The CC&Rs and VG Handbook: Their Importance
As an owner of a unit at Village Green (VG), you are automatically a member of the VG Owners Association (VGOA) and in joint ownership of Association property. As such, you are legally bound by the Association’s covenants, rules, and restrictions (CC&Rs), as well as the VG Handbook. For more info, visit: http://www.villagegreenla.net/governing-documents.html
Ownership at Village Green consists of airspace only - "paint to paint." You own the space within walls, floors, and ceiling. The walls themselves, both exterior and interior, as well as floor/ceiling structures, plumbing pipes and electrical wires are Common (Association) property.
State Law assigns responsibility for the Common Areas to the Association’s Board of Directors. Because associations are responsible for the common areas and because CC&Rs prohibit alterations to the common areas without prior approval of the board of directors, you may modify Common property only with written approval. Legal action may be undertaken, fines imposed, and/or physical restoration required for any unauthorized work.
All modification work must comply with a separate document, "Unit Modification Rules & Requirements," which is based on The Village Green Handbook, Article 10 - Construction and Repairs. See section below for more info.
HCMS and Mills Act: Why You Should Care
In 1977, Village Green was designated as Historic-Cultural Monument (HCM) #174 for the City of Los Angeles. HCM designation requires that exterior and interior alterations be reviewed by the city’s Cultural Heritage Commission, and provides eligibility for the Mills Act program. In 2010, VGOA entered into a Mills Act contract with the City of Los Angeles Office of Historic Resources (LAOHR).
Owners of HCM properties who enter Mills Act agreements receive a property tax cut from the city in exchange for maintaining their properties’ significant historic features. Any modification of a VG Unit must be done in accordance with the VG’s Historic Structures Report (HSR), the guiding document that details the character-defining features of Village Green, which should be preserved.
You should care about the HCM and Mills Act because most VGOA owners receive a discount on property taxes in exchange for adherence to the HSR guidelines. Violating these obligations could cause a breach of contract, which may result in considerable financial penalties for all owners.