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NY Condo Association Insurance: Setting Decorating Guidelines

NY Condo Association Insurance: Setting Decorating Guidelines  With the holiday season rapidly approaching, it might be time for condo associations to review their holiday decorating guidelines. While some guidance is necessary to prevent community safety and fire hazards, it is important to find a balance between beneficial to the community and being a holiday humbug. Here are a few tips borrowed from HOAleader.com, a resource for community association management and members, to help condo association boards maintain their holiday spirit and community standards. Be reasonable- One of the key elements of successful association management is to maintain an atmosphere of practicality and fairness. If your association is considering, or already has holiday decorating regulations in place it is important to afford homeowners as much freedom as safely and efficiently possible. The goal should not simply be to regulate but to better the community through those guidelines. For example, if your goal is to make sure holiday lighting is safe and tactful, an outright ban is probably going a little over the top. A more direct solution to the lighting dilemma is to restrict the timing and size of holiday lighting displays. For example door decorations might be prohibited in every month except December. Allowing this exception to the typical rule does not mean that an association cannot restrict the type of door adornments. An association may choose to restrict door decorations to a simple wreath during the month of December. Regulate the extremes – According to experts, moderation is the primary goal of regulation.  Some of the most effective holiday decorating policies attempt to temper the overzealous displays of holiday spirit with guidelines which will alleviate tension between community members. An association might wish to set holiday decorating time constraints which require that decorations be put up and taken down in a specific time frame. Commonly, condo associations will allow decorations to surface 30 days prior and as long as two weeks after a holiday.  Many policies often include restrictions on the scope of the display for example specifying the footage and location of decorative lighting. Reserve your rights- It might be hard to identify just what “over-the-top” means until it surfaces, that is what makes reserving the association’s rights to enforce and regulate holiday displays and decorations so essential. Condo associations should remind homeowners that under the association rules it is…
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