Design & Construction Standards
Section One DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION STANDARDS LOUISIANNE A Community at Hard Times Plantation GENERAL OVERVIEW: The primary purpose of this neighborhood is to offer homeowners in this area a community ambiance similar to that found in earlier times in the garden districts of New Orleans, Louisiana, Charleston, South Carolina, and Savannah, Georgia and to attract residents who take pride in this purpose and can participate and enjoy the beauty intended. Creation of this ambiance is the carefully articulated arrangement of residences around the architectural styles, both with and without courtyard configurations common to those cities. A potential owner is offered the option of either having the Full Front Facade House or a Side Yard House. The Full Front Facade Houses shall sit 5 feet off the designated side property line and are allowed windows on this side elevation, while the Side Yard Houses shall sit on the designated zero lot line with no windows allowed on that side (See section on Windows for exception.) The advantage of the Full Front Facade House is that by the use of windows on the side elevations, there are more bedroom possibilities on the first floor. The advantage of the Side Yard House is that it gives the owner more privacy through the use of a courtyard configuration. Side Yard Houses were an urban form of housing typically arranged on long narrow lots with a format face to the street and a courtyard serving as the focal point for all the main rooms of the residences. Architectural styles appropriate to the neighborhood are the French influenced homes of New Orleans, and Georgian, Adam, Federal, Greek Revival, and Italianate found in Charleston and Savannah. No dwelling shall have a maximum or minimum square footage requirements. The emphasis is on the architecture, landscaping, and quality craftsmanship. In order to provide the individual residents with the fife style conveyed above, the Association feels it is necessary to a set of standards in order to maintain the desired effect. All potential residents will be required to these standards. Potential residents must present to the Architectural Review Committee a schematic site plan including the sidewalk, driveway and parking pad designs, building plan, elevation, landscape plan, fencing and gate design. The preliminary application should include the identity of each contractor and subcontractor to be engaged for the construction. A fee of $500.00 will be required to handle this review and is due at the time of presenting the plans to the ARC. Notice or approval concerning this review process will be in writing. No additions or alterations shall be made to a submitted and approved plan without official notification to the ARC. An additional fee will be charged based on the degree of change from the original review document, but at no time will it exceed $100.00. The ARC has the right to enjoin any construction not in conformance with the approved plans and specifications. Any variance in design shall be considered as unique and will not be establishing precedence for future construction. The ARC has the right to adjust or revise these standards. Construction will be required to commence within six months of plan and specification approval. If it does not, then the application must be resubmitted. Once construction is commenced, it shall be completed in a reasonable time. All residents, in areas that have designated zero lot lines shall be aware that a Temporary Construction Easement exists along the resident's property line that is concurrent with their neighbors designated zero lot line, The purpose of the easement is to allow their neighbors the right to utilize the minimum amount of the resident's property as will be needed for the construction of their homes and fencing or repairing the same. The extent of this easement is strictly limited to the minimum area necessary to safely complete the construction or repair, but in no event shall it exceed 10 feet without the owned s consent. Use of this easement will be carefully coordinated between the two parties and will be done with the minimum amount of inconvenience to the party on whose property the easement is located. All activities occurring within the easement are to be done in as expeditious a manner as possible and both parties are wise to agree upon a reasonable time frame. Both parties should decide on each individual's range of responsibilities prior to any work commencing in the easement, unless otherwise noted in this document. Other sections of this document make reference to this easement and must be reviewed (See Landscaping, Garden Walls, Fences and Gates, Roofs and Gutters). No resident shall attach any vegetation or structure to his neighbor's home without his neighbor's approval. Any vegetation allowed shall be properly maintained so as to cause no adverse impact to the house. It is not the intent of this document to police or regulate any item other than the basic design concepts illustrated. It is the responsibility of the building owner and his architect or contractor to make sure that all construction is done according to all local, state, and national building codes and to guarantee the integrity of all building systems. DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION STANDARDS ELEVATION: All first-floor elevations (floor heights) should be between 24" and 30" above the finish grade. UTILITIES No water pipe, sewer pipe, gas pipe, drainage pipe electric wire, permanent telephone cable, permanent television cable, or similar service line shall be installed or maintained on any lot above the surface of the ground. Homes with alley access should have all utilities at the rear of the residence. In no case, should utilities be in the neighbor's courtyard or yard. EXTERIOR BUILDING WALLS: 1. All first- floor stud plate heights should accommodate at a minimum a 10' high ceiling and all full second floor stud plate heights should accommodate at a minimum a 9" high ceiling. Any deviations from the above will be considered when deemed appropriate to the design intent. BUILDING MATERIALS: 1. The following building materials are permitted: a. Brick masonry. The brick shall be of a type that replicates a historical unit such as "old brick". b. Stucco or Cement Plaster. c. An Exterior Insulation and Finish System. d. Wood or an approved Simulated Wood System in a bevel siding contour, such as Hardy Board. Material may be used on side or rear of structure. e. High grade vinyl may be used as trim on the structure. 