Connemara Woods Homeowners Association
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GENERAL INFORMATION:

NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH
Connemara Woods participates in the Loudoun County Neighborhood Watch program. Under this program, residents keep watch for unusual or suspicious activities and report them to a neighborhood watch coordinator or if the situation warrants, directly to the Loudoun County Sheriff's Office. (703-777-1021).

The neighborhood watch coordinators are John Wilson and Mike Segura. Mike is the central coordinator. He can be reached at (703) 864-3796 and John at 703-444-4981

PET WASTE
We've had incidents where one or more pets have "done their business" on other people's property and their owners have not cleaned up after them. Please be courteous of your neighbors and clean up.   This is a county law that carries a hefty fine.

THE "MEAL BRIGADE"
The "Meal Brigade" is a group of residents that provide meals for residents that are in the midst of life changing events. Such events include birth of a baby, emergency situations, death of a family member, and other special situations. If you wish to either receive meals or provide meals as a "brigade" member, please contact mailto: amyjmirra@yahoo.com .

TEST FOR RADON
Many homes in the Sterling area have radon gas concentrations exceeding the 4 pCi/l level that the EPA considers the maximum safe level. If you have a basement that is used as a living space, you should have your home tested. Consumer's Report recommends long duration testing (4-6 months) using a kit such as one from AccuStar Labs which is available from Home Depot. 

STORM WATER COLLECTION BASIN
There's a storm water collection basin behind 312 Tramore Court. Changes in Virginia law have removed the requirement for homeowners associations to maintain storm water collection basins. Such basins are now the resposibility of the County. The hotline to report damaged or clogged strom drains is 703-777-0117.

ACC GUIDLINES AND FORMS
Please consult the ACC approved paint chart before doing any exterior painting. At the March 2015 annual HOA meeting, new paint charts from Benjamin Moore were distributed. You can use the old McCormick paint chart or paint from another vendor as long as it matches one of the approved colors.  The charts will be distributed to those not in attendance. For further information, contact Chair of the ACC. 

HOMEOWNER COMPLAINT FORM
Click here for the form (PDF).

COMMERCIAL VEHICLES
Loudoun County ordinances forbid the parking of commercial vehicles in residential areas. Vehicles over one and a half tons or have more than two axles that are parked on residential streets are subject to fines and towing. In addition, homeowners who regularly park work trucks or vans in the neighborhood are asked to be considerate of others.  If you must park on the street, please park in front of your own home. In addition, make sure your vehicles are kept clean and orderly, and aren’t used to store building materials or any other items that can be viewed by passer-bys. 

TRASH CANS AND OTHER ITEMS
Please remember that garbage cans and recycling bins should be stored out of public view. In addition, other items such as lumber, mulch, bricks, etc. should not be stored anywhere on your property that is visible from the street. Such items should be stored within your home, garage, shed, or in your backyard. If you store items in your backyard, please be considerate of your neighbors by keeping all items neat and orderly, and out of view as much as possible. 

ARCHITECTURAL CHANGE REQUEST AND FORM
All changes to a Lot in Connemara Woods must be approved by the Connemara Woods Architectural Control Committee (ACC) prior to installation or construction. The ACC has 60 days after receipt of the proposed change to either approve or reject the proposal but will make a reasonable attempt to respond to urgent requests sooner. ACC decisions can be appealed to the Connemara Woods Homeowners Association Board of Directors. Changes governed by the ACC approval process include all changes to ANY external structure or Lot element including, but not limited to the following: 

- room additions (external)
- sheds 
- roofing 
- trim, downspouts and gutters 
- siding 
- windows and doors 
- skylights (if visible from the curb)
- pathways, sidewalks, and driveways visible from the curb
- porch railings and columns 
- fences and gates 
- decks, patios, and porches (if visible from the curb)
- playground equipment (if visible from the curb)
- tree removal (for trees over 6 inches in diameter)

Homeowners must obtain prior ACC approval for new structures or Lot elements, but also for replacements of these items if they differ from the original. Exceptions to this policy are contained in the PPRR. Homeowners are permitted to paint the doors and trim without ACC approval provided that the colors conform to the CWHA pre-approved color chart. Change requests must be submitted in writing, and provide enough details such that the ACC can make an informed decision regarding the change. Please remember that all contractors should be made aware that CWHA approval is necessary before the commencement of any exterior work. 

Use of the official CWHA Architectural Change Request (ACR) form is highly recommended. Click on the link below to obtain a form.

Architectural Change Request Form (PDF)

Completed forms may be sent to Chair, ACC.

PREPARING YOUR HOME FOR SALE
First, ensure that your house and property are in compliance with Covenant provisions. Locate any documents you received from the ACC that document architectural changes that were approved. Notify the Connemara Woods HOA Secretary of your intentions to sell so that a sale packet can be prepared that you will need at settlement. This package must include a letter from the Secretary certifying that your property is in compliance with the Covenants. Early notification of intent to sell will allow the ACC to inspect your property and notify you of any violations in sufficient time that you can get the violations corrected. The settlement can be held up if there are violations that have not been corrected. This has happened in the past.

PURCHASING A HOME IN CONNEMARA WOODS
Assessments for homes in Connemara Woods range from approximately $470,000 to $530,000. When a home goes on the market, Real Estate agents should contact the CWHA Secretary to obtain the required HOA documentation. This documentation includes a copy of the Covenants, Bylaws, and Articles that can be purchased for $50 and a letter certifying that the property is in compliance with the Covenants and Virginia state law. The Secretary can be reached at 703-430-5592 or by email at: mehylton@aol.com .


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Why doesn't Connemara Woods enter into a contract with one refuse collector to get a discount? 
Individuals are responsbile for obtaining their own refuse and recycling service. The Board has investigated contracting with one vendor but all homeowners would have to agree to the vendor. Every homeowner has their own preferred vendor and agreement has not been possible in the past. Also, our community is not large enough to obtain a significant discount.
Current refuse and recycling companies that serve Connemara Woods are:

• AAA Recycling and Trash Removal Services, 703-818 8222
• American Disposal, 703-366-0500
• CSI, 603-444-3181
• Waste Management, 800-969-2069


If I am in compliance with the Covenents with respect to building a fence or making an exterior change, do I need to get approval from the ACC? 
Yes, except as noted in the PPRR. Approval by the ACC ensures that you are in compliance and establishes a record of compliance should you sell your house. Sale of a house is contingent upon getting a letter from the Board of Directors certifying that the property is compliant with conditions set forth in the Covenants and Bylaws.


Are there any changes I can make to my house without getting ACC approval?
Yes. Homeowners can paint with a color that matches the existing exterior color scheme or make repairs to fences or other structures without ACC approval. Any repair should not change the appearance of a fence or other structure. If you are changing the color scheme of your house, you must get ACC approval and use a color from the color chart provided when you purchased your home. The ACC maintains copies of the chart if you lost it.


Are houses/properties inspected regularly for compliance with the Covenants?
Yes. "Walk throughs" are conducted in the Spring and Fall by members of the ACC. Variances from the Covenants and ACC guidelines are noted and these homeowners are sent letters or emails stating what must be done to correct the situation and by when. However, if a member of the Board notices a violation at any time, a notice will be sent by email requesting correction of the violation.


Who is responsible for maintaining the roads and sidewalks?
The Commonwealth of Virginia for the roads and Loudoun County for the sidewalks. Homeowners are respsonsible for maintenance of driveways and for snow removal from driveways and sidewalks on their property.