhouses, et.
Q. What do assessments cover?
Typically, your dues will be directly tied to the size, cost, and complexity of your association's shared amenities, overall HOA common grounds, and complexity of services. For a Master Planned Community like Whisper Falls, the assessment must cover things like Management; Audit & Tax Preparation; Legal-Collection Expenses; Licenses & Permits; Staff Payroll; Office Supplies; Telephone/Internet; Copies, Printing, Postage; Web Hosting; Social Events; Holiday Decorations; Landscaping; Cleaning & Janitorial; Pest Control; Pool Service; Alarm Monitoring; Access Systems; Fountain & Pond Maintenance; General Maintenance & Repairs; Signage; General Supplies- Gym, Pool, Amenity Center; Electricity; Water; Taxes; Insurance, to name a few.
ASSOCIATION LEGAL DOCUMENTATION
Q. What are CC&Rs?
The term CC&R refers to 'Covenants, Conditions & Restrictions.' A real covenant is a legal obligation imposed in a deed by the seller of a home and or property upon the buyer of the real estate to do or not to do something. Such restrictions frequently 'run with the land' and are enforceable on future buyers of the property. Examples might be to maintain a property in a reasonable state of repair, to preserve a sight-line for a neighboring property, not to run a business from a residence, or not to build on certain parts of the property. Many covenants are very simple and are meant only to protect a neighborhood from homeowners destroying trees or historic things or otherwise directly harming property values. Some can be more specific and strict, outlining everything a homeowner can do to the exterior of their home, including the number of non-familial tenants one may have, acceptable colors to re-paint the home, exactly when holiday decorations are allowed up, automobile placement or repair on the property, satellite placement, etc.
Q. What are Governing Documents?
The declaration, bylaws, operating rules, articles of incorporation or any other documents which govern the normal operating procedures of an association.
Q. What is a 'Notice of Noncompliance?'
Similar in essence to a lien, the Notice of Noncompliance is a document sometimes authorized under the CC&Rs and may be recorded in the county property records. Its' essential purpose is to notify prospective buyers that the property is in violation of the documents.
Q. What is a Lien?
A monetary claim levied against a property for an unpaid mortgage, taxes, contractor work, or other charges. A lien is attached to the property, not the owner, but legally must be recorded in the property records of the county of residence. If a Lien is in place, the property owner has very limited ability to do anything involving the property until the Lien is satisfied or removed.
Q. What is an 'Easement?'
An interest or a right in real property which grants the ability to a landowner to use the land of another for a special purpose or endeavor. An association may, for example, have an easement for slope maintenance or other repair purposes. A public utility may also have an easement for maintenance or repair work to be executed at a future date.
Q. What is the 'Declaration?'
The Declaration is sometimes referred to as the 'master deed,' 'documents,' or 'declaration of covenants, conditions, and restrictions' [CC&Rs]. It describes an owner's responsibilities to the association which can include payment of dues and assessments as well as the association’s various duties to the owners. It is commonly viewed as somewhat of a 'constitution' of the association. The person or group of persons who either signs the original declaration governing the development and association or acquires the original developer's rights is referred to as the 'Declarant.'
Q. What is a Community Association?
A community association is a nongovernmental association of participating members of a community, such as a neighborhood, village, condominium, cooperative, or group of homeowners or property owners in a delineated geographic area. Participation may be voluntary, require a specific residency, or require participation in an intentional community. Community associations may serve as social clubs, community promotional groups, service organizations, or quasi-governmental groups.
Q. What is an Association Management Company and what do they do?
A property management entity contracted by a Board of Directors or community to provide a variety of services including but not limited to collecting assessments, sub-contractor endeavors, financial advisement and statement/reports preparation and analysis, general maintenance and problem resolution, and advisement on legal and other property related matters. Some of these companies manage hundreds of properties simultaneously, while others focus on individual properties.
