Missouri HOA Laws and Regulations
Know your association’s laws
Know your association’s laws
There are no government acts that regulate homeowners’ associations in Missouri. The Condominium Property Act provides regulations for the management of condos but does not apply to HOAs. Although not required, most community associations choose to be organized as a non-profit and therefore must follow the Missouri Nonprofit Corporation Act. An HOA can remain unincorporated, but it hurts their ability to legally enforce community declarations and bylaws.
HOA rules in Missouri can vary widely because there are no standardized regulations in place. Each community can choose to create and enforce as many or as few rules as they desire so long as they do not contradict any federal or state laws. Typically, homeowners sign a contract to join the HOA upon purchase of property within a common interest community. Once the contract is signed, the new homeowner is subject to all regulations put forth by the association. It is important to review all association documentation before purchasing property in a CIC.
To start an incorporated common interest community, the initial board of directors or the declarant must submit the adopted Articles of Incorporation and bylaws to the secretary of state for filing. These will be the rules that all homeowners and the board of directors must follow. Emergency bylaws may also be created describing alternate means of calling a meeting, quorum requirements, and designation of additional and/or substitute directors in the event of an emergency.
Homeowners’ associations have the right to collect assessments according to community regulations. If an account becomes overdue, the board of directors can place liens on property or, in extreme cases, foreclose on the property despite on-time mortgage payments.
The board of directors must have at least three members. Board members may resign or be removed from office at any time. The remaining directors must appoint a temporary board member to fill the vacancy until the next election.
The board of directors cannot make any amendments to community regulations without the approval of association members. Any changes made to the declaration or bylaws must be filed with the secretary of state to become valid.
Member meetings are to take place annually, if not more frequently, as required by community bylaws. At these meetings, the association president and financial officer must present a report of community finances and any proposed changes. Homeowners may then vote on any propositions and elect board members. Notice for association meetings must be given no less than 10 days but no more than 60 before the meeting takes place. If notice is sent via mail, it must be sent no less than 30 days before the meeting.
Any homeowner in good standing with the association is permitted to view all community documents. The board of directors is responsible for making documents available during reasonable hours. Copies of any documents must be sent to homeowners upon written request.
HOA rules in Missouri vary widely. It is important to read and understand all community regulations before purchasing property in an HOA-managed community. Most homeowners’ associations require the signing of a contract upon purchase.