What is best way to adopt a new set of covenants?

Mike HunterQCan my HOA completely replace its current covenants with an entirely new set containing dozens of changes and new restrictions, with a single yes or no vote by each member, or must each separate change to the language of the existing covenants be voted on separately?

A: I have seen major covenant revisions handled both ways. Sometimes, each proposed change is listed separately on the ballot with a space for the owner to mark “for” or “against.”

However, in cases of older HOAs or condominiums with outdated covenants, we often find it simpler and less expensive to draft an entirely new set of covenants than to have an amendment with dozens of changes spelled out.

There have been so many changes to the laws and our knowledge of the mechanics of running a community have expanded so much in the last several years, that a comprehensive rewrite of the covenants is often the better choice.

The North Carolina Nonprofit Corporations Act says only that written ballots must describe each proposed action and provide an opportunity for members to vote for or against each action. Voting on the adoption of an “amended and restated” Declaration of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions would constitute a single action by the members.

Charlotte attorney Michael Hunter represents community and condominium associations for the firm of Horack Talley.

“Ask The Experts” Articles have been Reprinted with permission from the Charlotte Observer

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