Voting to Protect Views in Community Associations

Homeowners in California do not have an automatic right to the protection of the views from their home. Unless there are deed restrictions or restrictions in CC&Rs that protect a homeowner's views, they usually have no protection at all. Consequently, many homeowner associations are amending their CC&Rs in order to protect views which preserve and maximizes the value of those homes.

The one exception is that spite fences are considered to be a private nuisance and consequently, are not permitted.

California law defines a spite fence as:

Any fence or other structure in the nature of a fence unnecessarily exceeding 10 feet in height maliciously erected or maintained for the purpose of annoying the owner or occupant of adjoining property is a private nuisance. Any owner or occupant of adjoining property injured either in his comfort or the enjoyment of his estate by such nuisance may enforce the remedies against its continuance.

Depending upon the facts of the case, a hedge or row of trees may be considered a spite fence.

After an HOA attorney drafts an appropriate amendment, the proposed amendment. must be approved by a quorum of the membership using the two envelope, secret ballot process.

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