Iowa HOA Laws and Regulations
Know your association’s laws
Know your association’s laws
Homeowners’ Associations in Iowa created on or after July 1st, 2002 must be set up as a corporation. Most HOAs choose to file as non-profit corporations and are therefore subject to the Iowa Nonprofit Corporation Act. House File 2442 was also created to provide more specific regulations regarding the management of homeowners’ associations.
The primary purpose of an HOA is to protect property values and maintain community common areas. To raise funds for property maintenance, the community association may collect regular assessments from homeowners as described by the community’s budget.
Budgets must be prepared annually by the association board of directors. The proposed budgets must reflect estimated revenues and expenses for the year along with the estimated surplus or deficit from the current year. The annual budget must be made available to all association members at no cost.
The association has the right to charge penalties for homeowner violations. At least 14 days’ notice must be given for any penalties in which time the homeowner may state their case in front of the committee. The hearing committee is made up of at least three community members chosen by the board of directors that are not officers, directors, or employees of the association. If a majority of the committee vote against the penalty, the charge is no longer valid.
If stated by community regulations, the board of directors may suspend a homeowner’s use of common areas if the homeowner’s account is overdue. If the homeowner continues to use the common areas, the board may charge up to $100 per infraction. The board may also suspend voting rights if an account is more than 90 days overdue.
It is the responsibility of the board to keep and maintain detailed financial records. They must also prepare an annual financial report within 60 days after the close of the fiscal year. Copies of the financial report, or notice that copies are available upon request, must be sent to all association members at no cost.
The board of directors must maintain the official records of the association such as:
Official records must be made available to all association members upon request. If documents are not provided by the board of directors within ten days of written notice, the association member may begin charging minimum damages of $50 per day on the eleventh day up to ten days. The association may charge members for the actual costs of making and mailing copies.
Association meetings must take place at least annually to discuss community matters and, if necessary, elect board members. Special association meetings may be called by the board of directors or with a 10% vote from association members. Quorum is met when 30% of the voting interest is present unless otherwise stated in community bylaws.
Any amendments to community rules or regulations require a 2/3 vote from association members at an association meeting that has made a quorum.
All association members are eligible to serve on the board of directors. There can be no limitations requiring certain qualifications other than association membership. Members can be nominated at election meetings. A member is permitted to nominate themselves.
In addition to having annual member meetings, association members have the right to attend all board meetings. The board of directors may not prohibit the ability of association members to record, either audio or video, board meetings, though they may impose reasonable regulations. The board must provide at least 48 hours’ notice of all board meetings by posting information in common areas or can mail notice at least seven days before the meeting.
Homeowners have the right to fly the United States flag on their property. The HOA may regulate the location and size of the flag but cannot prohibit flags entirely.