QUESTION: It says in our CC&Rs that no political signs are allowed. The association does not want political signs cluttering up the property. Is that allowable?
ANSWER: Although associations can prohibit signs in the common areas, they cannot prohibit political signs, posters, flags or banners on or in an owner's separate interest unless (i) made of lights, roofing, siding, paving materials, flora, or balloons, or any other similar building, landscaping, or decorative component, or include the painting of architectural surfaces, or (ii) signs or posters are more than nine square feet in size or flags or banners that are more than 15 square feet in size. (Civ. Code §4710.) In addition, signs, posters and flags displaying obscenity or fighting words can be restricted.
Time Limits. Associations can set reasonable time periods for the display of political signs. Many cities have regulations requiring the removal of signs between 5 and 15 days after the election. Some also limit the posting of political signs 45 to 90 days before an election. Associations may adopt similar restrictions in their rules and regulations.
Number of Signs. In addition to limiting the size, composition, and location of signs, it appears associations can regulate the number of signs. (Fourth La Costa v. Seith.)
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