2. All materials (manufacturers), finishes, textures and colors specified must be submitted as part of the approval process, including brick, stucco, doors, shutters, garage doors, and trim. WINDOWS AND DOORS: 1. The following are permitted: a. Windows are to be painted or stained wood or clad. b. Doors are to be painted or stained wood, clad or painted metal. c. Transoms and circle head windows are allowed. d. Windows shall be single-hung, double-hung, triple-hung or casements at all front, rear, or courtyard elevations of the house. e. No windows of any kind will be allowed in houses along the zero-lot line except for bathroom windows at a height of 7'. ROOFS 1. The following roofs are permitted: a. Composite Fiberglass Shingle Product, Wood (fire rated cedar shakes only) Slate. b. Copper, Galbanum, or a comparable metal roofing product. c. Modified Bitumen may be used on low slope (minimum of 1/4 & 12) veranda roofs that cannot be seen from the street. d. Roof slopes are to be at least 8 & 12 pitch on main roofs and 4 & 12 on lower level veranda roofs or low sloped when in compliance with item c of the above. GUTTERS 1. Gutters and downspouts are required on all primary structures. a. Special coordination with neighbors shall be given to the control of roof runoff on his neighbor's property located on the zero-lot line side of the house. b. Each residence shall allow his neighbor the right to discharge water from roof downspouts into an underground drainage system which shall be provided by the contractor. BALCONIES, VERANDAS, AND PORCHES 1. Veranda piers and aprons may be of brick masonry, wood, or a plaster or simulated plaster product. 2. Veranda top surfaces may be of brick masonry, wood, or a tile product. 3. Columns shall be wood, plaster, decorative metal, brick masonry, or an approved simulated product. 4. Balustrades shall be of wood, stone, or decorative metal or an approved simulated product GAS LIGHTS 1. All residences shall have one or more gas lanterns at the front entry which should remain lighted at all times. Gas lights should be at least 18" tall. CONCRETE SIDEWALKS AND DRIVEWAYS Sidewalks 1. All residents are required to construct on their property from side property line to side property line a concrete sidewalk which meets the requirements of the city of Monroe and shall be outlined with brick. 2. These sidewalks are to have a depth of 4" concrete having a 28 day strength of 3,000 psi, to contain 6x6x10 Ga. W.W.M., and be lightly broom finished. 3. The side walk is to have an expansion joint of 1" x 4" redwood or any approved commercial filler product at the intersection of his sidewalk with the neighboring sidewalk and is to provide the same expansion joint a maximum of every 12 ft. along the walk. 4. The walk will also have a tooled weak-plane joint in the fresh concrete every 4 ft. along the walk. such joints should be coordinated with neighboring walks. 5. Each property will have an entry walk with the same concrete requirements as the sidewalks. Residents are encouraged to upscale entry walks by outlining the concrete with brick pavers or a surface of brick pavers. 6. Sidewalks must be constructed at the time of construction of the residence. Driveways 1. All residents are required to construct on their property a concrete drive with the same specifications as the sidewalks and have expansion joints roughly every 400 sq. ft. 2. The driveway and garage locations for each lot have been coordinated with other lots to insure compatibility. Some lots may allow a choice of two different placement locations or placement within a certain zone while others offer no alternative to the selected location. 3. Parking pads, if approved by the ARC, must be attractive, GARDEN WALLS, FENCES, AND GATES 1. The following are permitted: a. Solid brick masonry walls. b. Brick masonry piers with decorative iron or wood inserts. c. Stucco or cement plaster as solid walls or as piers with decorative iron or wood inserts. 2. Gates are to be either decorative iron or wood. 3. No chain link fences, except for dog kennels which are not seen from the street. 4. No vinyl fences. 