Effective January 1, 2016, residents were allowed to install clotheslines and drying racks in their exclusive use backyards. The statute defines a clothesline to include a cord, rope, or wire from which laundered items may be hung to dry. The law specifically prohibits a balcony, railing, awning, or other part of a structure from qualifying as a clothesline. (Civil Code Section 4750.10).

Under the statute, associations can adopt reasonable restrictions on clotheslines and drying racks. It defines a "reasonable restriction" as one that does not significantly increase the cost of using a clothesline or drying rack.

If a board wants to regulate clotheslines, it must amend its rules or CC&Rs. Associations should also amend their CC&Rs to remove clotheslines prohibitions which are common.

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