Consumer Advisory: Political signs and HOAs
Can a homeowner in an HOA place political signs in their yard or at their condominium?
DENVER (Oct. 14, 2016) -- Yes, there are laws that protect a homeowner’s right in a common interest community (commonly known as an HOA) to place political signs on their property, notes the Division of Real Estate at the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA).
With election day ahead on Tuesday, Nov. 8, homeowners have already been posting political signs in their neighborhoods. Homeowner Associations need to follow the Colorado statutory conditions allowing homeowners to express their political expression during this election season.
The Colorado Common Interest Ownership Act (CCIOA), addresses this issue in Section 38-33.3-106.5, C.R.S., entitled “Prohibitions contrary to public policy - patriotic and political expression...”. A political sign is defined in this statute as “a sign that carries a message intended to influence the outcome of an election, including supporting or opposing the election of a candidate, the recall of a public official, or the passage of a ballot issue.”
In summary, this law states that notwithstanding any provision in the declaration, bylaws, or rules and regulations of the association to the contrary, an association shall not prohibit the display of a political sign by the owner or occupant of a unit on property within the boundaries of the unit or in a window of the unit; however, the association may prohibit the display of political signs earlier than forty-five (45) days before the day of an election and later than seven (7) days after an election day.
In addition, the association may regulate the size and number of political signs.
Those regulations allow the HOA to only permit at least one (1) political sign per political office or ballot issue that is contested in a pending election.
Also, the HOA can set the maximum dimensions of each sign, which may be limited to the lesser of the maximum size allowed by any applicable city, town, or county ordinance that regulates the size of political signs on residential property, or thirty-six (36) inches by forty-eight (48) inches.
For more information about living in an HOA and your rights as homeowners, please visit the Division of Real Estate’s HOA Information and Resource Center website at dora.colorado.gov/dre.
The HOA Office registers and collects information concerning HOAs, including an HOA’s contact information, and handles consumer inquiries and complaints from homeowners. The HOA Office provides assistance and information to homeowners, HOA boards, declarants and other interested parties concerning their rights and responsibilities pursuant to the Colorado Common Interest Ownership Act (“CCIOA”).