Royal Links Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
The answers below attempt to answer common questions to the Board. The answers are not written to be legal documents or considered legal precedent. The Royal Links covenants and city of Bloomington are the best source for legal answers to questions and supersede this FAQ.
1. Q: What is the difference between a covenant, town law and ordinance, by-Law, rule, and property right?
A: Covenants are considered legal agreements which both the homeowners and the association are required to honor. Covenants are recorded in the county where the property is located. Since they show up in the chain of title to your land, the buyer of the land has what is called "constructive notice" of the covenants. For example, the Royal Links covenants state that mail boxes shall be of uniform style. Please make yourself familiar the Royal Links covenants.
Laws are rules made by the government of a town, state, country, etc. An ordinance is a law passed by a local municipal government. For example, building code and property ordinance information from the City of Bloomington addresses lawn maintenance.
By-Laws describe how the HOA operates and may include a description of the Board of Director roles, their terms and responsibilities, homeowner meetings, powers of the Board, election of officers, and how the By-Laws may be amended. The Royal Links covenants describe the Royal Links HOA creation and director roles.
HOA rules are regulations that expand on the covenants but may not contradict them. Depending on the situation, the Board may vote to create a rule or the covenants may require rules to be voted on by the homeowners.
Please be conscientious and respect all homeowner’s personal enjoyment. Property rights may be governed by covenants, laws, ordinances, or rules. Enforcement depends on the situation and violation. Complaints to the Board may not be violations of, or enforceable under, the Royal Links covenants or rules. HOA Board authority is not unlimited. Some violations may only be enforceable by government authority. For example, speeding in the neighborhood is a local government law violation and subject to governmental enforcement. When applicable, HOA Board enforcement of a violation may require the cost of litigation and paid by HOA dues and collected savings. Please understand the covenants and rules when submitting a violation to the Board. A copy of the covenants are available on the website.
2. Q: Who is responsible for my HOA dues if I move?
A: The HOA dues are payable once per year and are obligations of the legal homeowner when assessed. Dues notices are mailed to all of the neighborhood addresses at the beginning of the calendar year and payment is due March 1. Forms are available on this website for download. In situations where you move prior to completing payment, the dues will be addressed at the closing of the real estate transaction. Any unpaid dues will be collected at that time. The new property owner will be responsible for future dues going forward. If you are moving or refinancing and need legal verification that your annual dues are paid in full, please contact the Treasurer or Board.
3. Q: What is the process for a homeowner to request a covenant change?
A: The Royal Links covenants are designed to ensure that the neighborhood maintains high standards of design and appearance and, in addition, attempts to support the highest potential property valuation. Written requests for covenant amendments should include documented support for the proposed change and be formally sent to the Board. The covenants state that the Developer retains authority over covenant amendments until all of the property lots are sold.
4. Q: What is the purpose of the Architectural Committee? What needs approval? Can I install a fence?
A: All building plans must be submitted for review by the Royal Links Architectural Design Committee established by the Developer, or its designated successor. Plans will be reviewed for compliance with the covenants and architectural and aesthetic compatibility with other homes in the development.
The Royal Links covenants list items and building that must be submitted to the Architectural Committee. For example, fencing plans must be submitted to the Royal Links Architectural Design Committee for approval. A copy of the covenants and a downloadable form that could be submitted to the RLHOA Architectural Committee are available on the website.
5. Q: Can I put up a permanent basketball hoop? Are temporary portable basketball hoops allowed?
A: Any permanent recreational facilities such as a basketball court requires approval by the Architectural Committee. According to the covenants, location allowances depend on the type of property lot.
On non-lake lots, any permissible permanent or temporary basketball hoops may be installed in the side or back yards of the lot. Basketball hoops may not be installed in the front or corner side yard.
On lake lots, any permissible permanent or temporary basketball hoops may be installed in the side yard of the lake lot. Basketball hoops may not be installed in the front, corner side, or any rear yard adjacent to the lake.
6. Q: Can I put up a playhouse or trampoline in my backyard?
A: Any permanent recreational facilities requires approval by the Architectural Committee. According to the covenants, location allowances depend on the type of property lot.
On non-lake lots, all permissible outdoor permanent or temporary sporting or recreational equipment may be installed in the side or back yards of the lot. Outdoor sporting or recreational equipment may not be installed in the front or corner side yard.
On lake lots, all permissible outdoor permanent or temporary sporting or recreational equipment may be installed in the side yard of the lake lot. Outdoor sporting or recreational equipment may not be installed in the front, corner side, or any rear yard adjacent to the lake.
7. Q: Can people walk around or fish in the lake if they don’t live on a lake lot?
A: Lake lots are private property of the lake lot residents. As with all property owners, property rights exist. Without permission to be on the property, violators would be trespassing.