5. Residents not having a neighboring house adjoining his courtyard at the time of his construction may choose to construct fencing along the neighboring zero lot line property line in order to secure a level of privacy. The design and specifications of the fence are subject to the review process. The resident should be aware that the nature of this fence would be such that it is subject to removal upon the construction of the neighbor's house. The neighbor shall bear the cost of removing the resident's fencing at the time of construction. LANDSCAPING l. The following are required: a. A minimum of 2 trees will be planted in front of each residence. The trees shall have a minimum height of eight (8) feet and a caliper of not less than 2 h " at the time of planting. Trees should be native to the South. b. Landscape beds should extend a minimum of 4 ft. from the front of the residence. Plantings should consist of a combination of ground covers, shrubs, perennials, and annuals as well as durable nonliving materials such as brick, stone, or pavers. Eighty percent of the material should be living. Grasses and ground covers alone do not meet the requirements for landscaping. c. All other front yard areas should have lawn grass. d. The property owner shall be responsible for the watering and maintaining of all installed landscaping in a healthy, neat, and orderly condition, replacing plants and trees when necessary, keeping the area free of refuse and debris. Tree limbs and other planting shall be maintained so as not to create an obstruction to a driver's visibility and/or pedestrian movement. e. All residents by acceptance of a deed acknowledge and agree that there exists along the side property line, adjacent to their courtyard/driveway, a temporary construction easement. The purpose of this easement is to allow the neighbor to construct or make repairs as needed to their home or fencing along the zero-lot line. The resident will be responsible for landscaping in the area that may be damaged during the construction of his neighbors' home. Any resident requiring to do repair work to his home or fencing on his zero-lot line will coordinate this work with his neighbor on whose property the easement is located. Both should determine each individual's responsibility before the repair process begins. ACCESSORY STRUCTURES 1. The following are permitted: a. Materials found on outbuildings shall be limited to those found on the primary structure or to those that are complementary to the structure. b. All postal mailboxes shall be the style selected for the neighborhood and may be on a single pedestal or two boxes on a single pedestal. Placement of the box shall be a part of the ARC review process. c. Items allowed but subject to review specifically include, but are not limited to, the installation of antennas, satellite dishes or receivers, solar panels, fountains, swimming pools and any items placed outside the front walls of the structure. d. Green houses for private use shall be of similar construction and style of the primary residence unless it abuts the back of the garage and cannot be seen from the street or neighboring lawns. e. All garages are required to have doors. f. Mother-in-law apartments are allowed and may be metered separately for utilities if the owner prefers. These units are to be located above garages or as separate entities to be reviewed as part of the review process. 2. The following are not allowed: a. Residential trailers, prefabricated houses and modular homes will not be permitted. b. No antenna shall exceed the height of the roof of the primary residence. c. No antenna, satellite dish, receiver, or solar panels shall be visible from the street that the house fronts. d. No garage roof should exceed the height of the roof of the primary structure unless the ARC grants a special exception and it would be granted solely on architectural merit. REQUIREMENTS FOR BUILDERS IN LOUISIANNE As a builder in the community of Louisianne, we know that you aspire to be a good neighbor while you are in our neighborhood. In that spirit of cooperation these are the rules that are expected to be followed. 1. All construction within the property shall be surrounded by temporary or permanent fencing to limit visibility, to provide a safety barrier for the owners, guests, and the public. Most important, the purpose of this fencing is to prevent trash from the construction site blowing over the neighborhood. If this does occur, the builder is required to pick up material that blows off site. 2. All construction sites are to be cleared of debris and all debris shall be discarded prior to the end of each work day. In the event the Owner, contractor, or sub-contractors fail to maintain the construction site as required and the failure continues for at least seven days following delivery of written notice from the Association, the Association shall have the right to remove any rubbish or debris from the Lot. The cost of removal of debris shall be charged to the Owner with 12% interest and will become a lien on the Lot. 3. All materials stored on site must be kept in a neat and orderly fashion. 4. Each site must provide a temporary bathroom facility. 5. Completion of construction on a project, once started, must be diligently pursued and completed within a reasonable time. 6. All contractors, sub-contractors, and delivery trucks are expected to be careful of the various utility boxes within Louisianne. If damage is done on or near your construction site, the builder will be responsible for the repair costs. 7. Contractors should remind all workers or sub-contractors that this is a neighborhood and they should drive slowly and be respectful of the area. Section Two Restrictions 1. Residential Use -All residences shall be used as single-family, private residential dwellings and for no other purpose. No residence may be leased for use as a dwelling by someone other than the Owner for an initial term of less than one year. In case the residence is leased, the Owner shall be responsible for informing the Property Manager as to whom the property is leased and which party is to be responsible for payment of annual dues. Residents living in leased property are expected to abide by the covenant rules and regulations. 2. Residence Safety- When a resident plans to be away from home for an extended time, longer than a week, he should notify the Property Manager. In case of an emergency, the Property Manager can be notified by the authorities and in turn notify the Owner. 3. Home Business - No business, trade, including garage sales, flea markets or other similar activities, shall be conducted from residences. The exception would be estate sates with approval from the Board of Directors. 