While residents are entitled to quiet enjoyment of their property, not all noise is considered a violation. Noise will constitute a nuisance if the noise is beyond that level of noise that a normal person of ordinary sensitivities would find offensive. Upon receiving a noise complaint, a board must try to independently verify whether the noise is unreasonable.


Under Civil Code section 5105, associations may not prohibit owners from nominating themselves to serve on an association’s board. Many associations have governing document provisions for a nominating committee, although we often see that many associations do not use their nominating committee, even if their documents provide for one, sometimes due to the difficulty of finding owners willing to serve on the committee. Most board nominations come from self-nomination or nomination from other members before the ballots are printed and mailed. Some governing documents may prohibit or allow nominations from the floor at the annual meeting. Other governing documents may ban the use of write-in votes, effectively prohibiting “nomination” after the ballots are mailed.

Nonprofit Corporation

Most, but not all, CIDs are incorporated as nonprofit corporations. Most are nonprofit mutual benefit corporations under Corporations Code section 7110 et seq. A very small number of large, typically master, associations may be nonprofit public benefit corporations under the public benefit corporation law, Corporations Code section 5110 et seq.

Notice of Default

An association seeking to foreclose on an assessment lien must serve a Notice of Default on the person named in the association’s records as the owner of the property against which the assessment lien was recorded. The Notice of Default must be served in the same manner as a summons, which generally includes personal service, substituted service, service by acknowledgment and receipt, and service by publication in a newspaper.


Notices of board meetings must be given by general delivery (Civil Code §4045) and include the agenda for the meeting. Unless the bylaws provide for a longer period of notice, except for emergency meetings, members shall be given at least four days’ notice of the time and place of a meeting and at least two days’ notice of an executive session of the board. (Civil Code §4920) Notice must also be sent by mail to any owner who has requested notification by mail.


A nuisance is the substantial and unreasonable interference with the use or enjoyment of one’s property. There are endless of examples such as loud noises, offensive odors, smoke, and excessive light (such as a neighbor’s lights shining onto another’s property). Compare to trespass. A trespass is the invasion of one’s right of possession of land. If a neighbor mows his lawn every night at midnight, he may be liable for nuisance, but if he enters his neighbor’s property and mows down his flower garden, he has committed a trespass.

Neighbor to Neighbor Disputes

Refers to the common situation wherein neighbors complain to the board about each other’s alleged violations of governing documents or other objectionable behavior. While some of these complaints may be based on substantial and documented violations of the documents, many are generated by bad relations between the neighbors, and cannot be resolved by association action.


Newsletters can be a highly effective way to communicate with members regarding general association matters such as planned common area maintenance and repairs, commonly breached C&CRs provisions and rules, and upcoming board and membership meetings. However, newsletters should not be used to disseminate private information, such as individual account information and disciplinary matters.