Buying a Home
When you're buying a home, it's important to understand the restrictive covenants and other deed restrictions that are in place for the real estate you want to buy, because they dictate how you can and cannot use the property.
Restrictive covenants are deed restrictions that apply to a group of homes or lots, property that's part of a specific development or subdivision. They are normally put in place by the original developer, and are different for every area of homes.
Purpose of Restrictive Covenants
Restrictions give a development a more standard appearance, and control some of the activities that take place within its boundaries. When enforced, covenants protect property values.
What you'll typically see in covenants:
- Restrictive covenants nearly always stipulate the minimum size residence allowed, how many homes may be built on 1 lot, and what type of construction the homes must (or must not) be
- Set backs (how far homes must be from streets and interior lot lines)
- Easements (such as a pathway for power lines or roads)
- Fees for road maintenance or amenities
- Rules regarding changing or voiding the covenants
- Rules about pets and other animals (for instance: no breeding for profit, no livestock, no unchained pets)
- Regulations dealing with in-home businesses and home rentals
- Rules that limit tree cutting
- Clauses that dictate what type of fencing can be used, or that forbid all types of fencing
- Clauses to reduce clutter on lots, such as prohibiting owners from storing a vehicle that doesn't run within view of others, or parking a recreational vehicle on the property
It's important to know that covenants are not part of the Code of Ordinances, therefore, they are not enforced by the City of Verona. They typically would be enforced through the civil court system.