4. Garages— Each single-family residence shall have sufficient enclosed garage space for at least two traditionally sized automobiles and must have side or rear entry. Garages must be finished inside and have doors equipped with automatic garage door openers. All garage doors shall be kept in a closed position at all times except during active use or entry and exit of vehicles. During periods of excessive heat, doors may be partially raised during the day. 5. Owners Vehicles — Owner’s vehicles are to be parked in enclosed garages or on the driveway within the property. In no event are owner’s vehicles to be parked on the street, parking pads, or the common property as a permanent solution. 6. Guest Vehicles -Vehicles of guest’s may be parked at the curbside or on parking pads temporarily. Trucks of repairmen, delivery men, moving vans may be parked at curbside temporarily. In no event shall any vehicles be allowed to block traffic flow. Neither should guest’s vehicles be parked on the common property. 7. Miscellaneous Vehicles -No commercial vehicles, boats, trailers, buses, house trailers, motor homes, camping trailers, motorcycles, motor scooters, go-carts, motorbikes or other similar vehicles, whether of a recreational nature or otherwise, shall be placed, parked or stored on any Lot or street. Motorcycles or similar smaller vehicles may be kept in the enclosed garage. No wrecked, junk vehicle, or inoperative vehicle shall be kept in the neighborhood. The Association shall have the right to authorize the towing of any vehicle which is in violation of these provisions and to collect the cost from the Owners as an Individual Assessment. 8. Oversize Garages -No garage shall be built for the storage of a motor home or any other vehicle that would require an unusually large or excessively tall structure. 9. Accessory Buildings- No accessory buildings of any kind will be allowed on any property without approval by the ARC, 10- Gardens and Landscaping - gardens and landscaping should be kept in an attractive manner. Trees and shrubs should be replaced as needed. The beautiful crepe myrtle trees in the neighborhood should never be mutilated by cutting off the limbs and trunks. 11. Signs- Except for Community identification signs, entrance signs, directional signs, traffic or safety signs, no signs or advertising devices of any character shall be erected, posted, or displayed upon, in or about any Lot/Residence. Real estate signs, not to exceed 2 square feet, may be placed on property that is for sale. 12. Garbage Cans- Trash and garbage containers shall not be permitted to remain in public view except on days of trash collection. Containers used for the storage of garbage or trash should be kept in clean, sanitary condition. All refuse including lawn and landscape debris must be properly bagged and contained for trash collection as to the standards of the City of Monroe 13. Clotheslines- No clotheslines or outside drying area shall be located on any Lot. 14. Animals- No animals, livestock, or poultry of any kind shall be raised, bred or kept on any Lot or on the common areas. However, dogs, cats, and other common household pets may be kept so long as they are not kept, bred, or maintained for commercial purposes, and provided that such domestic pets are not a source of annoyance or nuisance to the other Owners. No animals shall be permitted within or on any common areas and community facilities unless accompanied by their owner and unless the animals are leashed or carried. Owners who walk their dogs are to pick up after their pets and take the waste home for disposal. 15. Nuisances-No Owner or his guests shall knowingly or willfully make, create, or allow to continue any unnecessary, excessive or offensive disturbance which destroys the peace, quiet, or comfort of the neighbors. 16. Temporary Easement- All residents by acceptance of a deed acknowledge and agree that there exists along the side property line, a temporary construction easement. The purpose of this easement is to allow the neighbor to construct, repair, or do normal maintenance as needed to their home on the zero-lot line side. Any resident requiring to do such work will coordinate with his neighbor on whose property the easement is located. Both should determine each individual's responsibility before the work begins. The resident using the temporary easement will be responsible for any damage which might occur to the Owners' property during the process of construction, repair, or maintenance. Section Three Maintenance of Property 1, The owner is responsible for all maintenance and repair of his Lot/ Residence and any improvement to his Lot. If the residence is damaged by casualty, the Owner must immediately clear the site of casualty. If reconstructed, the reconstruction must be substantially in accordance with the original plans and specifications of the residence. If not, then plans must be approved by the Architectural Review Committee. All Lots/Residences shall be kept in a clean, neat, and sanitary condition and no rubbish, refuse or garbage shall be allowed to accumulate or any fire hazard to exist. All Lots/ Residences shall be maintained by the Owners in a manner required by the Association. Landscaping is to be maintained as described in Section One, page 5 of this covenant. In the event an Owner fails to maintain his Lot as required, the Association shall have the right to mow, trim, clear any weeds, grass, unsightly debris, to trim or remove overgrown shrubs or trees, to add plants and mulch on any Lot deemed by the Association to be a health menace, fire hazard, or a detraction from the aesthetic appearance of Louisianne Neighborhood. If an Owner fails to maintain his