The association exists primarily to promote community and property values.
We have used these two principles as a guide for making decisions.
The association was created at the time of development. Most modern urban or rural subdivisions have homeowner’s associations (HoA’s). HoA’s are a means for the Developer to maximize their return-on-investment (RoI). Developers buy land and enter into agreement with the local government to develop the land with public improvements and to subdivide the land for the eventual construction of homes. The Developer gets their RoI when they sell the lots to Builders and Builders get RoI when the home is sold to the Homeowner.
During the build-out phase the Developer seeks to maximize the lot price. The HoA provides the legal authority to the Developer to dictate what can and cannot happen on any individual lot, thereby preventing any Builder or Homeowner decreasing property values.
The HoA documents tend to specify when the governance of the HoA transfers from the Developer to the Homeowners. For our HoA the threshold was when 75% of the lots were sold.
This transfer occurred around 2004 and a few homeowners took on the responsibility of paying the insurance for the common areas and keeping the association in a dormant state.
In 2017 these homeowners held possibly the first member meeting and since the Forest Edge Estates Homeowner’s Association (FEEHA) has been slowly moving along.
Dissolution of an HoA would need to be better understood legally. Our founding documents do not spell out the mechanism. In most cases either 67% or 80% of all voting members would need to agree to dissolution. The dissolution would need to include a plan for what entities own the common area and becomes responsible for median maintenance.
Dissolution has been discussed at previous meetings and perennially is asked. Simply put alternatives sound good in theory but rarely are they amenable to the majority.
You should have been made aware of the association at the time of property purchase. Any recent buyers would have had a $200 point-of-sale fee as an association due which was enacted to make the HoA noticeable.
To determine your lot number please visit the Johnson County Iowa Property Information Viewer at https://gis.johnson-county.com/piv/
Search for your home address using the search bar.
A pop-up panel will open and your lot will be selected. Within the pop-up your lot number will be listed in the “Legal Description”.
Please follow the guidance for determining your lot number. The “Legal Description” will also state the Forest Edge Estates Part number.
Please contact the FEEHA board and officers at firstname.lastname@example.org or mail the complaint to one of the officers at the addresses listed on the “Contact” page.
Anonymous complaints will be ignored. We are volunteers and do not have time to be investigators as well. We strive to promote community by good communication. Expect us to mediate not dictate.
We generally turn these reviews around quickly and tend to provide helpful information. Many members have made improvements and many of the officers have experience with means and methods of construction. Therefore we get to pass on knowledge of what works, what to look out for, and what may end up not working out so well.
Per our covenants, no.
Per practice, there are unattached structures in our neighborhood.
We have endeavored to ask homeowners to meet three criteria regarding unattached structures:
- Get buy-in from their immediate neighbors and report this agreement back to us.
- The structure will not be easily seen from the right-of-way.
- The structure’s appearance is substantially equivalent to the appearance of the home.
Consideration is also given to size, function, and other associated improvements (i.e. pavement and landscaping).
These requirements ensure neighbors maintain their communication and property values do not suffer from a backyard parking lot or hobby gone awry.
Our covenants do not strictly address solar panels.
In practice we have asserted the following policy:
- Panels are not easily seen from the right-of-way.
- Panels are black with black trim to prevent harsh glare.
- Panels are affixed to the roof. No free-standing solar arrays are allowed.
- The installation is clean and professional. No dangling wires or gaudily patched through holes in the siding.
Many homes have solar arrays and the policy above protects home values by providing a means for solar and some standardization for the aesthetic.
The right-of-way is publicly-owned land for roads and utilities. If you visit the Johnson County Property Information Viewer per the “What is my lot number?” FAQ and turn on the aerial base map (use the “four box” icon in the upper right of the page to open the base map gallery and select the 2019 Aerials). You will see the box which is your lot stops behind the sidewalk.
Everything from the edge of our lot’s boundary to the lot across the street is right-of-way.
Municipal code requires the homeowner to maintain the right-of-way from their lot line to the curb line. This is standard.
The medians are right-of-way and owned by the City.
The vegetation maintenance of the medians is the responsibility of FEEHA. This responsibility was clarified in an agreement with the City and passed by resolution through Council. The original agreement is within the Developer’s Agreement for Forest Edge Estates – Part 1.
A copy of the resolution is available on this page as “Median Agreement”.
In essence the FEEHA can do whatever it likes to the median vegetation within the limits of the City code. Any hardscape repairs to curb or pavement is the responsibility of the City.
To date many individual volunteers have maintained the medians. We hope to have a median maintenance committee in the near future to better organize these efforts and potentially improve the medians appeal.
We have three medians in the neighborhood.
- Forest Edge Dr. at 12th Ave.
- Muddy Creek Ln. near Maplewood Dr.
- Creek View Court
We have one common area. Forest Edge Estates Part Six – Outlot F. This is the two ponds bordered by the interior lots of High Bluff Dr. and Forest Edge Dr.
This common area has recently been evaluated by Snyder and Associates. The report is available on this page.
Annually we pay a bare minimum insurance policy on this property.
Many members would like to see this area improved and maintained. This is something we are going to explore at the next member meeting.
No. We tried and they said no. Two reasons, insufficient access for the public from the right-of-way and they just don’t have the budget to maintain these areas.
If you browse the large non-single family home lots in and around our subdivision you will see many are Outlots of the Forest Edge Estates Development. These were deeded to the City during development. As were many other development outlots throughout the City. Random development outlots along with the landscaped medians (i.e. Oakdale @ 12th), stormwater best management practices (i.e. 5th St), and regular park and right-of-way tree maintenance has caused a great burden on the City’s Parks Department. The lesson learned is to not take ownership of these properties because insufficient resources exist to maintain them.
The association is a business entity registered with the State of Iowa and able to be found on the Secretary of State’s website https://sos.iowa.gov/
Our business number is 261140.
The association has articles of incorporation, bylaws, and covenants. The articles of incorporation delineate the broad strokes (votes, board, indemnity, assessments, etc…). The bylaws provide more details on the function and may be amended by a simple majority of the directors. The covenants are restrict the use and aesthetic of the properties within the association.
Annually there is to be a member meeting. The members elect the (3) directors for the board. The directors elect the officers. The number of directors and officers may be amended by the board by changing the bylaws.
A quorum for the member meeting is 19 votes or one-tenth of all member votes.
A quorum for the directors is a simply majority or two directors.
Please reach out to us at the email@example.com e-mail and let us know you are interested.
Expense reimbursement must be approved in advance by the board. Any expenditure made without prior approval will not be reimbursed.
The assessment of $85 in 2018 was a one-time assessment based on a “Do-Nothing” budget.
This was an attempt to place some money in an association bank account to cover the common area insurance, mailings, state business filing fees, etc…
We have done things and the point-of-sale fee has allowed the account to remain in the black.
As members become more active and desire more improvements for the betterment of our property values and community, there will inevitably be more assessment votes.
This makes sense and is encouraged. A relatively trifling amount of money from the 187 lots can make drastic improvements to our medians or common area. The medians provide a first impression of our neighborhood and impact our overall appeal to potential buyers. The common area, if improved, can provide a niche green space to members and becomes a perk for the homeowner to list with their property making it more desirable in a sale.
This improves our return-on-investment as homeowners.