Would Re-Painting the Entire House be Considered Maintenance or an Improvement?

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I am a member of an HOA. We recently approved a new choice of paint colors. An owner wishes to paint his house the same color as it is currently. That color is no longer on the approved list of colors. Homeowners have to apply for permission to make an improvement, but are not required to seek permission for maintenance. Would re-painting the entire house be considered maintenance or an improvement? Thank you.

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That’s a great question. Out of context, I would say that repainting is difficult to categorize as between maintenance and improvement, since it is a little of both. Depending on which side you’re on, you can make a good argument. However, if your HOA has an approved color list, that alone is good evidence that there was an intention that the HOA should have control over what colors people paint their houses. Unless there is something else in the HOA documents that cuts the other way, I’d lean toward assuming that you need to pick one of the approved colors.



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Author: House Attorney