Community Association FAQs

1. Who do I call if there is an emergency?

Tidewater offers 24-hour emergency service to all clients. After hours, call (443) 548-0191(443) 548-0191.

2. Why do I have to pay Association Fees?

All owners are required to pay association fees by the governing documents of their association. The fees may be due annually, semi-annually, quarterly or monthly. These funds are used for the operation of the association, maintenance of the common property, and are used to provide services for the benefit of all owners. A portion of the fees collected are designated for the future replacement of aging property components.

3. How do I pay the Association Fees?

Tidewater Property Management is pleased to announce that you now have four different ways to pay assessments – Online via eCheck or Credit Card, ACH/Auto Debit, US Mail or Bill-Pay.

Online Payment Via eCheck or Credit Card (one time & recurring options)

How does it work?

You set up a one time or recurring payment using eCheck, MasterCard, American Express or Discover.

What do I need to do?

Simply follow the directions below:

Log in to www.smartstreet.com Select “Online Payments” Choose “One Time Credit Card Payment”, “One Time eCheck Payment” or “Recurring Payment”

Note: You will need a login ID to set up a recurring online payment which can be obtained by selecting “Register Now” and completing the form.

Select your homeowner’s association and follow the instructions on the screen.

*There is a $9.95 convenience fee and a $5,000 maximum per transaction, if you pay via a credit card.

ACH/Recurring Automatic Debit

How does it work?

Your account is automatically debited when your assessment is due.

What do I need to do?

Go to www.tidewaterproperty.com’s Downloadable Forms page and obtain an ACH Authorization Form.

US Mail/ Lockbox

How does it work?

You write a check and mail it in every time your assessment is due.

What do I need to do?

Write a check payable to your homeowner’s association and mail it along with your payment coupon to the address listed on the coupon. Important: Please write your homeowner account number on the check.

Your Bank’s Online Bill-Pay

How does it work?

Set up your HOA as a payee with your bank’s online banking bill-pay.

What do I need to do?

Please complete your bill-pay setup exactly as follows:

Payee: Association Name

Address 1: c/o Tidewater Property Management, Inc.

Address 2: 211 E. Lombard Street, PMB #134

City: Baltimore State: MD Zip: 21202-6102

Account Number/Reference Number: Your Homeowner Account Number

4. What does the Association do?

The association is a not-for-profit corporation managed by a Board of Directors elected by the owners. The Board of Directors are responsible for the management of the association’s funds, the enforcement of covenants and restrictions, rules and regulations and the maintenance of common area property.

5. What is a “managing agent”?

The managing agent is a company that is engaged by the Board of Directors. The managing agent tends to the day-to-day operation of the association and implements the policies and decisions as determined by the Board of Directors. The Board is allowed to delegate tasks, but not responsibility, to the managing agent. The managing agent has no authority except as conferred by the Board of Directors. The managing agent does not make decisions, only implements the decisions of the Board.

6. What are the Governing Documents?

The “Governing Documents” for your association are the articles of incorporation, bylaws, declaration of covenants, conditions and restrictions (or declaration of condominium) plus any rules and regulations, resolutions or guidelines that have been established by your association. These documents are recorded in the county in which the property lies and are provided to prospective purchasers as required by law. The laws of the state, county or municipality will supersede the community’s documents in the event of a conflict.

7. Where can I get a copy of the Governing Documents?

You received a copy at, or prior to, closing on your home. If you need another set, it is available through your association and/or its managing agent. Your governing documents are recorded instruments so they are also available through the county in which your association is located. A copy may be available for download on the community’s website.

8. What is a deed restriction?

A deed restriction is part of the declaration of covenants, conditions and restrictions (or declaration of condominium) that you agreed to when you bought your home. Through this document, you agreed to certain standards of maintenance, upkeep, and behavior in order to make the community as attractive as possible for yourself and neighbors and to maintain or enhance your property values. These were conditions under which you purchased and you agreed by consummating the purchase.

9. Why do I need to comply with the deed restrictions?

When you purchase a home in a deed restricted community you automatically agree to comply with the restrictions in place or that are properly established. This ensures that the integrity of the community is maintained. These restrictions are for your protection and for the protection of your neighbors. Failure to comply brings a responsibility to the Board of Directors to bring about any action legally necessary to force compliance.

10. Why do I have to get permission for home improvement?

This better ensures that your intended improvement meets your community’s standards as set forth in the governing documents. This also avoids problems that could arise from the construction of improvements and the use of colors or styles that conflict with others in your neighborhood. The Board of Directors has the power and the responsibility to force you to undo any improvement you make that do not comply with the governing documents. Once home improvements are approved, the change is permitted and that approval applies to you and any future owner of the home.

11. What is the “common area”?

It is the land for the use and enjoyment of the members of the association. This includes facilities such as pools, playgrounds, hallways, parking lots, exercise facilities, and building structures. Common areas are owned by all in an undivided interest. For this reason, maintenance responsibility falls proportionately on all owners who have that undivided interest in common areas. This sometimes is most painful in a condominium disaster wherein one building is damaged, but owners of all the other buildings feel the financial burden.

12. What is a resale certificate?

Resale certificates are prepared by management and contain two parts. The first relates to the individual unit and notifies the buyer whether the seller of the property has (or has not) paid all assessments that are due. It also informs the buyer whether there are any violations affecting the real property being sold. The second part relates to the condominium or homeowners association. This part contains copies of the governing documents, rules and regulations, evidence of insurance, and current financial statements. Buyers have a legal right to receive a resale certificate prior to settlement at the expense of the seller. Buyers also have the right to withdraw from the contract without penalty or loss of deposit, until they have been provided with the resale certificate and have had time to review the content.

13. What does the Association’s insurance cover?

The association’s master insurance policy’s coverage depends on your governing documents. Typically, it covers common areas/elements and does not cover the homeowner’s individual homes/lots/units.

14. What is the insurance deductible?

An insurance deductible is the portion of a loss not covered by the insurance policy. It is a small loss or first portion of the loss that the insured must pay. In Maryland, the deductible is paid by the owner of the property from which the damage originated. Maryland Law limits the amount of the deductible that may be charged to the unit owner to $5,000. If the association has a higher deductible than $5,000 it is considered to be self-insured for the excess. The association saves money on its insurance premiums by having the higher deductible but assumes responsibility for payment of claims over $5,000 and up to the amount of the deductible.

15. Who is the insured?

The association and each unit owner are insured by the master policy. Even if the unit owner caused the claim, the master policy cannot come back to the owner to recover the cost of the claim. The master policy covers everyone for the covered or insured losses.

16. Are there any pet restrictions?

Most condominium associations and many single family associations have pet restrictions. Because they can vary widely by community, please review the governing documents for the restrictions pertaining to your particular community. In addition to community restrictions, many counties have strongly enforced leash laws or ban certain types of pets (pit bulls, poisonous snakes, snakehead fish, etc.).

17. What is a “Master Association”?

“Master-planned communities” are often comprised of several distinct homeowners associations. In such cases, the master association is the “umbrella” organization that provides services that are common to all of the individual associations, such as contracts for community patrol, trash collection, common landscape maintenance, etc.

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