"HOA" vent. . . living in the mountains in CO and can't have chickens???!!!

Discussion in 'Local Chicken Laws & Ordinances (and how to change' started by Autumn Acres, Nov 6, 2012.

  1. Autumn Acres

    Autumn Acres Out Of The Brooder

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    I moved to a little mountain community in Colorado just a few months ago. Bought a foreclosed home, and signed all the papers at the end of August. Nowhere in those papers were any mention of a Homeowners Association or covenants for this little mountain community. I live in the woods. I have some neighbors. I discussed the chickens with my neighbors before i moved them from MT. All the neighbors surrounding me were ok with my 4 hens and my 1 roo. Now it appears a neighbor who is a busy body, and lives half a mile away, does not like my rooster, and has complained officially to the HOA. I received a letter in the mail, with HOA covenants (which I never knew about), and it states the following:

    "No animals, livestock, or poultry of any kind shall be raised, bred, or kept on any lot, except that dogs, cats, or other small household pets may be kept provided they are not kept, bred, or maintained for any commercial purpose."

    In my opinion, my chickens are pets. I do not breed them, eat them, or sell their eggs. They are just the same as my cat and dog. So, to me, they are small household pets, and I am willing to fight for this.

    Not to mention, I have neighbors who also have chickens, who have not been picked on like this. I have been reported to the county for all the work I've been doing on my house, to see if I have permits for the work. . . which I have. Sounds like someone just hates my rooster. But really, I live in the mountains!!!!!!!! And my neighbors that are close by like the rooster!! So what is the problem?!

    I should mention that they cited the HOA covenants that my rooster is a nuisance. Well, my next door neighbor grows $40k in marijuana every 4-6 weeks, talk about a nuisance smell. . .and I have neighbors with barking dogs. . .talk about nuisance noise!

    Just frustrated and not sure what to do. I've been told by the neighbors that like the rooster that the HOA has no enforcement power, and they're just picking on me, so let it be. But it really stinks to get picked on when you never knew about these covenants to begin with. Had I known, I wouldn't have moved here. Those chickens are my PETS, and I wouldn't want to be separated from them.

    Any advice?
     
  2. chickortreat

    chickortreat Chillin' With My Peeps

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  3. ChickensRDinos

    ChickensRDinos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You need to do research and know what your rights are. Call your local animal control. What are the rules in your zone. Make you are are looking at your exact zone and not your whole county because sometimes it varies. Make sure you are following those rules to the T. How many hens are allowed/rooster or no/how close are they allowed to be to any residence.

    Read through every single paper you signed and do research on the HOA. Is it mandatory or optional? Did your other neighbors sign anything? Did you? Do you pay HOA fees or any sort of monthly lot or neighborhood fees? Sometimes HOA rules do trump local rules but it should not just be coming up now.

    Legally chickens are not usually considered pets. Keep a copy of all of legal paper work and document anything that happens. Don't listen to hearsay. Do your own research.

    $40,000 of pot every month? That is an awful lot of weed. How big is this yard lol.
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2012
  4. chickortreat

    chickortreat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    In all seriousness, if I had a neighbor that wanted to make trouble and get huffy over something as trivial as my owning a few chickens, I'd invite them to step out in the road and have it out. I figure compared to a broken nose and a few lost teeth, a neighbor owning a few chickens would seem rather appealing. This country has gone so far downhill that some whiny, pouting crybaby has a fit over the most ridiculous things.
     
  5. ChickensRDinos

    ChickensRDinos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Are you seriously suggesting that our nation would be better off if people threatened violence more often?
     
  6. Autumn Acres

    Autumn Acres Out Of The Brooder

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    My neighbor actually did get beat up the other day for taking a stand against someone who was cutting down forest service trees for firewood. They duked it out. I'm about ready to do the same for my gals [​IMG]. I paid a $25 HOA fee when I first moved in, to get a sweet deal on propane. Now I'm thinking I was duped! I wonder if there is a way I can retract my membership and refuse to become a member. The county says I can have a horse on my property, but the HOA says no. It's all so mixed up! I live in a county where I can have up to 6 hens, and roosters aren't allowed. Which I found out after the fact, or I never would have moved them, OR bought the house!!!! So frustrating to feel like you're living alone in the mountains, yet neighbors complain when they're over a river and through the woods. . .literally.

    I asked the HOA to send me a copy of the covenants. So they send me ONLY page 2 of a multi-paged document, and highlighted the lines they think apply to me. That's not what I asked for. . .I wanted the entire document!

    All my neighbors tell me to wait on the county to do something about it because the HOA is a bunch of busy-bodies! I'm strongly considering it, just by the way this whole thing was handled. [​IMG]
     
  7. Fluffnpuff

    Fluffnpuff Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Some battles just ain't winable. I'm fortunate to live far away from any H.O.A. Unless you want a figurative war with a neighbor and H.O.A. fines, the only real option would be to get legal counsel from a lawyer and see if its legally binding to be forced into a H.O.A. without consent and paperwork. Since you were never told you would be in a H.O.A., it might be possible to invalidate your obligation to follow any of the covenant. If a lawyer can't get you out of it, you might be able to convince the HOA to revise its rules to allow hens on the property.

    I doubt fisticuffs would solve much and keep in mind people like the neighbor you described will often find something to complain about regardless. Even if you give up on chickens, he or she will probably become fixiated on all kinds of random stuff to be upset about. Is the location of your house and its price good enough to put up with constant neighbor harrasment?
     
  8. TurtlePowerTrav

    TurtlePowerTrav T.K.'s Farm

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    I would demand the ENTIRE HOA agreement and have a lawyer look it over. God luck. Busy-body neighbors are the worst. [​IMG]
     
  9. chickortreat

    chickortreat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Most definitely there are times when violence would be better than passivity. This country was born of violence. Do you think otherwise? I believe in minding my own business and leaving others alone. When they infringe on me, I'll be in the right. I do believe a thorough butt-kicking would improve the disposition of quite a few people.
    Who beat him up, and on what grounds? If he was on public land when he confronted them, he does not have near the leverage he would on his own land.
     
  10. cassie

    cassie Overrun With Chickens

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    Check out the HOA. Does it even exist and who is on the board, how is it governed, and how does it enforce infractions and levy penalties. And whether it is even legal. Often if there is an HOA there are some fees. And check your deed. There should be something about an HOA and covenants, if any, therein. The very first thing I did when I bought this property to see if there was an HOA. If there was, I wasn't buying it.
     

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