Q. What is a Homeowners Association (HOA)?
A Homeowners' Association (HOA) is a legal entity created by a real estate developer for the purpose of developing, managing and selling a community of homes. It is given the authority to enforce the covenants, conditions & restrictions (CC&Rs) and to manage the common amenities of the development. It allows a developer to end their responsibility for the community, typically by transferring ownership of the association to the homeowners after selling. Generally accepted as a voluntary association of homeowners gathered together to protect their property values and to improve the neighborhood, a large percentage of U.S neighborhoods where free-standing homes exist have an HOA. Most homeowners' associations are nonprofit organizations and are subject to state statutes that govern non-profit corporations and homeowners' associations.
Q. What is Association Management?
Association management is a distinct field of management because of the unique environment of associations. Associations are unique in that the 'owners' are dues-paying members. Members also govern their association through an elected board or other governing bodies, along with association committees, commissions, task forces, councils, and other units. Typically, the board selects, retains and evaluates a chief executive officer or an executive director who is responsible for the day-to-day management of the association and paid staff. Managers within the association environment are responsible for many of the same tasks that are found in other organizational contexts. These include human resource management, financial management, meeting management, IT management, and project management. Other aspects of management are unique for association managers. These include membership recruitment and retention; tax-exempt accounting and financial management; development of non-dues revenue and fundraising. Association managers must also be familiar with laws and regulations that pertain only to associations. To attain the knowledge needed to effectively operate in association management, its practitioners may choose to pursue the Certified Association Executive designation.
Q. What is the difference between a Homeowners Association and a Neighborhood Association?
The term neighborhood association is sometimes incorrectly used instead of a homeowners association (HOA). Some key differences include:
1. HOA membership is mandatory generally through rules tied to the ownership of property like deed restrictions. Neighborhood association membership is voluntary or informal.
2. HOAs often own and maintain common property, such as recreational facilities, parks, and roads, whereas neighborhood associations are focused on general advocacy and community events. The rules for the formation of a neighborhood association in the United States are sometimes regulated at the city or state level. Neighborhood associations are more likely to be formed in older, established neighborhoods, whereas HOAs are generally established at the time a residential neighborhood is built and sold. In some cases, neighborhood associations exist simultaneously with HOAs, and each may not encompass identical boundaries.
Q. What does Whisper Falls HOA do?
Financial Management, including Assessments, Budget, Billing, Banking, and Reporting
Review of Modification/Improvement Requests
Enforcement of Rules and Regulations
Vendor & Contract Management
File and Resolve Homeowner Inquiries
Assist the Board in the resolution of residents’ concerns
Advise the Board on Policy and Commons Practices
Association Operations & Maintenance of HOA Common Areas
Community Events & Programs
Resident Communications (email, social media, mail)
Sponsorships, and marketing
New resident onboarding
Amenity key card access
Amenity Center Rentals
Q. What is a Board of Directors?
In relation to an HOA, Community or other formal organization, a director is an officer charged with the conduct and management of its affairs. The directors collectively are referred to as a board of directors and are generally elected or appointed. Sometimes the board will appoint one of its members to be the chair, making this person the President of the Board of Directors or Chairman.
Q. When will we be allowed to join the Board of Directors?
The opportunity to allow a resident to the board with voting power will come when the community is near completion.
Q. Quiet Hours?
We follow Bexar County guidelines for noise level. On residential zoned property the limit is 63 decibels. Subtract 7 decibels at nighttime, 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. Sun though Thursday and 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. Friday and Saturday. For business zoned property the upper limit is 70 decibels except at nighttime subtract 7 decibels.
Q. How do I file a noise complaint in Bexar County?
To make a noise complaint after this time frame, please contact Bexar County Non Emergency at (210) 335-6000.
Q. Who cleans the streets?
During construction, the street is cleaned by the developer DR Horton.
The association has the other streets cleaned twice a year. Lend a helping hand and pick up trash, back sure your bins are closed on trash day to avoid it from being blown away. We appreciate all of the help we can get in making Whisper Falls a beautiful place to live.
Q. Who maintains the streets and street lights?
Q. Who do I call about a pothole repair?
The Public Works Division of the Infrastructure Services Department is responsible for maintenance of all county-maintained streets and roads. This includes streets and roads that are:
Outside the incorporated limits of any cities or towns in Bexar County
Not maintained by the State of Texas (Federal and State highways, Farm to Market roads, and Interstate highways)
Not privately owned (in gated communities or other roads not accepted for maintenance by Bexar County)
Call 210-335-6700 with a specific location and a work order will be generated.