The lake is for private use of the lake lot owners. The Royal Links covenants state that the lake is intended to be an amenity solely for the lots abutting the lake. Docks and boats are not allowed.
8. Q: Who do we call if our street light is out?
A: Corn Belt Energy maintains the street light lamp and photocell. If you come across a dark street light, contact Corn Belt Energy to report it.
The city of Bloomington electricians maintain the pole, underground wire, fixtures, and globes on Corn Belt Energy lights. Please contact the city of Bloomington if there are relevant issues related to the pole, underground wire, fixtures, and globes.
9. Q: Who is responsible for the neighborhood streets and sidewalks?
A: The city of Bloomington and its designated municipal departments are responsible for maintaining neighborhood streets and sidewalks. If you come across a street or sidewalk issue, contact the city of Bloomington to report it.
10. Q: Who do I call if there is a neighborhood landscaping or irrigation issue with the neighborhood berms, common areas, or lake/fountains?
A: If you notice an issue with the neighborhood berms, common areas, or lake/fountains please contact the HOA Board. The Board will then contact the appropriate service vendors to address a problem. This process will ensure the discussion between our neighborhood and the appropriate vendor is consistent and will limit repeated calls to vendors regarding the same issue.
11. Q: When are the lake fountains installed?
A: Installing the lake fountains is weather dependent. The Board typically contacts the vendor to initiate the process in April and the fountains are normally installed in late April/May. The fountains are also removed based on the weather and forecast. The fountains are typically removed in October/November and stored by the vendor.
The installation or removal process may be affected by maintenance. For example, in 2014, the vendor recommended the fountain motors and leads receive preventive maintenance (such as sealing) prior to installation. As a result, the installation process was delayed.
If there is an issue with the lake or fountains please contact the Board. In turn, the Board will contact the vendor.
12. Q: Do the Royal Links covenants specify tree landscaping minimums? What about lawn maintenance?
A: The covenants require trees in the front and back yards. All lot owners must plant and maintain two 2-inch or larger diameter deciduous trees of a native hardwood variety in the front yard and one 2-inch or larger diameter deciduous tree (evergreen plantings do not satisfy this requirement) in the rear or side yard.
Grass and lawn requirements prior to and during construction are addressed in the covenants. Once home construction is completed, the city of Bloomington regulations address landscaping maintenance including lawns. Bloomington regulations state all exterior property shall be kept free from weeds or plant growth in excess of 8 inches. If you fail to cut your grass, the City may cut it for you, but you will be charged for all costs and an administrative fee. Should you come across a Bloomington landscaping regulation issue, contact the city of Bloomington to report it.
13. Q: Do the Royal Links covenants address trash and garbage?
A: Yes, the covenants require all trash and garbage be screened from view except for designated collection days. The city of Bloomington Public Works also addresses trash and garbage rules.
14. Q: Why are all of the neighborhood mail boxes uniform?
A: The Royal Links covenants require all mail boxes be of a uniform style. The Royal Links covenants are designed to ensure that the neighborhood maintains high standards of design and appearance and, in addition, attempts to support the highest potential property valuation. The Homeowners Association Board can help the lot owner purchase a replacement mail box.
15. Q: Can I put up a sign in my lot?
A: The Royal Links covenants limit billboards and advertising signs. The covenants allow an exception for billboards and advertising signs permitted by city ordinance and for contractor and real estate signage during initial construction and subsequent remodel or resale.
16. Q: Do the covenants address noise complaints?
A: Please be conscientious and respect all homeowner’s personal enjoyment. The Royal Links covenants do not address noise violations.
The Bloomington City Council has determined that it is in the best interest of its residents to control noise in a manner which promotes the use, value, and enjoyment of property; sleep and repose; and environmental quality. Residents are encouraged to report a noise disturbance. A Bloomington Police Officer determines that if there is a noise disturbance violation they will enforce the Noise Ordinance by issuing an ordinance violation citation to the violator. Common reported noise disturbances include loud parties, barking dogs, construction, loud car stereos, and domestic power tools. Several sections in the Bloomington City Code deal with specific noises that are currently being enforced:
- Noisy Animals – Chapter 8, Section 8,
- Vehicle Noise (Mufflers/Amplification Systems) – Chapter 29, Section 83,
- Disorderly House – Chapter 28, Section 65.
Bloomington curfew ordinance states that individuals under 17 must be in by 11:00 PM Sunday through Thursday and by Midnight on Friday and Saturday.
17. Q: Are there specific requirements for mailboxes in RLHOA?
Decorative Post – Modern Black: Item 4825BLK