Homeowners’ Association Law
Interpreting Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (“CCRs”)
CCRs must be strictly construed in favor of the full use of the restricted property, and only clearly intended restrictions are enforceable. CCRs will not be interpreted to imply power.
As a rule, the language of the CCRs will govern their interpretation if the language is clear and explicit. A court will view the language in light of the CCRs as a whole and not use a disjointed, single paragraph, strict construction approach.
It is also well established that general language in the CCRs may not be interpreted so as to enlarge their scope. It is equally clear that a homeowners association may not under the guise of interpretation, expand its grant of authority.
CCRs Must Be Utilized in a Fair and Uniform Manner
The governing board of a homeowners’ association must weigh in a fair, uniform, and equitable way the interests of the community against the interests of the individuals residing therein. The members of the board may not exercise their power in such a way as to harm unnecessarily a substantial interest of the individual homeowners’. In sum, a homeowners’ association must balance individual interests against the general welfare. To this end, the board members are charged with the fiduciary obligation to exercise their authority with due care, in good faith and in a consistent manner both with the terms and purpose of the CCRs.