Re: bylaws/lenders/consensus -bylaws advice
From: Rob Sandelin (
Date: Wed, 24 Aug 94 10:43 CDT
I would be very interested in hearing about anyone who has had 
consensus in their condominium association bylaws or declarations, 
which have gotten a favorable review from FNMA.  We were told by our 
attorney, that consensus would NOT be approved by FNMA and advised that 
2/3 majority vote was the standard "super majority".  Thus our legal 
documents which were reviewed by FMNA say 2/3 majority vote.

So what.  We have never made a decision by any kind of majority vote 
yet.  Consensus means a 100% majority and all of our "votes" have been 
unanimous.  Almost everything that matters about how your community 
will operate and function will have nothing to do with what is on the 
legal paperwork.  For example our condominium bylaws state the order of 
business of the annual meeting.  Have we ever run our annual meeting by 
that order? Of course not.  There are no Bylaws police which check up 
on you.  You can arrange your voting in what ever way you wish, you can 
have as many or no people on the "board" as you wish.  The bank is not 
going to check up on you.

Two bits of bylaws advice I have heard from 3 attorneys now and will 
pass on to those contemplating crafting bylaws. Include language in 
your bylaws which covers indemnification ( that means if a 
representative of the community acts in good faith in the bet of thier 
knowledge,  without willful or intentional misconduct, they shall not 
be held liable if they screw up)

Also cover Abrogation. This means No condition, obligation, or 
provision contained in the bylaws is abrogated or waived by reason of 
any failure to enforce same, irrespective of the number of violations 
or breaches which occur.  This means that if you create a rule and 
don't enforce it, the rule doesn't lose validity and you can enforce it 
whenever you want.  Having this language can keep you from being 
charged in a lawsuit of unfairly applying standards.

Rob Sandelin

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