Assistance With Expedited Foreclosures For Property Owners Associations

The expedited foreclosure process for a property owners association (POA) was modified to allow for mediation upon court order. The legislature also directed the Supreme Court to adopt forms specifically for the POA expedited foreclosure process. Last but not least, a citation for an expedited foreclosure can now be served in accordance with Rule 106 of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure.

For quality legal assistance with real estate matters affecting Texas associations, contact Avera Law Firm, P.L.L.C., by calling 512-615-3578 or completing an online form.

Helping You Understand Important Laws In The Texas Property Code

Following are issues you or your association may not know:

  • Section 202.007 of the Property Code allows for drought resistant landscaping and water conserving natural turf. The association still has the right to require detailed landscaping plans be submitted and approved by an association. The association is allowed to deny a submitted plan if the request does not comply with the "maximum aesthetic compatibility" of other landscaping in the subdivision. This is a very subjective criteria. Associations are cautioned to be reasonable with their decisions regarding these requests. The legislature seems to support owners that wish to change their landscaping to include elements that conserve water. We encourage all boards to educate themselves on how implementing xeriscaping can be accomplished in their communities. We also strongly urge boards to consider drafting and implementing rules regarding the use of xeriscaping. The aesthetics of the community can only be maintained through the adoption and enforcement of rules and guidelines.
  • Section 202.012 of the Property Code allows property owners to have flagpoles in their front yards. An association cannot restrict an owner from having a flagpole in the front yard as long as the front yard has a minimum setback line of 15 feet.
  • Section 209.004 of the Property Code deals with the association's management certificate and requires all property owner associations to file a management certificate with the county clerk between September 1, 2013 and January 1, 2014. County clerks must create a new index just for property owner association management certificates. We recommend that you review your management certificates for accuracy before filing.
  • Section 209.015 allows property owners that own two or more adjacent lot in a development to use a lot for defined residential purposes like driveways, installing septic systems. Owners must receive approval for the installation and associations must grant the request as long as the request complies with the deed restrictions. For example, an owner can now build a house on lot 1 and a separate garage on lot 2. As long as the restrictions allow for separate garages, then the request to build the garage on lot 2 must be granted. When it comes time to sell the lots, the lots must be sold together or they must be restored to vacant lots.
  • Section 209.0052 restrictions contracts for goods or services between the association and any director, certain family members of directors, or companies in which a director or certain family member have at least a 51% interest in the company.
  • Section 209.0059 was amended to allow a board to appoint a person to fill a board vacancy for any reason. The appointment can only fulfill the unexpired term. Once the term in office expires, an elected member, not an appointed member, must fill the position.