Community Association

Brooks v. Northglen Ass’n, 141 S.W.3d 158 (Tex. 2004). (Joinder; Jurisdiction; Homeowners Assessments; Foreclosure)
The court lacks subject matter jurisdiction, in a lot owner’s action against a community association, to issue judgments with respect to other subdivisions governed by the same association. Although accumulation of assessment increases is allowed by the Texas Property Code, a deed restriction that specifically ties any increase to the previous year’s assessment inherently prohibits accumulation of assessment over multiple years. Late fees or charges applied by a community association after a homestead has been acquired may not be enforced through foreclosure. Amendments to bylaws or deed restrictions do not give the property owner the required notice to make foreclosure an appropriate remedy.

Brooks v. Northglen Ass’n, 76 S.W.3d 162 (Tex. App.—Texarkana 2002, pet. granted) aff’d in part, vacated in part, rev’d in part, 141 S.W.3d 158 (Tex. 2004).(Joinder; Jurisdiction; Homeowners Assessments; Foreclosure)
The court has subject matter jurisdiction, in a lot owner’s action against a community association, to issue judgments with respect to other subdivisions governed by the same association. Overruled by Brooks v. Northglen Ass’n, 141 S.W.3d 158 (Tex. 2004). Accumulation of assessment increases is allowed when a deed restriction specifically ties any increase to the previous year’s assessment. Overruled by Brooks v. Northglen Ass’n, 141 S.W.3d 158 (Tex. 2004). Late fees or charges applied by a community association after a homestead has been acquired may not be enforced through foreclosure. Amendments to bylaws or deed restrictions do not give the property owner the required notice to make foreclosure an appropriate remedy.

Dean v. Lafayette Place (Section One) Council of Co-Owners, Inc., 999 S.W.2d 814 (Tex. App.—Houston [1st Dist.] 1999, no pet.). (Cross-Point; Amendments to Declaration)
If an appellee is satisfied with the relief granted by the trial court, but merely wants to present additional, independent grounds for affirming the trial court's judgment, no notice of appeal is required. The independent grounds for affirmance can be raised in a cross-point. A statute that changes the minimum percentage of voters required for an action as a matter of law will not be deemed to have “otherwise applied” in a declaration simply because the declarations percentage of voters is higher than required under the new law. Although, the declaration provision technically satisfies the statutory requirement, it is not taking advantage of the law.

Hensley v. Village of Tiki Island, No. 14–03–00423–CV, 2004 WL 2162637 (Tex. App.—Houston [14th Dist.] 2004, pet. denied) (mem. op.). (Standing; Mootness)
A property owner does not have standing to sue a municipality for granting another property owner variance from the deed restrictions to install a propane tank, nor the property owner who installed the tank, if the owner filing suit does not claim that he was personally injured as a result. Where an owner installs a propane tank that is not in compliance with the restrictions, but later obtains a permit for the installation, there can be no suit for violation of the restrictions.

Holly Park Condo. Homeowners’ Ass’n, Inc. v. Lowery, 310 S.W.3d 144 (Tex. App.—Dallas 2010, pet. denied). (Wrongful Foreclosure; TUCA)
Section 82.113(e) of the TUCA, which grants a condominium association the power to choose either judicial or non-judicial foreclosure is superseded by a provision in the governing documents of the condominium association requiring judicial foreclosure.

In re Spectrum Ass’n Management, LP, No. 04-10-00493-CV, 2010 WL 3160865 (Tex. App.—San Antonio Aug. 11, 2010, no pet.) (mem. op.) (per curium). (Denial of Writ of Mandamus; Per Curiam)
A court may deny the petition for a writ of mandamus without issuing an opinion as to the reasons why the relator is not entitled to the relief.

Matzel v. Stonecrest Ranch Prop. Owners’ Ass’n, 305 S.W.3d 368 (Tex. App.—Houston [14th Dist.] 2010, no pet.). (Removal of a Director)
An association board of directors does not have the inherent duty to state the cause for the removal of one of its officers. Therefore, a board of directors is not negligent for removing an officer without stating the cause for removal unless required to do so by the governing documents of the association.

Nowroozi v. Strozier, No. 13-99-230-CV, 2000 Tex. App. LEXIS 3591 (Tex. App.—Corpus Christi May 25, 2000, no pet.) (not designated for publication). (No-Evidence Summary Judgment)
Appellant fails to present a “scintilla of evidence” in a suit against association directors when he provides only conclusory statements in an affidavit which fails to establish that the bylaws prohibit the activity, that the party was engaging in the activity, that the officers and directors had the duty or power to enforce restrictive covenants, or that the individuals were officers and directors of the association.