property, written notice shall be given detailing the corrections to be made. If the needed work is not done within seven days, the Association will make the needed improvements. The cost of the work plus 12% interest will be charged to the Owner and shall become a lien on the property. (See Addendum 1 for Notice regarding Maintenance of Yard and Property) The exterior of a house shall be kept neat, clean, and attractive, with no damages lingering to open view, including roof or exterior surfaces, painted surfaces, facade, shutters, gutters, exterior lighting, and sidewalks. No permanent use or extended use of mascots, sculptures, busts, caricature-type statues or animals, etc. in yards or porches and areas open to view as deemed by the Board as unsightly or not representative of the ambiance expected in our neighborhood. Those types of items should be placed in your courtyard or patio, not in public view. 2. Association Responsibilities —The Association shall be responsible for the maintenance of all Common Property. 3. Individual Assessment — Any Owner, family member, or guest of the Owner who causes damage to any Common Property or any property maintained by the Association, shall be solely responsible for the cost of property repair. No owner has the right to repair, alter, add to, replace, paint, or in any other way maintain the Common Property, or any other property to be maintained by the Association. 4. Architectural Review Committee — All external repairs, replacements, or renovations which are to be made by an Owner pursuant to the provisions set forth herein, shall be subject to the approval of the Architectural Review Committee. Section Four Easements The following easements are reserved over, across, and through the Property. 1. Utilities — Easements for the installation and maintenance of utilities are reserved for public and private utilities across the front, side and real Lot line of each Lot, as shown on the recorded subdivision plats of the Property for the present and future utility services to Louisianne, including, but not limited to , water lines, sanitary sewer lines, storm drainage culverts, sprinkler lines, natural gas lines, electrical wire, television wires, telephone cables, irrigation lines, security wires, street lights, communication lines, communication devices, and other services. The easement shall run along the entire length of each front, rear and side lot line as shown on each recorded plat. 2. Drainage — Easements for the installation and maintenance of drainage facilities are reserved as shown on the recorded subdivision plats of the Property, to run along the entire length of each front, rear and side Lot line of Lots as shown on the recorded plats. 3. Within these easement areas, no structure, planting, or other material other than sod, which may interfere with the installation and maintenance of utility facilities or operation and maintenance of the Surface Water management System, shall be placed or permitted to remain unless such structure, planting, or other material was installed by the Declarant or approved by the A.R.C. Section Five Common Property 1. The Common Property refers to all portions of the property which are intended for the common use and enjoyment of the Owners and which are identified and dedicated to the Association on any recorded subdivision plats of the Property. This includes the Gazebo and the Park. 2. The Common Property is intended for the use and enjoyment of the Owners and their guests. The Common Properties are not public areas and no rights of the general public are intended to be created. 3. The Association shall be responsible for the management, maintenance, operation, and repair of the Common Property and for the payment of all property taxes and other assessments which are levied against the Common Property. 4. Specifically, the property the Association shall maintain and be responsible for shall include the following: a. Structures- including the Gatehouse and Gazebo. b. Wails - all perimeter brick walls for which the Association holds an easement for construction and maintenance. c. Landscaping- all landscaping of the Common Property including all sodding, irrigation, and the planting of annuals and care of trees and shrubbery. 5. The Association may hire employees as needed to maintain the Common Property. The costs of such maintenance will be billed to and paid by the Association. 6. The Association, through its Board of Directors, shall regulate the use of the Common Property by its members and Owners and may from time to time promulgate such rules and regulations based on the best interests of the Owners. Section Six Louisianne Property Owners Association 1. Formation — The Association was formed by the filing of the Articles of Incorporation with the office of the Secretary of State of Louisiana. The Association was formed to operate, maintain the Common Property, to enforce the covenants, conditions, restrictions, and other provisions set forth in this Declaration, and for the enforcement of the rules and regulations promulgated by the Association. The Association shall have other specified rights, obligations, duties, and functions as are set forth in this Declaration and in the Articles of Incorporation and the By-Laws of the Association. The Association shall be the entity for the execution, performance, administration, and enforcement of all terms and conditions of this Declaration. 2. Membership - Each owner of a lot, upon his acquisition of the lot, shall automatically become a Member of the Association and shall remain a member for so long as such owner remains the owner of the lot. Such membership shall be mandatory and may not be terminated by any owner. 