HOA Quarterly


August 2022 | Issue No.4

Visit Our HOA Resources Webpage

Providing City-Specific Updates and Resources to Laguna Niguel Homeowner's Associations

Save the Date!

HOA Outreach Meeting on Thursday, November 10th

The next HOA Outreach Meeting will be held on Thursday, November 10th, at City Hall. Please stay tuned on topics of discussion and information on how to register.

Orange County Fire Authority - Home Protection

Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA) encourages all residents to take proactive steps that will make their homes safer from the effects of a wildfire. Below are steps you can take today to help protect your home.


- Replace eave and cornice vents with approved baffled vents. Protect all other vents with 1/8" non-combustible mesh. Keep the areas around the vents clear of vegetation.

- Plug openings in open-eave areas with durable caulk. Install a non-combustible covering over blocking to eliminate openings.

- Clear all combustible debris from roof and gutters. Install screens on gutters to reduce the accumulation of combustible debris.

- Maintain the Immediate Zone, the first 5 feet from the structure out. Use hardscape like gravel, pavers, concrete and other noncombustible material in lieu of mulch. Remove dead and dying vegetation, limit plants to low growing (below two feet in height), and limit combustible storage (outdoor furniture, storage planters, etc.).


For more information, please visit the OCFA website at www.ocfa.org/RSG or call (714) 573-6774 to schedule a wildfire home assessment.

Wildfire Home Assessment
Click Here to Learn about the Immediate Zone


Save the Date - HOA Outreach Meeting on Thursday, November 10th

ASK Laguna Niguel!

Orange County Fire Authority - Home Protection

Moulton Niguel Water District - Statewide Drought Emergency: Resilient Together

Save the Date - H2O for HOAs Education Event

The Third Certainty of Life: Maintenance

CAI-OC Symposium and Expo 2022

SHOW ME THE MONEY – How to Pay for Common Area Maintenance and Repairs

ASK Laguna Niguel!

The Publications Team is always looking for new authors and new information to share!

If there is a topic you would like to learn about - OR - if you would like to submit an article, please email 

HOA@cityoflagunaniguel.org. A team member will get connected with you.

Moulton Niguel Water District - Statewide Drought Emergency: Resilient Together

California is in its third consecutive year of drought and the State urges Californians to save more water. We all play an important part to be water efficient.

Below are six simple ways you can save water and money!

1. Upgrade to a "Smart" Weather-based Irrigation Controller

2. Get Cash for Removing Turf

3. Adjust Your Sprinklers

4. Avoid Watering Between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.

5. Get Leak Alerts

6. Install a Water Efficient Drip Irrigation System

Click Here For More Water Saving Tips and Drought Information
Learn More About the H2O for HOAs Program

The Third Certainty of Life: Maintenance

By Caleb Henry, ProTec Building Services

As the author Tom Robbins once said, “There’s birth, there’s death, and in between there’s maintenance.” Any way you slice it, maintenance is imperative to success. The tragic and heartbreaking Champlain Towers South collapse in Florida has reignited the conversation surrounding preventive maintenance, and the strategies communities can implement to prevent such building failures. Though the conversation varies depending on the speaker or writer, there remains one unwavering belief – maintenance plans and programs are paramount.


A plan, in its most basic form, is outlining what you look to achieve and how you intend to achieve it. For a community, this would be equivalent to an HOA maintenance manual, which outlines... to read more click here


This article if reprinted from OC View; copyright by CAI, Orange County Regional Chapter, all rights reserved.

O.C. View July/August Edition
About CAI's Orange County Regional Chapter

SHOW ME THE MONEY – How to Pay for Common Area Maintenance and Repairs

Submitted by: Laurie F. Masotto, Esq.


Community Legal Advisors, Inc.

Representing residential and commercial associations in the counties of Orange, San Diego and Riverside 

Has your community experienced roof leaks which have caused damage to the buildings or interior of homes? Or, maybe it is past time to paint wood and stucco, or repave private streets.  Is it time to cut water expenses by installing drought-tolerant landscaping? Unless your association’s reserve funds are adequate to cover these expenses, how will these items be paid for? A number of funding options should be considered:

The Power to Levy AssessmentsCivil Code Section 5600 (in the Davis Stirling Act) provides that a Board “shall” levy regular and special assessments sufficient to perform its obligations under the governing documents and the law. However, this authority is limited as follows:

  • Raising Regular Assessments. Civil Code Section 5605 allows associations to increase regular assessments up to 20% each year without approval of the members. While this can provide additional income in small increments over time, a monthly assessment increase will generally not provide funds fast enough or in a sufficient amount to get large necessary repair projects (roofs, painting, roads, etc.) done in a prompt manner.

  • Special Assessments. If the cost of the repair/replacement exceeds 5% of your budget, as is the case with most large projects (painting, roofs), a special assessment may be imposed upon obtaining the approval of a majority of a quorum of members. “Quorum” is specifically defined under this law (regardless of what your Bylaws say) as more than 50% of the members. See Civil Code Section 5605c. Owners may be more likely to approve a special assessment for a specific repair for which they will see the physical results (i.e. new roof, new paint). Explain that repairs and/or replacement now will help to avoid future damage and deterioration, preserve and possibly increase property value, and enhance curb appeal without indebting the Association. These factors will assist members who wish to sell or refinance.

  • Notice to Members. Once any increase in regular dues or special assessment is approved, the Association is required to give at least 30 days’ notice of the due date. See Civil Code Section 5615. 


Possible Loan. Check with lenders who are experienced in lending to homeowners associations as to whether a loan can be obtained. Collateral for such these type of loans is typically the right to incoming assessment payments. No lien against the Common Area is necessary. Repayment may be able to be funded by both an increase in regular dues and a special assessment over a period of time, which could be more palatable and affordable to owners. Many governing documents contain restrictions requiring membership approval for loans, so consult legal counsel first.

Is It an Emergency? If a repair arises of which the Board was unaware during budget planning, where a threat to personal safety on the property is discovered (i.e. a dangerous condition), or the Association is ordered by a court to make a repair, the Board may levy an assessment on “emergency” basis without membership approval, regardless of the amount. See Civil Code Section 5610. An emergency does not include a repair which has been known for a while and the Board now wishes to get it done ASAP (i.e. deferred maintenance). A Board resolution must be provided to the membership stating the reasons why such expense was not foreseen.

Government Subsidies/Programs. Often, there are grants or subsidies (energy or water related) available to help fund a repair project.  For instance, the Moulton Niguel Water District has rebate programs offering up to $4 per square foot of turf removal, and has rebates for drip systems and weather-based irrigation controllers. 

Can’t Get the Members to Consent? There is a last resort option if you have necessary maintenance or repairs but are unable to get the required consent of the members: court action.  Corporations Code §7515(a) allows a corporation to file a petition (legal action) in superior court to attempt to obtain approval.

Funding Future Reserves. After a large repair/replacement is achieved, it is not too early to engage in financial planning and start building reserves and bolster your association’s financial condition to be prepared for the next project. Obtain input from professionals (reserve study analyst, accountant, investment consultant).

Further Steps. First consult your association’s attorney to discuss and evaluate all of your options or combination of options, and any restrictions in your governing documents. Educate and inform the owners at a town hall meeting so that members know what to expect. You will be on your way to achieving the work. 

This article was submitted by Laurie F. Masotto, Esq. with Community Legal Advisors, Inc.; all rights reserved.

To receive HOA information and updates, please email HOA@CityOfLagunaNiguel.org with your contact information, HOA name, and position.
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