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Old 12-29-2021, 04:55 PM
 
Location: Paradise CA, that place on fire
2,022 posts, read 1,736,685 times
Reputation: 5906

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We spent 30 years in a lovely townhouse complex in Fullerton, Orange County, S. California. Our association was strict and we have been reprimanded for raising the garage door 1.5 inches to bleed the hot air in September, among other things.

Up here in Paradise we don't have any HOAs, but we are an older, conservative community, so that is not necessary.

Then sometimes I drove to other parts of Butte County, and watch the junk cars in the yard, the pit bulls running unsupervised, the trash spilling to the street, and I think they could use some sort of association.

Associations are like the police. They are your best friends during a home invasion, or your enemy when you do 110 on the freeway - not that I'd do anything like that in my mature age of 75.
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Old 12-29-2021, 09:48 PM
 
Location: Bella Vista, AR
425 posts, read 505,663 times
Reputation: 778
Quote:
Originally Posted by PBC-1966 View Post
I'm a newcomer to Bella Vista, as my wife and I moved here toward the beginning of 2020. At first I was very wary, having read all manner of horror stories about HOA's and their associated committees, but my wife was persuasive enough that I obtained a copy of the protective covenants and read them very carefully from beginning to end. I felt that there was nothing in the restrictions which was too outrageous or that I couldn't live with (unlike some restrictive covenants I found in other developments). So Bella Vista it was to be, and I'm certainly happy with living here and don't think I would be at all happy in Bentonville, Centerton etc. which are far too busy and noisy for me.

One thing we needed was a good fence for the four-legged members of our family, and we made sure that we would be able to erect what we wanted prior to purchase, so we were aware of the "no white fences" rule as it applies to new construction according to the ACC's current policy. That's fair enough (although even so it didn't go entirely smoothly, but that's another story).

No doubt like many Bella Vista residents, I found out about the supposed new rule relating to the removal or repainting of existing white fences only by way of the small ad in the regular newsletter. Having studied the restrictive covenants so carefully before we purchased, that ad set alarm bells ringing for me immediately, so I found the ACC's notice about the change of policy on the website and went right back through all the covenants to confirm what my memory was already telling me - That the ACC simply does not have the power to demand that something previously approved be removed.

The covenants grant power to the ACC to approve new construction, alterations or additions to existiing buildings, and so on. Nowhere do they give the ACC the authority to, effectively, "unapprove" something which has previously been approved and require it to be removed or changed. I'm no lawyer, but I can read the relatively plain English of the covenants, so it seems to me that the ACC is trying to exercise a power that it simply does not have.

Reading the ACC's "Chapter 5 Design Standards" policy document has also revealed a few other cases in which it seems that the ACC within the last few years has passed resolutions which it does not have the legal power to enforce. There is a section regarding the parking of RV's, boats, golf carts, travel trailers, and similar vehicles, for example, indicating that from a certain date they required a protective screening to be erected so as to render the vehicle invisible from the road, but with larger vehicles which could not be so screened grandfathered if owned prior to the effective date. But then from January 1, 2021 they are demanding that such vehicles be completely removed from the property if such screening is not possible. There is also a clause which says they will "allow" such vehicles to be parked on a property for up to 7 days for loading/unloading etc., and another which says the vehicle must be parked on a hard surface, with detailed specifications of such, no less. There is absolutely nothing in the restrictive covenants which gives the ACC any power whatsoever to control what type of vehicle a resident may park on his own property, in what manner or for how long, nor is there anything which grants the ACC power to require protective screening of a vehicle. My wife and I arrived here by RV and were planning on keeping our relatively modest 28 ft. unit parked on the concrete drive right up at the side of the house. Having seen restrictions on RV's in so many other HOA/POA communities that was also something I'd checked for very carefully in the restrictive covenants. As it turned out we did not keep the RV, but one of our neighbors informed us recently of receiving a letter from the ACC ordering them to screen or remove such a vehicle, so it seems the ACC is going out to try and enforce this policy as well. There are other "rules" in that document which also do not appear to be supported by the restrictive covenants, but I believe I have made my point.

As a place, I love Bella Vista. We have peace and quiet, beautiful surroundings, and lovely neighbors. I am a little concerned at what appears to be vast overreach by the ACC, and believe that residents need to challenge the ACC any time it tries to enforce something which is not within its powers. Let them get away with ordering you to remove a fence which has previously been erected with the approval of that same ACC, and where could it end? Ultimately, if the ACC claims it has the power to demand something be changed simply because it has changed its policy on new construction, it could come along a few years after one has built a new home and demand that the windows all be changed, or that the roof be replaced, or even that the home be demolished entirely and rebuilt to meet its new, changed policies. Clearly that would be ridiculous.
I hear ya brother. The ACC is antiquated, self servicing and continues to try and justify their existence. As you are aware, the POA and ACC are two separate governing bodies. The ACC is controlled by Cooper Communities (their board of directors appoint BVACC leadership). Cooper Communities still owns several tracks of land in BV and they are back in the business of developing new buildable lots (having recently rezoned several tracks of land to residential, via Bella Vista City Planning Commission). Cooper continues to sell lots and keeps the ACC propped up to enforce their rules (whatever they decide).

Fun fact: Wanna replace a deck board (one single deck board) on your deck? You will need a permit from the ACC. (Read the rules..). Wanna put a nice relaxing wooden swing in your front yard? You can’t, it’s not allowed.

