Laura Caseley in EarthTechling.com reports on an interesting and, for some, troubling problem with deploying renewable energy resources at home.
While interest in installing solar panels and wind turbines (even Home Depot has started selling small wind turbines) is at an all time high, many people are running into a problem–that problem is the homeowners’ association.
As many of you already know, homeowner associations (HOAs) are common in residential subdivisions such as condos, retirement and gated communities. They are established by real estate developers to market, manage, sell and maintain housing units.
They also set rules about changes made to the units, exterior decor and the like. While some are fair and reasonable, tales of woes about HOA’s have emerged, and have recently become a traditional opposition to the installation of wind and solar energy devices on individual units.
Not all HOAs are against renewable energy, and some state and federal laws are changing to allow for residents to install clean energy devices without the approval of HOAs.
Here in Colorado, the law protects the installation of solar and wind devices as long as they comply with the state’s interconnection and safety standards. Sometimes, as is the case in Florida, an HOA may dictate the placement of the device.
Caseley points out that in places where there are no HOAs, homeowners and larger facilities alike must sometimes contend with zoning laws as well as public opposition to the installment or construction of solar and wind devices. Opponents site the noise from wind turbines as well as the “ugliness” of turbines and solar panels.
She put together this excellent list of links for you to learn more about this topic.
Colorado’s Grand Junction Free Press debunks myths about solar power, including its prohibition by HOAs.
Ohio’s Twinsburg Bulletin tells of an HOA’s approval of solar panel installation.
The Palm Beach Post answers a reader question about solar panel installation in Florida.
MySanAntonio.com discusses legislation reducing the power of HOAs.
USA Today looks at how green practices conflict with HOAs.
How to Install Solar Panels in a Homeowners Association tells a lawyer’s perspective on this subject.
This PDF takes a look at one HOA’s approach to the renewable energy topic.
Getting Around Your HOA to Install Solar Panels offers tips on this topic.