ASHBROOK COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION:
GENERAL INFORMATION AND OVERVIEW
(Please refer to the Recorded Documents, Bylaws, and Architectural Standards in your Disclosure Book for more detailed information)
Ashbrook Community Association is important to you.
As the owner of your lot you are required to be a member of the Association. Other associations exist in almost the same form in many developments. Realtors and investment analysts agree that the market value of homes depends in large part on the effectiveness of such associations.
Our Association is a non-stock corporation with certain duties and responsibilities to its members. These include maintenance and regulation of the common areas which are owned in common by all members. Payment for improvements and the maintenance of the common areas, as well as insurance on the common areas, is accomplished through assessments on each home. The quality and extent of the maintenance is governed by the amount of this assessment.
Another key duty of our Association is architectural control. This is divided into two areas.
First, no exterior additions or changes are allowed unless there is prior approval by the Architectural Review Committee. The Association has the authority to have any exterior addition or change removed at the owner's expense, if an owner making such addition or change fails to get approval or does not comply with the approved plans.
Secondly, each owner must be alert to exterior appearance of his/her home as the Association can restrict unbecoming features. Thus, Architectural control is a group effort to ensure architectural standards and harmony for the community.
The specific legal construction of the Association and procedures for its operation are included in the Declaration of Covenants and Restrictions (hereinafter referred to as the Documents). These documents are recorded in the Clerk's Office of Chesterfield County. All owners should have received copies when purchasing their homes, as well as copies of the Bylaws and Architectural Standards for the Association. If, as a member, you do not have a copy of these documents, please contact the Management Company of the Association who will provide them. Association policies and guidelines made pursuant to these documents are included in this handbook. Updates and additions may be published from time to time.
THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
The Board of Directors is charged, under the Code of Virginia and the Property Owners Association Act, to administer the Recorded Documents, Covenants, Bylaws and Restrictions of Ashbrook.
The Board of Directors is a group of five representatives elected in accordance with the provisions of the Code of Virginia and the Association's Bylaws. The Board has been established to collect assessments, contract for services, and enforce regulations as authorized by the Documents. In addition, the Board works to promote projects and activities that better our community in general. The Board meets on a regular basis to discuss matters and make decisions concerning the community. All meetings are open to the membership and the Board encourages everyone to attend. Owners are encouraged to correspond with the Board about any concerns to be addressed at the meeting.
Members of the Board are elected to three year staggered terms. There is an annual election to fill expired terms. Interim Board vacancies are filled by Board appointment to serve until the next annual election.
After the annual election, the Board elects the Association Officers to serve for the upcoming year. Interim Officer vacancies are filled by Board appointment to serve out the remainder of the annual term.
It is the Board's responsibility to ensure that all Recorded Documents, Covenants, Bylaws, and Architectural Standards are followed, and the Management Company is instructed to carry out those responsibilities on behalf of the Board.
The Management Company provides most of the operational activities for the Board and is on call 24 hours per day for the Association.
It is important to note that the Management Company is an agent of the Board. The Management Company is hired by the Board, reports directly to the Board, and receives instructions from the Board. Unfortunately the Board sometimes has to take an adversarial role with a member and instructs the Management Company to send a delinquency letter or covenant violation letter informing that the member is in violation of the Association's instruments. It needs to be remembered that the Management Company is performing its job as defined by the Board.
The Management Company is a paid contractor of the Association. The Board hires the Management Company under a contract for a set number of years and periodically reviews the performance of the Management Company and compares its services with those of other established professional community management companies. The management fee charged to the Association is ultimately determined by the amount of time it takes to service our Association. The more services we request and the greater our time demands, the more we will pay for our management fees. The Association may contract with the Management Company to provide specific services. These services can include:
Receive and deposit owners' assessment payments; process delinquent homeowner fees and late notices and act as liaison with the Collection Attorney; handle residents questions and complaints; send financial statements to the Board; send monthly copies of checks and bank statements to the Treasurer; contract for Association services and make payments in a timely manner; maintain books and forward them to the auditor; assist in the preparation of the annual budget; store Association records; prepare Certificate of Resale and Disclosure Packages for owners; advise and consult with Board as necessary on insurance coverage; follow through on insurance claims; meet with the Board for their meetings; attend Annual Members' Meeting; advise Board on Federal, State, and local laws which may affect the Association; seek methods to provide cost savings measures for the Association; open and close accounts, and transfer funds, in the Association's name; perform routine on-site inspections of buildings and grounds; inspect for covenant violations; handle complaints and enforcement of covenant violations; and continue to develop, present, and implement preventive maintenance programs.
Every owner and tenant shall be a member of the Association
Members (each home) in good standing shall be entitled to two (2) votes, except if a Family Dwelling Unit is occupied by a Tenant as his principal residence, the Owner shall be entitled to one (1) vote and the Tenant is entitled to one (1) vote.
The Association carries general liability and property insurance on all common areas and community owned structures. It is each homeowner and tenant's responsibility to provide their own insurance covering their home, property, and liability.
ASSESSMENTS AND THE BUDGET
The annual assessment is levied against each homeowner to finance the Association's budget. Special assessments may be required for specific capital improvements or emergency needs.
