This case involved a dispute between a homeowner (Owner) and his homeowners association (Association) over Owners right to continue to lease his home following the adoption of an amendment by Association to its Declaration which restricted the ability of the communitys owners to lease their property.
When Owner purchased his home in the community in October of 2000, he was aware of Associations Declaration which, at the time, did not have restrictions on the leasing of homes. In 2004, Owner moved out of the home but retained it as a rental property. He then entered into a 300 month commercial lease agreement with a real estate company that he formed where he was the sole officer and member, and over the next decade he rented his home out to various different tenants through the company.
In 2016, Association proposed amending its Declaration in a manner that included restrictions on renting properties within the community. The amendment was voted in by more than two-thirds of the owners, and Association notified Owner that the new rental restrictions were going to take effect on August 1, 2016. Rather than comply, Owner filed a lawsuit against Association in February 2017 in which he sought a declaratory judgment that the new rental restriction was unenforceable as to him. Both parties moved for summary judgment and the trial court granted summary judgment in favor of Association. Owner then appealed the judgment contending the trial court erred because the amendment did not apply to his vested right to lease his property.
The appellate court found that Owner was aware of the fact that Association had restrictive covenants that were contained in the Declaration when he purchased his property in 2000, and under the applicable law, Associations Declaration could be amended if two-thirds of the homeowners approved of the amendment. Thus, because more than two-thirds of the homeowners in the community voted for the amendment which restricted leasing in the community, from the time of the adoption of the amendment, Owner no longer had an unfettered right to lease his property. Accordingly, the trial courts judgment was affirmed.
Georgia Appellate Court decision (June 13 2019).
See case decision: Pasha_v._Battle_Creek_Homeowners_Ass’n