I have so much more to say, but I’m on a road trip right now and don’t have the time. I’ll leave you with the link below..

https://www.arkansasonline.com/news/...eadline-nears/
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Old 12-30-2021, 08:31 AM
 
2,672 posts, read 2,232,662 times
Reputation: 5019
Don't live in one of these communities. You're asking for trouble unless you literally ooze money and can devote appreciable amounts of your time to "conforming". It's interesting you mention the American Dream in your title, since these sorts of covenants could be construed both as the antithesis of that philosophy and as the very essence of that philosophy. Which seems to be really, the freedom to disagree just like the American Dream espouses.

The problem is... when the law uses it's own convenient philosophical preferences to choose sides or basically decide that "some" activism is appropriate in picking winners and losers in the issue of Constitutional rights.
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Old 12-30-2021, 09:17 PM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Arkansas
290 posts, read 151,290 times
Reputation: 413
Quote:
Originally Posted by mgforshort View Post
Our association was strict and we have been reprimanded for raising the garage door 1.5 inches to bleed the hot air in September, among other things.
They are the sort of stories which I'd heard over the years which had always made me say "No way" to any sort of HOA community. But upon reading the covenants for Bella Vista, there is nothing in them which could in any way be construed as giving the ACC power over things like partially open garage doors, what type of plants you have, or what kind of vehicle you park in your own driveway, or the dozens of other petty things which seem to crop up in HOA communities on a regular basis. It was only after very careful reading of the restrictions that I agreed to moving here, but it seems that the ACC now doesn't want to follow the rules that it says everybody else must follow.

Quote:
Then sometimes I drove to other parts of Butte County, and watch the junk cars in the yard, the pit bulls running unsupervised, the trash spilling to the street, and I think they could use some sort of association.
We lived for 6 years in Shasta County, and it's the same there. We were in a nice (non-HOA!) subdivision in Redding before our move to Arkansas, and there were no problems along those lines. But especially out in the rural areas, you can find a beautiful home, very well tended, and next door is a battered mobile home held together with duct tape and a junk yard. In fact before we purchased here my wife flew out to look at a home near to Pea Ridge, but in an unincorporated area of the county. The home was very nice, but the general feel of the surrounding properties rather put us off the idea.

On the news story linked above, it was Mr. Parsons' white fence here which is what brought me to this thread, as it was only after the event that I heard of the protest held over on U.S. 71, otherwise I would have almost certainly gone over to lend support.
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Old 12-31-2021, 09:28 AM
 
Location: Paradise CA, that place on fire
2,022 posts, read 1,736,685 times
Reputation: 5906
Dear PBC-1966, if you have time please search for posts from "mnita" here on the Arkansas forum. She had written the "bible" of Bella Vista. Sadly, she is no longer with us, but she is missed tremendously by everyone here, and not on the Arkansas forum only.
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Old 03-24-2022, 05:58 PM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Arkansas
290 posts, read 151,290 times
Reputation: 413
Following the ad and issues regarding white fences, this ad just appeared in the latest newsletter regarding the parking of certain vehicles, as I mentioned previously:




For those in Bella Vista, or those interested in Bella Vista, I intend to send a letter to the A.C.C. asking exactly why the committee believes it has the powers set out in its new policies mentioned in the current policies manual, and including a similar request re the prohibition of previously approved white fences. I'll get back to you all with any reply I receive.
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Old 03-25-2022, 10:40 PM
 
Location: Bella Vista, AR
425 posts, read 505,663 times
Reputation: 778
Quote:
Originally Posted by PBC-1966 View Post
Following the ad and issues regarding white fences, this ad just appeared in the latest newsletter regarding the parking of certain vehicles, as I mentioned previously:




For those in Bella Vista, or those interested in Bella Vista, I intend to send a letter to the A.C.C. asking exactly why the committee believes it has the powers set out in its new policies mentioned in the current policies manual, and including a similar request re the prohibition of previously approved white fences. I'll get back to you all with any reply I receive.
I’m all ears! Please keep us posted.
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Old 03-26-2022, 01:59 PM
 
2,708 posts, read 2,208,930 times
Reputation: 2811
With the upcoming POA election coming who do we want or not want in there? Also who does the A.C.C answer to and how do we change who controls it?
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Old 03-26-2022, 02:37 PM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Arkansas
290 posts, read 151,290 times
Reputation: 413
Quote:
Originally Posted by reubenray View Post
With the upcoming POA election coming who do we want or not want in there? Also who does the A.C.C answer to and how do we change who controls it?
I'm sure long-term residents will have more detail, but to me it appears that it is Cooper Communities which still has ultimate control over the ACC. From the ACC's own 2022 manual, section 1.02 (B):
Quote:
ACC Membership.The Membership of the ACC is composed of not less than three persons appointed by the Board of Directors of Cooper Communities, Inc. (hereinafter “CCI”) who control and maintain voting privileges. The Membership shall elect the Board of Directors of the ACC to terms of office as provided in the Articles of Incorporation and the Bylaws of the ACC.
As I understand it, the ACC only came into existence about 30 years ago. If you look at your restrictive covenants you'll see that they date back to 1965, which is when Cooper set out its original development (and probably why they don't contain all the crazy restrictions and arbitrary powers of much more recent HOA developments). There has been only one addition to those covenants, added in 1993 to allow the newly created ACC to charge fees. So I stand to be corrected, but it seems to me that the ACC ultimately still answers directly to Cooper Communities.
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Old 03-26-2022, 10:08 PM
 
Location: Bella Vista, AR
425 posts, read 505,663 times
Reputation: 778
Yes, Cooper Communities has complete control over the ACC. To muddy the waters, the “ACC” is controlled by BVVACC, Inc. (Bella Vista Village Architectural Control Committee). Cooper’s board of directors appoints all board members for the BVVACC. The BVVACC then appoints 5 members to oversee the convoluted ACC.

Clear as mud?

https://bvacc.com/
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