Re: Variations on low cost housing
From: Sharon Villines (
Date: Thu, 22 May 2008 06:42:38 -0700 (PDT)

On May 21, 2008, at 2:10 PM, melanie griffin wrote:

but see this section of Westwood (NC)'s declaration (which is distinct from
its bylaws and rules and regulations (??)

"Other than as expressly permitted in the Bylaws" means that the Association may write other rules as part of its bylaws that change the rules in the Declaration. Unless this is expressly stated, rules in the Declaration cannot be changed without redoing the whole legal process that established the property as a condominium (or whatever) in the first place.

To change a Declaration, you have to de-corporate and then re- corporate. I'm not a lawyer but that's how ours has been explained to us.

The homeowners association controls the Bylaws, but the developer controls the declaration. In DC in order to sell the units, the developer has to file a Declaration before there can be homeowners.

The same is true of our condominium law -- it will state how things should be done "unless otherwise specified in the Bylaws." The Condominium law and the Declaration set a defaults on a lot of issues. Others they control absolutely.

In Cohousing it is often difficult to distinguish between the developer and the association, but legally, there is a distinction.

I think the paragraph quoted below is a perfect example of legal mumbo jumbo from someone "putting on airs" as my grandmother would say. Why would you use "consummate" instead of "complete." "Receipt" instead of "receiving." "Such" instead of "this." To understand this paragraph you also have to go back to primary school to diagraming sentences. Separate all the clauses and conjunctions, etc. And it actually isn't even good grammar. Although I must confess I don't remember the distinction is between grammar and syntax, this paragraph is missing a bunch of it.

If you've studied German, where sentences can be pages long, it helps. But not much.


Within thirty days after receipt of the Notice, the Sale Committee shall either approve the proposed transaction in writing (the "Approval") or shall furnish the Selling Owner with a signed offer (the "Offer") from a purchaser approved (the "Approved Grantee") by the Sale Committee, upon the same terms stated in the Notice, except that the Approved Grantee shall have not less than thirty (30) days subsequent to the date of the Offer within which to close the transaction. So long as the Offer is monetarily identical to what was contained in the Notice, the Selling Owner shall promptly accept the Offer. The Approval of the Sale Committee shall be in recordable form signed by any two members of the Association's Board and shall be delivered to the purchaser. The failure of the Association to act within such thirty (30) day period shall be deemed to constitute approval of the proposal in the Notice, but shall not eliminate the Association's obligation to provide the Approval
in recordable form, as aforesaid. The Selling Owner shall be bound to
consummate the transaction with the Approved Grantee per the Offer.

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