3. Voting — The right and privileges of membership, including the right to vote and to hold office in the Association, may be exercised by a member, a member’s spouse or by proxy, but in no event shall more than one vote be cast for each lot. When more than one person holds an interest in any lot, the vote for such lot shall be exercised as those owners themselves determine. They shall advise the Property Manager in writing prior to the meeting who will be voting 4. Administration of the Association — The affairs of the Association shall be administered by the Board of Directors in accordance with this Declaration, the Articles of Incorporation, and the By-Laws of the Association. The Articles of Incorporation and the By-Laws may be amended in the manner set forth there-in provided that no amendment, alteration or rescission may be made which affects the right or privileges of any Institutional Mortgagee, without the express prior written consent of the Institutional Mortgagee so affected. Any attempt to amend contrary to these prohibitions shall be of no force or effect. 5. Suspension of Membership Rights - No member shall have any vested right, interest or privilege in or to the assets, functions, affairs or franchises of the Association, or any right, interest, privilege which may be transferable, or which shall continue after the Member’s membership in the Association ceases, or while the member is not in good standing. A Member shall be considered "not in good standing” during any period of time in which the Member is delinquent in the payment of any dues/ assessment, or in violation of any provision of the Declaration, any rules or regulations promulgated by the Association, or the Traffic Regulations. All such determinations shall be made by a majority of the Board of Directors. While not in good standing, the Member shall not be entitled to vote or exercise any right or privilege of membership in the Association. 6. Sale of Residence or Lot by the Owner— The Property Manager or the Board of Directors is to be notified upon the sale of a residence or lot with the name of the new owner. This will allow the Association to greet the and ensure that they receive a copy of the Covenants and Restrictions. Section Seven Assessments 1. Creation of Assessments — There are hereby created assessments for Association expenses as the Board may specifically authorize from time to time. There shall be four (4) types of assessments: (a) General Assessments to fund expenses of the Association; (b)Community Assessments for expenses benefiting only lots within a particular community; (c) Special Assessments as described in number four of this section; (d) Specific Assessments as described in number five of this section. Each owner, by accepting a deed or entering into a contract of sale for any portion of the Properties, is deemed to covenant and agree to pay these assessments. All assessments and fees, together with interest, late fees, costs of collection, and reasonable Attorneys' fees, shall be a charge and continuing lien upon each Lot/ Residence against which the assessment is made until paid, as more particularly provided herein. Each such assessment, together with interest, late charges, costs, and reasonable attorneys' fees, also shall be the personal obligation of the Person who was the owner of the Lot/Residence at the time the assessment arose. Upon a transfer of title to a Lot/Residence, the grantee shall be jointly and severally liable for any assessments and other charges due at the time of conveyance. The Association shall, upon written request, furnish to any Owner liable for any type of assessment a written statement signed by an Association president, setting forth whether such assessment has been paid. Such statement shall be conclusive evidence of payment. The Association may require the advance payment of a reasonable processing fee for the issuance of such statement. Assessments shall be paid in such manner and on such dates as the Board may establish, which may include discounts for early payment or similar time/price differentials. The Board may require advance payment of assessments at closing of the transfer of title to a Lot/Residence and impose special requirements for Owners with a history of delinquent payment. if the Board so elects, assessments may be paid in two or more installments. Unless the Board otherwise provides, the General Assessment and any Community Assessment shall be due and payable in advance on the first day of each fiscal year. If any Owner is delinquent in paying any assessments or other charges on his Lot/Residence, the Board may require any unpaid installments of all outstanding assessments to be paid in full immediately. Any assessment or installment thereof shall be considered delinquent on the 15 th day following the due date unless otherwise specified by Board resolution. No Owner shall exempt himself from liability for assessments by non-use of Common Area, abandonment of his Lot/Residence, or by any other means. The obligation to pay assessments is a separate and independent covenant on the part of each Owner. No diminution or abatement of assessments or set-off shall be claimed or allowed for any alleged failure of the Association or Board to take some action or perform some function required of it, or for inconvenience or discomfort arising from the making of repairs or improvements, or from any other action it takes. 