Speak With Your Homeowners Association Before Beginning Any Remodeling

Many homeowners mistakenly believe that they have the freedom to remodel their property as they see fit. Unfortunately, you don’t have as much flexibility as you may think. Most homeowners are under the jurisdiction of a homeowners association, which means that they will need to check their bylaws and are usually required to receive permission before doing any remodeling.

The Importance of Consulting Your Homeowners Association Before Remodeling

Homeowners associationshomeowners-association typically require members to receive prior approval before beginning any remodeling or new construction. They may be forced to pay a fee if the policies are violated.

Homeowners associations are often very strict about enforcing their policies. In 2009, a homeowner tried to have a lot of electrical, plumbing and cabinetry work done without seeking approval from the homeowners association. According to statements from the Ohio 8th District Court of Appeals, the homeowner didn’t try to receive the necessary permits before starting any work.

The association made repeated efforts to contact him and resolve the issue, but the homeowner wasn’t compliant. They were eventually left with no alterative except to take the member to court. The homeowner was forced to pay over $18,000 to cover the legal fees of the homeowners association after the judge ruled in their favor.

Always Check With Your Homeowners Association Before Remodeling

Policies can vary among homeowners associations, so you will need to read the policies before applying for a permit. Some homeowners associations work directly with their members, while others use a third party company to oversee their policies. You will need to speak with someone for further details if you have any questions.

What should you expect when applying for a construction permit from your homeowners association? It will depend on the management, because some organizations are more flexible than others. However, here are some of the things that you may need to be prepared for:

  • Many homeowners associations have material and color requirements that property owners must abide by.
  • You don’t typically need to outline your plans in as much detail for smaller remodeling projects that don’t require any major construction or electrical work. However, other projects will usually require architectural plans and contractor agreements before work can begin.
  • You will be required to adhere to a number of rules to ensure the contractors don’t create any inconvenience or safety concerns for other residents.

Some homeowners associations can be annoying to deal with, while others are much more tolerant. However, it will always be much easier to made accommodations ahead of time rather than risk the consequences of working without approval.


Ten Tips for Designing a More Practical Kitchen


1) Make sure that your storage cabinets, microwave oven, cutlery, etc.… are all within arm’s reach. What use is your storage space if you cannot reach it easily? It would only serve to increase the time it takes to cook and prepare food, while being really annoying at the same time. A design where anything and everything is easily accessible is at the heart of practically designed kitchen.

2) One should also consider modern-kitcheneliminating wasted steps that are spent running around looking for cooking utensils. Perhaps once you get to the knives and forks they are easily enough obtained, but a layout where all the cooking can be done with the least amount of steps is a way to prevent mishaps before they happen. For example, let us say you are frying up an onion, but your stove top and countertop are on the opposite sides of the kitchen. If you get too caught up preparing food to be cooked on one side, you may forget that the onions are busy frying and then have to run back and forth when the stove and countertop could have just been placed side by side.

3) The paths and walkways of your kitchen should be accommodating of traffic with enough width to allow people to pass through but without having to interrupt any cooking. The standard should be 36 inches at least for walkways, 42 inches (one cook kitchen) or 48 inches (two cook kitchen) for cooking paths.

4) Plan your kitchen in such a way that all the cabinet doors open easily with nothing in the way to block their swing path.

5) Having an island is often a great addition to a kitchen, but what kind depends on the layout of your kitchen. If you plan to put the oven and or stove in the island make sure you have sufficient space to still keep practicality in your kitchen.  If you plan to eat on the counter top, make sure there is enough space between the cooking area and the dining area.


6) Knives can be stored, on the wall above the cooking space, on a magnetic strip. This area is known as the backsplash. This makes it easier to spot the right knife for the task at hand as well as being out of reach of small children.

RecycleBin4 00037) Make your kitchen recycle friendly by having enough space for recycling bins, such as plastic, glass, tin and even a spare cupboard for paper.

8) Having an extended hose attached to the sink water facet, makes it easy and convenient to fill large pots with water quickly. Because the hose is movable and manageable, it also makes it convenient to quickly rinse or fill whatever is at hand.

9) Place power outlets all along the backsplash of the cooking area and on the island so that there is never a struggle with finding electricity when you need it, where you need it.

10) A very nice addition to any kitchen is a message centre. It can simply be a place for a telephone, important notes, numbers, dates, shopping list, etc…