Q. Who is the developer of Whisper Falls? What are they in charge of?
Land Development D. R. Horton
Construction of streets
Development of new sections of Whisper Falls
Construction of amenities
Warranty/concerns regarding your home after move-in
Communications about home construction process/status updates
Q. Will the pool be open year around?
The pool will not be open year around.
Currently the schedule will be as follows:
Open: Spring Break Week (Medina Valley Spring Break)
Open: May Weekends
Open: Memorial Day-Labor Day
Open: September & October Weekends
Closed: Last Saturday of October - first Friday of Medina Valley Spring Break.
Q. Pool Rules read "no water wings". Does this mean my child is not able to wear pool floaties?
Under advice and direction from legal counsel this rule is included to the Pool Rules. This rule has become a part of many HOA pool rules over the last 3-5 years across the country. This rule has been added due to direct correlation to deaths by arm floaties otherwise known as “pool wings”.
Q. On the forms we’re signing for the pool, why do we have to list every family member in the house?
The forms you fill out and sign for the pool are our way of keeping track of who has access to the facility.
Q. Who do I call and inform I am bringing my trailer for prep or unloading?
We know that you will need to take some time to prep your trailers and unload and clean them before returning them to storage. The questions you may have about bringing your tailer to the community can be answered here.
Q. How long do I have to prep/unload?
Trailers cannot be stored on the property longer than 5 days. Before bringing your trailer to the community call or email Stephanie to inform her that you will have it on-site.
Q. How do I avoid a violation for my trailer?
Communicate that you need to park a trailer BEFORE it is placed on your property. Community drives and inspections are done at the minimum twice a week.
Q. My neighbor has a trailer who do I call?
While we appreciate your interest in keeping the community looking great, we likely have spotted the trailer or heard from your neighbor. If the trailer has exceeded it's 5 day max please reach out.
Q. Where can I park my trailer?
Preferably in your driveway where it does not impede passage on the sidewalk.
Q. Who to consider/Talking to your neighbors:
Be courteous if you need to park in the street. Be sure that you are not blocking anyone’s driveway or prohibiting anyone from safely using the street.
Section 6.11 Vehicles and Parking. The following shall not be kept, parked, stored, or maintained on any part of any Lot, except within an enclosed structure (e.g., a garage) or in another area that is not visible from any other Lot or any part of the Common Area: (1) commercial vehicles bearing commercial insignia or names; (2) recreational vehicles; (3) wrecked, junked or inoperable vehicles; (4) boats; (5) trailers; (6) tents; (7)
equipment; (8) machinery; (9) mobile homes; (10) four wheelers; and (11) mules.
A vehicle is deemed to be "stored" on any part of a Lot if it is parked on the Lot for more than five (5) consecutive days.
Nonetheless, commercial vehicles bearing commercial insignia or names may be parked within view of another Lot or any part of the Common Area so long as said vehicles are smaller than one (1) ton and either: (1) a resident's primary means of transportation; or (2) parked temporarily for the purpose of serving a Lot. Furthermore, passenger vehicles may be parked in the driveway of a Lot so long as said vehicles are operable, have up-to-date vehicle registration and inspection stickers, and are used daily by a resident of the Lot. However, all vehicles are prohibited from being parked on any part of a sidewalk or yard, and no more than three (3) vehicles shall be parked in a driveway at one time. Furthermore, no vehicle shall be routinely parked in the streets.
Here is friendly reminder on what your HOA team needs from you:
RV/Boats/Trailers- As summer travels begins we understand you may need to take some time to prep your recreational vehicle and unload and clean them before you hit the road or return to storage. Please contact Stephanie Sanchez at email@example.com and let her know you are needing to park your recreational vehicle temporarily.
Avoid a violation for your recreational vehicle by communicating that you will need the time to load and unload.
Inform your neighbors. Be mindful of passing vehicles if you park in the street. Do not block your neighbors driveway. Try your best to fit it in your driveway.
Your Community Standards Coordinator, Stephanie Sanchez! You can call here at 210-908-9168 or send over an email to firstname.lastname@example.org