Documents for Owners and Residents

Purpose of a Community Association  The primary purpose of the McLean Gardens Condominium Association is to provide for the governance, business, and communal aspects of the association.  These goals are achieved by administering, maintaining, and enhancing a residential real estate development through the establishment of a system of property rights, binding covenants and restrictions, and rules and regulations.

Sources of Legal Obligations for a Community Association: A community association derives its legal obligations from several sources.  Read more.

  • Federal, state, and local statutes, regulations and case law (court decisions)
  • Legal documents unique to the community association that bind the association and its owners, e.g., Declaration, Bylaws, Policy Resolutions etc.
  • Lender requirements – for example, requirements set by secondary mortgage institutions e.g., Fannie Mae, VA FHA
  • Standards set by professional bodies – for example, auditing standards set by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).

Governing Documents The covenants, conditions, and restrictions (CC&Rs) are the governing documents that dictate how the homeowners association operates and what rules the owners – and their tenants and guests – must obey.

These legal documents might also be called the bylaws, the master deed, the house rules or another name. These documents and rules are legally enforceable by the homeowners association, unless a specific provision conflicts with federal, state, or local laws.

Covenants and Deed Restrictuons When people buy a parcel of real estate, the bundle of rights is defined in the deed to the property, as it is in the previous deeds for the same parcel.  The provisions in deeds which define or limit the rights of ownership are often called covenants or deed restrictions. The legal community speaks of these covenants or restrictions as “running with the land.” That is, they attach and apply to the land, no matter who owns it in the future.

Declaration of Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions  Instead of inserting all of the same covenants and restrictions into each individual deed in a community development, the developer draws up Declaration of Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions – or something with a similar name. The developer recorded this declaration with The Recorder of Deeds, Office of Tax and Revenue, Government of the District of Columbia before any of the real estate was transferred to any other owner. This means that the declaration is in the chain of title for each piece of real estate. Its terms are binding on the real estate itself, as well as on its original and succeeding purchasers. As a result, the declaration defines the bundle of rights of each owner in the community association. For planned communities, it is called the declaration of covenants, conditions, and restrictions, or CC&Rs.

MGCA Documents for Unit Owners  Both unit owners and tenants in McLean Gardens should familiarize themselves with governing documents of the MGCA.

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