Powell v. Tall Timbers Prop. Owners Ass’n, No. 09-01-495 CV, 2002 WL 1990930 (Tex. App.—Beaumont Aug. 29, 2002, no pet.) (not designated for publication). (Deed Restrictions; Association Directors)
A deed restriction that gives the “right” to prosecute violators of the covenants does not impose the “duty” to prosecute on association directors.
When the deed restrictions state that the remaining restrictions shall not be affected if any of the restrictions become invalid or for any reason are not enforced, an association's right to enforce assessments remains in effect even if the association does not comply with the remainder of the covenants.

Rutherford v. Norred, No. 14-05-00571-CV, 2006 WL 771467 (Tex. App.—Houston [14 Dist.] Mar. 28, 2006, no pet.) (mem. op.). (Association’s Property Rights)
The power to sell property owned by a non-profit association is granted statutorily and thus does not need to be articulated by the governing documents. However, any limitations on these powers must be specifically stated in its governing documents.

Samms v. Autumn Run Cmty. Improvement Ass’n, 23 S.W.3d 398 (Tex. App.—Houston [1st Dist.] 2000, no pet.). (Assessments)
An association board may change the assessments when the deed restrictions expressly grant them the authority, even when the restrictions also expressly state the original assessment amount. The board need not record the change for the change to be effective. If an association is acting in accordance with the restrictions, a property owner is not in a position to repudiate the association’s actions. Accordingly, the association is not in a position to ratify, and consequently, ratification cannot be a proper basis of summary judgment.

Schroeder v. Rancho Escondido Cmty. Improvement Ass’n, 248 S.W.3d 415 (Tex. App.—Beaumont 2008, no pet). (Ripeness)
A property owner’s claim against a community association with regards to amending deed restrictions is not ripe until the association has attempted to amend or has amended the restrictions at issue.

Simpson v. Afton Oaks, 145 S.W.3d 169 (Tex. 2004). (Declaratory Judgment; Joinder)
The failure to join other property owners in subdivision to action against homeowner’s association does not deprive the court of subject matter jurisdiction on appeal of a declaratory judgment action. (citing Brooks v. Northglen Ass’n, 141 S.W.3d 158 (Tex. 2004)). To avoid the risk of inconsistent judgments, the association must seek relief at trial by seeking abatement, joinder of absent homeowners, or special exceptions. The amendment provision in the deed restrictions must be followed regardless of how inconvenient, and the amendment process set forth in Chapter 204 of the Texas Property Code cannot be used if the deed restrictions contain an amendment.

West Airport Homeowners Ass’n, Inc. v. Catellon, No. 01-11-00334-CV, 2011 WL 3819634 (Tex. App.—Houston [1st Dist.] Aug. 25, 2011, no pet. h.) (mem. op.) (per curium). (Motion to Dismiss)
When an appellant no longer wishes to pursue an appeal and files a motion to dismiss, the court may dismiss the appeal and render all other pending motions moot unless disposition would prevent a party from seeking relief to which it would otherwise be entitled.

Wilchester West Concerned Homeowners LDEF, Inc. v. Wilchester West Fund, Inc., 177 S.W.3d 552 (Tex. App.—Houston [1st Dist.] 2005, pet. denied). (Standing; Restrictive Covenants; Use Agreements)
A non-profit homeowners organization has standing to bring suit for declaratory relief against the community association on behalf of its members when its members would be injured by the act at issue in the claim, the interests the organization seeks to protect are germane to the organization’s purpose, and the declaratory relief being sought can reasonably be assumed to benefit all injured members of the organization. An association is not required to provide owners with notice of amendments to deed restrictions unless the requirement is stated by the governing documents. Circulation of a petition is considered proper procedure for obtaining approval of amendments to restrictions as long as it is not prohibited by the governing documents, the petition provides the owners with the opportunity to review the exact language of the proposed amendments, and there is no evidence that the petition contained material non-disclosures or misrepresentations concerning the language of the amendments themselves. An association’s decision to enter into a use agreement with a fitness club complies with its authority to act to promote the health, safety, and welfare of the owners under the deed restrictions, as well as its authority to enter into contracts and incur liabilities under the Non-Profit Corporation Act and Texas Property Code.

Winter v. Bean, No. 01-00-00417-CV, 2002 WL 188832 (Tex. App.—Houston [1st Dist.] Feb. 7, 2002, no pet.) (not designated for publication). (Notice; Mutuality of Obligation)
Amendments to deed restrictions are not void for lack of notice when restrictions contain provision authorizing amendments but contain no provision requiring notice. Amendments to deed restrictions are not void for lack of mutuality of obligation when amendments apply uniformly to all residents, even though a city ordinance similar to the amendment only applies to some residents.