How Do I?
In a community the size of Walnut Country, there are many things to know. On this page you will find a list of frequently asked questions and answers. Content on this page may not be the most current so please check with the Business Office and CHOA Governing Documents for an official answer.
- Do I need approval to rent my house? What is the process?
Please visit this page for more information about renting out your unit, how to get approval, and all necessary forms.
- How much are monthly dues?
$103/month.The monthly dues increased $6 in January 2021
- How do I pay my monthly dues?
HOA Payment Methods
1. Online One-Time Payment through the HOA’s bank (Checking Accounts Only)
To make a one-time payment directly through the HOA’s bank, please visit this website. There is no need to create an account on this website in order to make a one-time payment. You will need the following information to make a payment, all of which can be found on the monthly statement that is mailed to all owners:
HOA Name: Cowell Homeowners Association, Inc.
Account Number or Unit ID: Provided by Common Interest on your monthly statement, should be 8 digits, numbers only, usually starting with “00”
2. Automatic Payments through the HOA’s bank
To sign up for automatic payments directly through the HOA’s bank, you will need to fill out the “Authorization Agreement for Preauthorized Payments” form provided by Union Bank. You will also need to mail a voided check to Union Bank along with this form. To obtain a copy of this form, please contact email@example.com or call 925-743-3080 to speak with a Customer Service Representative who can mail or email you a copy.
3. Mail a Physical Check
You can always mail a physical check to make a one-time payment. Be sure to make the payment out to Cowell Homeowners Association, not the management company! You will also need to include your 8 digit Account number, which should be on your statement. If you need your Account Number, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 925-743-3080 to speak with a Customer Service Representative.
4. Pay Online by Debit/Credit Card (Fees Charged)
To pay with a credit or debit card, please visit www.commoninterest.com. Select the “PAY ONLINE NOW” link in the upper right hand corner, then select “CLICK TO PAY NOW.” You will be asked to enter your 12-digit owner account number found on your statement (do not insert spaces or dashes) and the official owner’s last name. To make a one-time payment, select “Make One-Time Payment”. To set up a recurring payment, select “Set Up Recurring Payment.” Please note that this payment method is handled by a third party and a convenience fee will be charged when making a payment!.
As always, if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Common Interest’s accounting department at email@example.com or by phone at 925-743-3080.
- Does the Board of Directors get paid?
No. Members of the Board of Directors are volunteer (unpaid) homeowners.
- What’s the process and timeline for HOA violations, penalties, and fines?
A homeowner found in violation of CHOA rules, regulations, policies, or governing documents receives a letter from CHOA’s management company making them aware of the infraction. If the violation has not been corrected, or has been repeated,within 30 days, the homeowner may be invited to meet with the Board of Directors in a closed door, Executive Session meeting. Penalties for violations may include facility access permission denials, ever increasing fines, and other legal measures.
- How do I rent the Clubhouse?
Visit the Clubhouse page for more information and a list of frequently asked questions.
- When is the pool open?
See our Pool information page.
- May I eat, drink or consume alcohol by the pool?
Alcohol is not allowed in any pool areas.
Food and non-alcoholic drinks only are allowed in pool areas, but they must be at least five feet from the water’s edge at all times.
- May I drink alcohol on the Greenbelt or any common areas/facilities?
Alcohol is not allowed on the Greenbelt, at any other common areas, or in CHOA facilities without prior approval from the CHOA Board.
- It looks like the water tower is leaking down its sides, what’s happening and should I call someone?
The leaking is a normal process and there is no need to call someone about water falling down the side.
The water tank in the center of the Greenbelt will probably weep every Wednesday for the foreseeable future. The tank is made of thick redwood planks that are held together with the metal bands that surround the tank. The planks are not joined to each other in any other way.
The tank is filled with water from the well right next to it, and the water is used to irrigate the Greenbelt. Different sections of the Greenbelt are watered every night except Tuesday, because on Wednesday the grass is mowed and needs to be dry.
As a result, the tank never gets more than half full (the well pump operates 24/7), except on Wednesday. From Thursday to Tuesday, the top half or so of the tank remains dry and the redwood shrinks as a result. When the tank begins to fill on Tuesday night, water will leak from the spaces between the dry, shrunken planks until those planks absorb enough water to expand and seal. This is a natural process of redwood tanks. Most of the water weeped is then absorbed back into the ground from which it came.
- How do I change the color of my front door?
You do not need Architectural approval to change the color of your front door. However, garage doors must be the color of either the base color of the house or the trim.
- How do I change the color of my house?
Visit the Business Office to see a book of pre-approved paint colors for your home’s exterior. Then submit an architecture application to the Business Office. If you choose colors that are in the book, the General Manager can approve your application immediately. You may also choose colors that are not in the book. These colors will need to be reviewed and approved by the Architecture Committee at their monthly meeting. The General Manager will then inform you of their decision.
- How do I change my roof?
Download a copy of the Roofing Information from the website, which lists all of the approved roofing materials and colors. Submit an Architectural application with your choice of roof. If your roof is on the approved list, the General Manager will approve your application immediately. Only those roofs on the list will be approved.
- What do I do if I have dry rot?
Dry rot must be repaired or replaced and then painted if it is visible from the sidewalk.
- Who picks up garbage, recycling, and yard waste?
The city of Concord requires all residences to have curbside garbage pickup. There is a city-wide contract with Concord Disposal Services that offers garbage, recycling, and yard waste pickups for a fee based on bin size. For recycling information, see this Concord webpage.
- When is garbage, recycling, and yard waste picked up?
Contact Concord Disposal Services for your waste pickup day.
CHOA Board and Committees
- How do I join the Board?
CHOA Board elections are held every September, usually with either three of four seats up for homeowner voting. To join the Board, you must meet the requirements as a homeowner and fill out an application in the weeks prior to the annual election in September. Be sure to check this site or call the CHOA Office to stay informed of application deadlines.
- When is the next Board of Directors Meeting?
The CHOA Board of Directors meet on the fourth Thursday of every month at 7p in the CHOA Office, except for November and December 2016 – the next meeting is December 8, at 7p. For the next meeting, see our Event Calendar.
- What does a CHOA Committee do?
CHOA Committees are special groups of people who review issues, suggest rules enforcement (in the case of architecture), and make recommendations to the CHOA Board. Committees do not decide whether or not an action should be taken or purchase be made, for example – the CHOA Board ultimately decides on how to move forward if at all.
- Who can be on a committee? How do you join?
Homeowners in good standing may be on a CHOA Committee.
Provided you are a homeowner in good standing, contact the CHOA Office for a committee application. Some committees may require you to attend meetings prior to applying. After the committee approves your application, the CHOA Board reviews the request and ultimately approves committee memberships.
There is no limit to the number of committees that a homeowner may join.