Nov 172018
 
✉ by Bill Coan, Chair, Architecture Committee

In 2018 the Architecture Committee received 18 requests for exterior changes to light fixtures, fences, gates, walls, and windows. The committee also received numerous inquiries about rules for contractors involved in interior remodeling projects.

The committee’s deliberations were guided by SMVE’s Architectural Design Notes, which describes considerations that apply to specific issues, such as adding a room, raising a wall, changing exterior lights, etc. If you’re considering a change to the exterior of your property, this document will help you understand the neighborhood’s architectural standards and what kinds of changes the Architecture Committee is empowered to approve.

The Architecture Committee devoted considerable energy in 2018 to enforcing the HOA’s rules against placing dumpsters and roll-off containers in driveways. With as many as a dozen or more construction projects underway at any given time, such containers can have a significant negative impact on the appearance of the neighborhood and on quality of life for all homeowners. Contractors should always be advised to place such containers in the garage or out of sight behind a locked gate and wall. For more information, see: Use of Roll-Off Containers and Dumpsters

One of the most common questions asked of the Architecture Committee in 2018 was, “Does my architectural project need to be approved?”

IMPORTANT: Whether your project needs to be approved or not, all work on your property must be carried out in accordance with the guidelines in the SMVE Architectural Process Checklist and Contractor Checklist. For more information, see Architectural Process Checklist and Contractor Checklist.

An interior project that has no effect on the exterior of a home is not a matter of concern to the Architecture Committee, except that all work on such a project must be carried out in accordance with the guidelines in the SMVE Architectural Process Checklist and Contractor Checklist. For more information, see Architectural Process Checklist and Contractor Checklist.

The following exterior projects do not require pre-approval of the Architecture Committee: Routine maintenance of an exterior item; replacement of an exterior item with an identical item; painting, staining, or sealing an exterior surface with a finish listed at SMVE Approved Exterior Finishes and Paint Colors.

All other exterior architectural changes require review and pre-approval by the Architecture Committee. Both small exterior changes (a new window shape, a new gate, etc.) and large exterior changes (a new room, a new pool, new yard walls, etc.) must be submitted to the Architecture Committee for review prior to the commencement of construction.

To streamline communications between homeowners and the Architecture Committee, and to guide homeowners in securing approval for exterior architectural changes, the committee offers several fill-in-the-blank forms for homeowner use: