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Ones For Real Estate: New Texas HOA Legislation Means Changes For Property Owners

FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) — The way homeowners associations in Texas operate is about to change after the passing of new legislation.

The HOA reform laws come as a result of a pair of companion bills in the House and Senate. Together they are known as the Realtor Bills.

Shana Acquisto, broker and agent of Acquisto Real Estate, said, "What these bills do is provide just that balance between private property rights and community standards."

According to Acquisto, the legislation has several prongs but there are three in particular that effect the 6 million Texans who belong to an HOA across the state.

First off there will be a $375 cap on a re-sale certificate, and a $75 cap to update that certificate. Previously there was no cap. In addition all of those fees will need to be disclosed on the front end of a purchase.

Acquisto said, "We as realtors will be able to have access and a place to go to know what these fees are up front rather than getting down the road. So it's something they are going to know up front, and could be negotiated in."

Next, is a mandate that all agendas, minutes, managing documents, and so on be published online for all HOA members to easily access. In addition an appeals process must be established in the case of a documented HOA violation.

Acquisto adds, "Forcing them to be more forth coming with this information will make people feel a little bit better because everyone wants their property to be protected and their values to be protected."

The last major portion of the legislation according to Acquisto also limits an HOA Board Members involvement beyond their board duties. It prohibits them and their spouses from serving in other committee's where a conflict of interest can happen.

Acquisto said, "There are some things going on that just makes a homeowner feel much better about belonging to the association and making everything transparent


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