2. Computation of General Assessment- At least thirty (30) days before the beginning of each fiscal year, the Board shall prepare a budget covering the estimated expenses of the Association during the coming year including a capital contribution to establish a reserve fund in accordance with a budget separately prepared as provided herein. General Assessments shall be levied equally against ail Lots/Residences subject to assessment and shall be set at a level which is reasonably expected to produce total income for the Association equal to the total budgeted expenses of the Association, reserves. In determining total funds to be generated through the levy of General Assessments, the Board, in its discretion, may consider other sources of funds available to the Association, including any surplus from prior years. General Assessment shall commence immediately upon the purchase of a Lot/Residence. The Board shall present a copy of the budget and notice of the amount of the General Assessment for the following year to each Owner at the annual homeowners meeting. Such budget shall become effective unless disapproved by at least 51% of the total votes in the Association. There shall be no obligation to call a meeting for the purpose of considering the budget, except on petition of the owners as provided for special meetings in the By-Laws. if a meeting is required, assessments pursuant to such proposed budget shall not become effective until after such meeting is held, provided such assessments shall be retroactive to the original effective date of the budget if the budget is not disapproved at the meeting. If the proposed budget is disapproved or the Board fails for any reason to determine the budget for any year, then until such time as a budget is determined, the budget in effect for the immediately preceding year shall continue for the current year. The revised budget shall become effective unless disapproved in accordance with the above procedure. 3. Reserve Budget and Capital Contribution — The Board shall annually prepare reserve budgets which take into account the number and nature of replaceable assets within the Development, the expected life of each asset, and the expected repair or replacement cost. The Board shall set the required capital contribution in an amount sufficient to permit meeting the projected needs of the Association, as shown on the budget, with respect both to amount and timing by annual General Assessments, as appropriate, over the budget period. 4. Special Assessments – In addition to other authorized assessments, the Association may levy Special Assessments from time to time to cover unbudgeted expenses or expenses in excess of those budgeted. Any such Special Assessment may be levied against the entire membership, if such Special Assessment is for expenses of the Association or against the Lots/Residences within any Community if such Special Assessment is for Community expenses. Special Assessments shall be allocated equally on all Lots/Residences subject to such Special Assessments. Any Special Assessment shall become effective unless disapproved at a meeting by Owners representing at least fifty-one percent of all Owners which will be subject to such Special Assessment. There shall be no obligation to call a meeting for the purpose of considering any Special Assessment except on petition of 25% of the Owners, which petition must be presented to the Board within 20 days after delivery of the notice of Special Assessments. Special Assessments shall be payable in such manner and at such times as determined by the Board, and may be payable in installments extending beyond the fiscal year in which the Special Assessment is approved. 5. Specific Assessments— The Association shall have the power to levy Specific Assessments against a particular Lot/Residence as follows: a. to cover the costs, including overhead and administrative costs, of providing benefits, items or services to the Lots/Residences or occupants thereof upon request of the Owner pursuant to a menu of special services which the Board may from time to time authorize to be offered to Owners which might include, without limitation, landscape maintenance, janitorial service, pest control; etc., which assessments may be levied in advance of the provision of the requested benefit, item, or service as a deposit against charges to be incurred by the Owner. b. to cover costs incurred bringing the Lot/Residence into compliance with the terms of this Declaration, the By-Laws; or costs incurred as a consequence of the conduct of the or occupants of the Lot/Residence, their agents, contractors, employees, licensees, invitees or guests; provided however, the Board shall give the Lot/Residence Owner prior written notice and an opportunity for a hearing before levying any Specific Assessment under this subsection. The Association may also levy a Specific Assessment against the Lots/Residences within any Community to reimburse the Association for costs incurred in bringing the Community into compliance with the provisions of the Declaration, the By-Laws and rules; provided however, the Board shall give prior written notice to the Owners for Lots/Residences in the Community and an opportunity for such Owners to be heard before levying any such assessment. 6. Remedies for Non-Payment of Assessments —Any Assessments or other charges which are not paid when due shall be delinquent. Delinquent assessments shall bear interest from the due date at the rate established by the Board of Directors of the Association, or if not set by the Board, at the highest rate allowed by law, together with such late fee as set by the Board. The Association may file a lien of record against any Lot/Residence where there remains an assessment unpaid for a period of thirty days or longer. Said lien shall be filed in the land records of Ouachita Parish in a manner provided by law. Such lien shall be superior to all other liens, except the liens of all taxes, bonds, assessments and other levies which by law would be superior. Additionally, the Association may, at its option, sue and obtain a personal judgment against an Owner who has not paid any assessments made hereafter for the sums due and owing the Association in a court