Are you the manager, executive, or board member of a homeowners association (HOA) in Kentucky? If so, you'll need to ensure that you have a working knowledge of the relevant legislation. In this article, we aim to provide just that.

We'll provide a definition of the term "homeowners association," talk about some of the state laws that regulate HOAs, and discuss the rights and responsibilities of these private entities.

Understanding the Basics

Homeowners associations are private entities implemented by common interest communities for the betterment of the neighborhood as a whole.

They oversee the maintenance and repair of common elements and enforce certain laws and rules to maintain order and uniformity throughout the community. This helps to maintain the value of all properties in the neighborhood.

HOA Rights and Responsibilities

Property owners associations have the right to regulate common spaces, collect dues and assessments, and impose fines when a homeowner violates its rules. A Kentucky common interest community may also place a COA or HOA lien on the property of a delinquent homeowner who fails to pay their dues.

Should the lien remain unaddressed, the association will be able to foreclose on the owner's home to obtain the unpaid amount.

Governing Documents

Homeowners associations are regulated by local, state, and federal laws. They are also subject to the rules and regulations set out in their own governing documents.

These documents typically include the organization's Bylaws, Articles of Incorporation, and a Declaration of Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions.

Why You Need to Familiarize Yourself with Kentucky HOA Laws

Citizens have an individual responsibility to understand and abide by local, federal, and state laws. Similarly, HOA boards must understand and be up to date on the various state regulations that pertain to their organization. Sadly, if you lack legal expertise, understanding Kentucky legislation can be difficult.

Nevertheless, as someone in a management role, it is your responsibility to keep your organization away from legal risks. Failure to comply can have a wide range of repercussions, which include financial implications.

Homeowners may accuse your organization of breaking the law and file a lawsuit against you for damages. In some cases, this is enough to put a community association out of business, which causes the neighborhood to suffer.

To avoid this, it is critical for your association to stay updated on all of your state's legislation. You can do this on your own or, ideally, with the assistance of a skilled lawyer.

While there is no statute in Kentucky that directly oversees homeowners organizations, there are numerous acts that pertain to such associations.

An Overview of Kentucky HOA Laws

Now that you know what HOAs are and the rights and responsibilities they have, let's explore the state laws found in the Kentucky Revised Statutes that govern them.

Kentucky Nonprofit Corporation Act

The truth is that Kentucky doesn't have a dedicated statute for community associations. Most Kentucky homeowners associations have been established as nonprofit corporations and are governed by the Secretary of State.

As a result, they will be regulated by the Kentucky Nonprofit Corporation Act, which specifies how the organization ought to be run in terms of its organizational makeup and oversight.

Kentucky Condominium Act

This act controls condominium creation, authority, administration, and operation in Kentucky. It also provides guidelines on insurance, common elements, the maintenance of certain records, and more.

Moreover, the act addresses condominium developments that were established after the first of January 2011. However, certain portions of this chapter might be relevant to condominiums founded prior to this date.

Kentucky Fair Housing Act

The law prohibits housing bias in Kentucky based on characteristics such as: 

  • Familial status
  • National origin
  • Disability
  • Gender
  • Race
  • Religion
  • Color

Like the Federal Fair Housing Act, it protects homeowners and provides protection at the state level.

Keep in mind that victims of housing discrimination can approach the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development or the Kentucky Commission of Human Rights for help if an HOA has treated them unfairly.

Alternatively, they could choose to file a private lawsuit at a state or federal district court to pursue damages.

Kentucky Horizontal Property Law

This law applies to horizontal property regimes established prior to the first of January 2011. It establishes a set of regulations for the creation of these associations, the allocation of interest, shared expenditures, property liens, and insurance, and other topics, such as the management and authority of such entities.

About DoorLoop's HOA Management Software

Records retention, bookkeeping, and communication are the cornerstones of any homeowners association, and to ensure that your HOA complies with the relevant laws, rules, and regulations, you must ensure that you have access to the right tools.

At DoorLoop, we understand the challenges that board members, executives, and managers often face, which is why we have created an intuitive set of tools designed to help you with your day-to-day operations.

With a powerful set of features, affordable pricing, world-class support, and so much more, DoorLoop's HOA management software is the solution you need to run a successful homeowners association in Kentucky.

Get in touch with us today to try it out for yourself with a FREE demo or to learn more.

Fines and Foreclosures

There are no legal rules in Kentucky that govern HOA fines. The association's governing documents specify various kinds of fines, how much will be charged, and the requirements for notices.

A community association cannot punish a homeowner for exhibiting the US national flag in accordance with the federal flag display law and setting up antennas and satellite dishes.

Again, there are no laws that specify whether HOAs can foreclose on a home. This information can be found in the HOA's governing documents. However, if the association does place a lien on a delinquent homeowner's property and it is not settled, his or her home can be foreclosed.

Closing Comments

Remaining up to date with the relevant Kentucky HOA laws is your duty if you have a management role in a homeowners association. Because laws are constantly being amended and additional local laws may apply, be sure to do further research.

If you need help ensuring that your common interest community complies with the applicable laws, contact us today to try our property management software!

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Are there any laws governing debt collection practices in Kentucky?

Kentucky has not adopted explicit legislation regulating debt collection practices. Homeowners in the state are safeguarded by the Federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA).

Third-party debt collectors are prohibited by the act from engaging in behavior that can be considered unfair, abusive, or misleading.

2. Can HOAs foreclose on a home in its community?

Yes. HOAs can place liens on a homeowner's property, and if left unaddressed, the property can be foreclosed.

3. Is it mandatory for homeowners to join HOAs in Kentucky?

The law does not make it mandatory for new homeowners to join the homeowners association in the area they have moved to. However, HOAs may include provisions in their governing documents that make membership mandatory.

4. Where can I find Kentucky HOA records?

In Kentucky, homeowners association governing documents are not considered public records. The neighborhood association retains its bylaws and does not file them with any public organization.

Articles of Incorporation and yearly reports that have been filed with the Kentucky Secretary of State may be accessed online. Certain records are available at no additional cost, while you may have to pay to obtain others.

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David is the co-founder & CMO of DoorLoop, a best-selling author, legal CLE speaker, and real estate investor. When he's not hanging with his three children, he's writing articles here!