Spring Breakers in HOAs

Spring Breakers in HOAs

By Darion Samuels / Published April 2024

Photo by iStockphoto.com/ViewApart

Spring break is a popular time for students to travel. Most destinations include great weather and access to beaches. With the growing popularity of short-term rental apps such as Airbnb, VRBO, and other platforms, some available locations are within homeowners’ associations. Unfortunately, these short-term visitors could create challenges for the residents living in HOA communities for many reasons. These challenges include excessive traffic, limited parking, and overcrowding of common areas such as pools and clubhouse facilities. While some are guests of residents, others are short-term visitors renting from HOA residents, allowing access to their homes for a limited amount of time during spring break and summer. Short-term visitors may only sometimes be aware of the association’s rules and guidelines that are implemented to protect their community. It is crucial to consider the well-being of other residents living in the community during these periods and avoid any legal liabilities. Here are some ways to limit negative experiences with short-term visitors in HOAs.

Require Approval

     Although short-term renters deal directly with the homeowner, HOAs should require additional approval from property management or board members involved in the decision-making process. Include background checks to ensure the applicant does not have a criminal background. Limit the bringing of weapons onto the premises, but first review local and state laws before implementing such rules to ensure there is no violation of the rights of an individual renting for a short time. Limit the number of people staying in the residence to avoid noise level and behavior concerns; this will help mitigate the negative impacts on the residents. Avoid violating the Fair Housing Act, which provides guidelines to HOAs to not enforce rules only against a protected class of individuals. Be sure all the rules that are enforced apply to everyone. It’s also essential to address any issues that may occur immediately and work towards a quick resolution.


     HOAs can create rules and regulations for their community, but federal, state, and local laws take precedence over HOA rules; association rules should not contradict or violate these laws. As a homeowner you also reserve the right to set rules and guidelines for any tenant or guest to follow while staying on the property. Explain each rule and guideline in detail, and list the violation with each offense. Be sure to remain within the community rules and expectations regarding common areas, pools, playgrounds, and other parts of the property. All rules and guidelines should be agreed upon before the rental date.

Photo by iStockphoto.com/Ridofranz

Enforce Parking Rules

     Consider all parking rules mandated by the association. This helps reduce the fines that result from the violation policies implemented by the community. Limit the number of vehicles parked at the residence. Keep street parking to a minimum as this helps avoid blocking the driveways of other homeowners and creating a traffic nuisance.

Smart Home Security

     Secure the exterior and interior of your property. Smart home technology has improved in many ways, and the interactive benefits provide remote access and monitoring control you can manage through a smartphone. Installing security cameras around the perimeter is a great solution to ensure the rules and guidelines are followed. Security cameras are also significant deterrents as most thieves avoid homes with surveillance devices installed. The ability to view live video and access recorded footage in real time is an excellent advantage for properties in HOAs. Smart door locks are another valuable device. Managing the codes and access of your short-term renters allows access to the home without needing a physical key. One key benefit of smart door locks is code access programming, which allows adding and deleting assigned codes to ensure there’s no reentry without approval. Security systems offer a great deal of safety and a crime deterrent. Real-time alerts on all sensors are valuable for monitoring suspicious, unauthorized access. Complete control of the property provides excellent peace of mind, knowing the investment in smart home devices is helping to mitigate the negative impact of short-term renters in the community.

     Prioritize the residents living in the community to ensure there is little or no impact on their harmony. Successful management of short-term visitors in HOAs requires cooperation from both property owners and renters.

Darion Samuels

Senior HOA Account Manager, ADT Community Association Program

     Darion Samuels is Sr. HOA account manager for ADT Community Association Program. We have a dedicated team that works primarily for ADT HOA communities, providing world-class customer care and service to more than 100,000 residences through bulk agreements. This includes 24/7 monitoring by our own state-of-the-art monitoring centers and “concierge-level” customer care and service provided by our exclusive community association service center. Alarm systems feature interactive technology, high-resolution CCTV systems, and customized smart home solutions for HOA customers. For more information, contact Darion Samuels at samuelsd@adt.com or call 954-299-1000.