of competent jurisdiction. Election by the Association of any one of the above remedies shall not preclude or in any way limit, the Association's rights to utilize any other remedy available to the Association hereunder or in equity or at law. Costs and reasonable attorneys' fees for the prosecution of any such action shall be added to the amount due. In the event of such action at law and in the further event that such action results in a judgment being entered against the Owner and in favor of the Association, then, and in that event, the Association shall collect on such judgment in such manner and to the extent provided and permitted by the laws of the State of Louisiana. This Declaration shall constitute notice to all parties, including, but limited to, any holder of a Mortgage which encumbers a Lot/Residence, that any Association's lien shall have priority over. any Mortgage creating a lien against a Lot/Residence after the date of this Declaration. Any foreclosure of a Mortgage shall be subject to any existing or thereafter filed liens filed by the Association. Additionally, in the event that a determination is made by a Court of competent jurisdiction that any Association lien is made subordinate to the lien of any Mortgage, and that such Association lien is extinguished by the fact of a foreclosure of such Mortgage, the Association shall have the right to re-assess and re-levy a Special Assessment in the amount of the original extinguished Association lien after such foreclosure of such Mortgage. The Association's lien may be foreclosed in like manner as provided by law. All fees, charges, late charges, fines, and interest are enforceable as assessments. In any foreclosure action brought, the Association shall be deemed to be the holder and owner of the obligation secured by this Declaration. The registered agent of the Association shall be the trustee for all purposes of the foreclosure proceeding, and the Association shall have the power to appoint a substitute trustee if for any reason the Association desires to replace the trustee, and the substitute trustee shall succeed to all rights, powers, and duties thereof. The Association shall request of the trustees to sell the Lot/Residence subject to the lien at public auction for cash, after having first given such notice and advertising the time and place of such sale in such manner as may then be provided by law for mortgages, and upon such sale and upon compliance with the law then relating to foreclosure proceedings under power of sale to convey to the purchaser in as full and ample manner as authorized by the Louisiana Code of Civil Procedure, as amended. The trustee shall be authorized to retain an attorney to represent such trustee in such proceedings. The proceeds of the sale shall, after the trustee retains its commission, together with any additional attorneys' fees incurred by the trustee, be applied to the costs of the sale, including but not limited to, costs of collection, taxes, assessments, costs of recording, service fees, and incidental expenditures, the amount due on any note secured by the Lot/Residence, and any advancements made by the Association in the protection of the security. The Association may bid for the Lot/Residence at the foreclosure sale and acquire, hold, lease, mortgage, and convey the Lot/Residence. While a Lot is owned by the Association following foreclosure: (a) no right to vote shall be exercised on its behalf; and (b) no assessment shall be levied on it. The Association may sue for unpaid assessments and other charges authorized without foreclosing or waiving the lien securing same. The sale or transfer of any Lot/Residence shall not affect the assessment lien or relieve such Lot/Residence from the lien for any subsequent assessments. However, the sale or transfer of any Lot/Residence pursuant to foreclosure of the first Mortgage shall extinguish the lien as to any Installments of such assessments due prior to such sale or transfer. A Mortgagee or other purchaser of a Lot/Residence who obtains title pursuant to foreclosure of the Mortgage shall not be personally liable for assessments on such Lot/Residence due prior to such acquisition of title. 7. Date of Commencement of Assessments — The obligation to pay assessments shall accrue as to each Lot/Residence on the date that such Lot/Residence is conveyed to a Person. 8. Failure to Assess — Failure of the Board to fix assessment amounts or rates or to deliver or mail each Owner an assessment notice shall not be deemed a waiver, modification, or a release of any Owner from the obligation to pay assessments. In such event, each Owner shall continue to pay General Assessments and Community Assessments on the same basis as during the last year for which an assessment was made until a new assessment is levied at which time the Association may retroactively assess any shortfalls in collections. 9. Exempt Property The following property shall be exempt from payment of all Assessments: All common areas owned by the Association for the enjoyment and use of its members. Any property dedicated to any governmental authority or public utility. 10. Capitalization of Association — Acquisition of record title to a Lot/Residence by the Owner, a contribution shall be made by or on behalf of the purchaser to the working capital of the Association in an amount equal to one-fourth (1/4) of the annual General Assessment per Lot/ Residence for that year. This amount shall be in addition to the annual General Assessment. This amount shall be collected at the closing of the purchase and sale of the Lot/Residence for use in covering operating expenses and other expenses incurred by the Association. click here to continue to page 2 of this document…….
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