Annual and special assessments, including any interest costs and attorney fees, are a continuing lien against each home until paid. Assessments are also the personal obligation of the owner of each home when the assessment is due.
The annual assessment pays for the management fees, insurance on the common areas, common area lawn care, common area building maintenance, maintenance of walkways, exterior lighting, certain aspects of the Lake, bridges and docks, pavilion, recreation facilities, and other miscellaneous items, provided the assessment adopted by the Board and the funds available are sufficient to meet the need. A special interest bearing reserve account is established for long term capital improvements and unexpected expenses.
It is important to remember that the Association can provide whatever services the Members desire; however additional services or increase in the levels of service is passed to the owners through increases in assessment amounts.
The annual assessment is due and payable on January 1 of each year. Members in good standing may pay in four equal quarterly installments due on January 1, April 1, July 1, and October 1. Any assessment not paid by the tenth day following the due date incurs a late fee of $15.00, and a notice will be sent to inform the owner of the overdue payment. After 31 days a final notice will be sent to the owner and the account will be referred to the Collection Attorney. Interest and the Attorney's fees must be paid by the owner.
ACCELERATED PAYMENT CRITERIA
If two consecutive quarters' fees are more than 30 days late (and require action by an attorney) the requested judgment will be for an accelerated payment of the remainder of the year's assessment. The owner will also be responsible for all court costs and attorney's fees related to the collection process.
In October of each year, the Finance and Audit Committee will meet to review the delinquent accounts and payment history of the past year. The accounts that have been routinely delinquent will not be permitted a quarterly payment schedule during the upcoming year. Notification of the accelerated payment requirements will be mailed to the affected owners by November 1.
Payment for the entire calendar year will be due in full on January 1 if:
Payment has been accelerated in the proceeding year, or
Payment has been more than 30 days late three or more times in the proceeding year.
COMPLAINTS AND OWNER'S RIGHTS
Any Owner or Tenant who knows of a violation of the Ashbrook Covenants, Bylaws, Rules and Regulations, or Architectural Standards, has a right to force compliance through the Board or in Court. Violations or complaints should be brought to the attention of the Board or the Management Company. Refer to the Covenant Violations Process Section for more details
The following are not allowed to be stored or parked on any lot, common area, or street in Ashbrook: unlicensed vehicles and those with expired tags, dual-wheel vehicles over 6000 lbs. GVW; campers; recreational vehicles; house, livestock, boat, and utility trailers; school buses. See the Documents for more detailed information.
Residents are asked to maintain off street parking for the safety of our neighborhood.
VEHICLE/ TRAILER/ BOAT STORAGE
Spaces are available, to members in good standing, for leasing in the locked storage corral.
Canoes and small boats may be kept in the Boat Rack on the dam for a nominal fee.
Call the Management Company for details and pricing.
RESALE OF HOMES
To assure orderly collection of assessments, always notify the Management Company when you are planning to sell your house and, when it is sold, provide the Management Company with the full name, address, and the business and home telephone numbers of the buyer or agent for the buyer.
In addition, at least ten days prior to the sale of your home, the owner (seller) must contact the Management Company and request a Disclosure Package, as required by the Virginia POA Act, to be prepared for the purchaser with information concerning the Association's financial status, the Bylaws, the Articles of Incorporation, Covenants, Architectural Standards, and Rules and Regulations (in selected excerpts from the Documents).
The homes in Ashbrook are single family homes and will have no more than one unrelated family unit per household.
Leases shall be for a period of no less than six months.
No home may be used for a rooming house, boarding house, or hotel.
All leases must be in writing and provide that the rights of the tenants shall be subject to Ashbrook's Declaration and Restrictions, Association Documents, Rules and Regulations, and Architectural Standards, and such will be made a part of all leases.
A copy of the lease shall be delivered or mailed to the Management Company. This will be strictly enforced.
Notify the Chesterfield County Police with any problems with excessive noise.
Refer to the Ashbrook Recorded Documents and the Chesterfield County Code for guidelines and restrictions.
Notify the Chesterfield County Police with any problems with security.
Please also keep the Ashbrook Safety/Security/ Neighborhood Watch Committee apprised of any safety and security situations and concerns.
See Section 28 of the Architectural Standards.
Usage of Ashbrook Lake is restricted to Ashbrook owners and tenants and their accompanied guests and is at their own risk.
Swimming in the lake is not recommended.
Ashbrook Lake is classified as a BMP for Chesterfield County , and flows into the Swift Creek Reservoir- one of the main sources of Chesterfield 's drinking water—and as such
NO gas or diesel boat motors or powerboats are allowed.
Electric boat motors ARE allowed.
Users must obey posted rules and regulations.
No one may stock the Lake with any fish or other wildlife without written approval from the Board.
No hunting or trapping is allowed at any time except by authorized personnel. Authorization must come from the Lake Committee and be approved by the Board of Directors.
No floating docks or other structures may be built or moored out past ten feet of the water line from a lakefront homeowner's property. Since the Lake is a Chesterfield County BMP, before constructing any such dock or structure the owner must get a license from the Chesterfield County Right-Of-Way Department.
RECREATION AND COMMON AREAS
Usage is restricted to Ashbrook owners and tenants and their accompanied houseguests, and is at their own risk.
Users must obey posted rules and regulations.