Why do I have to fill out an application/go through the Architectural process when I am replacing something minor (or something exactly the same)?
One of the responsibilities of the management of Harbor Bay Isle is to keep accurate and current records on each residence. This is key when a homeowner goes to sell their home and a disclosure statement is required – by keeping accurate records, we can provide documentation of all work that has been completed, including painting, new roofing, etc. It also enables Project Associations to ensure all CC & R’s and Architectural rules are properly observed. Following this process helps us maintain the property values of all homes in Harbor Bay Isle.
As required by the CC & R’s, applications follow a procedure intended to ensure proper review and consideration. The Application Process typically proceeds as follows:
- Weeks 1 and 2:
Applications are accepted at the Community of Harbor Bay Isle Office.
- Week 3:
- Applications are reviewed by the Architectural Department for accuracy and completeness.
- The applications are then entered into our database, where the proposed project is documented and an application number is assigned.
- If incomplete, a letter is sent to the homeowner requesting the missing information.
- If complete, a confirmation letter is sent to the homeowner, which includes a site waiver release of liability for upcoming inspection of the property.
- A notification letter is generated and sent to all adjacent/affected neighbors.
- Each application is assigned a Community Architectural Committee (CAC) member that will review the project.
- A report form with 2 sections is generated for each application – 1 section for the CAC member assigned and 1 for the specific Project Architectural Committee (PAC) Member.
- Week 4:
- Application report forms are sent to the appropriate PAC member.
- The PAC member has 5 days to review the applications for their Project Association and make a recommendation to the CAC on the report form. Recommendations include: Approval, Denial, Incomplete, or Referral to the Board of Directors. Report forms are then returned to the Architectural Office.
- The recommendations/reports from the PAC are given to the previously-assigned CAC member for that specific application. The CAC member has 2 days to review the application and comments from the PAC, and to inspect the property. If appropriate, the homeowner may be contacted.
- The CAC member will present their findings at the CAC meeting, Monday night of Week 5. Neighbors have the opportunity to voice any concerns, and the homeowners involved may also be present to provide clarification.
- The CAC then votes on the application. Outcomes are: Approval, Denial, Incomplete, or Referral to the Board of Directors. Letters are sent to the applicants in the days after the meeting, and if approved, work on the proposed project may commence.
- During the 3rd and 4th week of the cycle, a new 2-week period for accepting applications begins.
A product cut sheet is a flyer or brochure provided by the manufacturer that clearly lists the specifications of the product in question. They usually contain photographs of the item, colors available, installation instructions, material information, warranty information and other options or specifics. Product cut sheets are very important to the approval process since they clarify any questions the volunteer inspectors may have. They are also key in keeping the records up to date for each residence. Generally, product cut sheets are available from your contractor, the store where the item will be purchased or from the manufacturer’s website. When submitting product cut sheets with your application, please be sure to include three copies, and indicate which options (color, size, style) apply to your specific application.
My tree is just too much work – it’s dirty, it drops a ton of leaves, and it’s ugly. Why can’t I just get rid of it?
When the Community of Harbor Bay Isle was developed as a planned community, it was dedicated as an Urban Forest. This means the Community must meet a specific standard regarding the number of trees in Harbor Bay Isle, and that it is committed to the welfare and proliferation of our trees. Trees not only add to the overall beauty of our neighborhoods, they add privacy, they filter air, water and sunlight, they create recreational areas for people, they can muffle neighborhood noises, and they can raise the property values of the entire neighborhood. They are an integral part of Harbor Bay Isle (see Our Urban Forest).
It is understood that trees can cause damage to sidewalks, fences, and foundations, and when this happens they often need to be removed. This is especially common as a tree matures and outgrows its present location. If a tree is removed, the Community may require a more appropriate tree replace it. Often, a more suitable tree can be planted – one with a less evasive root system or that will not grow as large. As the question above indicates, there are some superficial reasons that make trees bothersome, but the Community’s commitment to trees and their benefits far outweigh the negatives.
I put in an application to do some work on my house and it was denied – and now there is a house down the street that did the exact same work! Why did they get approved and why is there favoritism for some homeowners?
When an application is denied, the Community Architectural Committee (CAC) and theProject Architectural Committees (PAC) try and be as clear as possible as to the reason. The reason for denial is usually because the proposed project (or a part of the project) does not meet current, established rules and standards for your Project Association. Favoritism is never involved. Homeowners do have the option of appealing the decision. Especially in cases where a project features a new product or technology that was not available when the Architectural Rules and Standards were first created, it allows the Board to change or add a rule that now allows for it. The volunteer board members are human, however, and they may not always have the same opinion as the homeowner.
Situations also occur where a homeowner will disregard the Architectural Review Process. If a homeowner does their project without an application, or changes the plan they were approved for, they assume the risk that the project may be denied by the CAC. When this happens, the homeowner may have to redo the work, repaint, or remove an installed product (or whatever else needs to be done) to bring their house into compliance with the approved rules and standards. It can be very expensive and time consuming. It is important to remember the purpose of having a pro-active Architectural Process is to assure a consistency in our homes and neighborhoods, and to keep home values at their highest in the Community of Harbor Bay Isle.