What is a Property Owners Association?
The POA is a membership of homeowners that is responsible for the enforcement of the Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions for the properties in the neighborhood. The Association also maintains the landscaping and fences in the common areas of the neighborhood. The goals of the POA are to enhance the appearance of our neighborhood, facilitate a sense of community, promote safety, and maintain property values
Are Homeowner Associations (HOA)/Property Owners Associations (POA) Common?
Yes. These self-governing organizations serve an important role in managing common areas and protecting the investment of the homeowners. According to research from iProperty Management (April 2022):
- Homeowners’ associations in the United States manage 355,000 communities, with an average of 22 new associations forming every day.
- 80% of newly constructed homes sold in 2020 were part of HOA communities.
- 53% of all homeowners live in HOA communities.
- $250 is the average monthly HOA membership fee for a single family home.
- 40 million housing units are part of HOA communities.
- Roughly 4,000 new HOA communities form each year.
What is the difference between Stoneridge POA and the Wells Branch Neighborhood Association (WBNA)?
The Stoneridge POA membership includes only the 135 property owners in our subdivision. Membership in the POA is not optional and is disclosed during the purchase of your property. The Wells Branch Neighborhood Association is a social/civic organization that includes all addresses in Wells Branch. The WBNA publishes their own monthly newsletter. Joining the WBNA (and paying the annual membership fee) is totally optional. That membership fee is not applied to the Stoneridge POA.
Has the neighborhood always been known as Stoneridge?
No. The Association was formed by the developer (Wells Branch Joint Venture) and initially called Wells Branch Residential POA Inc., which remains the association's legal name. In 1999, on completion of the home building, the developer turned the association over to the homeowners. The Stoneridge name was adopted by a vote of the members at the 2001 Annual Meeting to distinguish it from the greater Wells Branch area. That is the name under which the association commonly does business.
I already pay taxes to the Municipal Utility District, so why do I have to pay POA dues?
The MUD is responsible for the water service, flood control, garbage pickup and maintenance of the parks and trails throughout the entire Wells Branch area. They do not maintain the landscaping, fences and walls that are contained inside many of the various subdivisions and neighborhoods throughout Wells Branch.
What areas is the Stoneridge POA responsible for?
Stoneridge includes Ploverville Dr. east of Wells Port Drive, Bescott Drive, Purslane Meadow Trail, Rose Pavonia Place, Parralena Lane, and Camas Drive. All of the homes on these streets are members of the Stoneridge POA. The POA maintains the common landscape property areas along Wells Port, the entrance walls, fences, signs, and flower beds on Cervin and Ploverville. The Association maintains two property easements on Camas Drive.
When did I join the Stoneridge POA?
Every property owner becomes a member of the Association when they purchased their home. At the closing of your home purchase, buyers are notified in a document called “Planned Unit Development Rider”. This document informs the property owner, that you are responsible for payment of a recurring assessment (dues).
What is meant by "assessment"?
There are two types:
- Annual Assessment - often referred to as "dues", this is the recurring amount each homeowner contributes to cover daily operations. It can be paid monthly or yearly. Current dues are $240 per year ($20/month).
- Special Assessment - a one-time fee shared among all owners to pay for an unexpected HOA expense that the normal budget and financial reserves cannot cover. To date, Stoneridge has never issued a special assessment.
How does this amount compare with other neighborhood associations?
The average HOA/POA fee in the US is $250 PER MONTH. Communities with many amenities (like pools, extensive fencing) or condo associations with infrastructure to maintain are on the higher end. Only a few areas of Wells Branch have home owner associations. Like Stoneridge, their dues are minimal, ranging from from $20.00 to $25.00 per month.
What is The Bishop Company that I mail my member dues to?
The Bishop Company is a homeowner property management company that is retained by the Association. They collect dues and maintain the accounting and expenses for the Association. They also send enforcement letters regarding violations of the Covenants and Deed Restrictions. Concerns regarding possible violation of the Covenants may be made directly to the Bishop Company
What penalties are there if I fail to pay my dues?
All members are expected to remain current in their dues obligations. Failure to do so will result in a reminder letter, followed by a certified letter, and finally the legal notification that a lien will be placed on the property.
What happens if a lien is placed on my property?
A property lien is placed only when other options to collect dues have been ignored. It is hoped that all members take their obligations and responsibility to the Association seriously. A property lien is a legal action taken to protect the Association. Once a lien is filed by the Association, the property cannot be sold or refinanced without settlement of all debts that are owed. The removal of the lien must be filed with the Travis County Courts, and all legal expenses and attorney fees incurred by the Association must be paid by the property owner. The accumulation of dues will continue until all debts and obligations in arrear are fully paid.
Are the Board of Directors (BOD) and Officers of the Association paid?
No. All of the BOD and Officers serve on a voluntary basis. They are elected each year at the Annual Meeting and donate their time and efforts to the neighborhood.
Who gets to vote for the Board?
Every property owner is eligible to cast one vote for each property lot that they own. Each property owner is also eligible to run for any of the 3 Board of Directors positions.
Can I serve in other ways other than the BOD?
Absolutely. There are other positions such as the Officers of the Association, and various committees, such as the Architectural and Social Events Committees. All help is greatly appreciated