Gaithersburg, MD asked in Consumer Law, Real Estate Law and Land Use & Zoning for Maryland

Q: I am the builder of a new home in Prince Georges County Maryland. I am having a horrible time with an overzealous HOA

I am representing a purchaser of a custom to be built home. The lot is within a 50 year old community called Montpelier in Laurel MD 20707. All of the houses with the exception of this one lot was built in the 60's . The association is Montpelier Community Association. They have an application for architectural changes. It doesnt address the proper categories for a complete house, only for additions, decks and fencing. They specify the requirements for the outside front elevation, which was followed per their direction. The application was submitted and received on 4/7/21, I checked back with them 3 weeks later without response. I checked again 3 weeks later and again nothing. I contacted the md attorney generals office that stated that montpelier is actually a community association and they cannot govern as a HOA operates. plus they cannot just keep the application and not give any feedback. I sent over a demand letter to the hoa which generated a nasty response. what do i do

1 Lawyer Answer
Thomas C. Valkenet
Thomas C. Valkenet
  • Real Estate Law Lawyer
  • Baltimore, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: Your questions says you are "developer," but that you "represent the owner." Regardless, you have a political and legal problem. If you can't negotiate your way through a community organization staffed by non-professionals, you have the legal option of seeking a declaratory judgment from the circuit court. The order you seek would confirm the County info you received (if the documents support the conclusion) that the organization is acting beyond its statutory authority, or in violation of its private documents.

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