The Orchard Brook Home Association covenants include sections designed to protect the common areas for the enjoyment of all, and maintain the appearance of the community.
The covenants give the OBHA board the responsibility and authority to enforce these guidelines. In accordance with Article X of the Covenants, procedures are in place for residents to request approval of architectural changes.
Changes to Orchard Brook Properties must be approved by the Board
Architectural changes that must be approved are any changes the alter the outside appearance of the property, including physical changes to the building, significant landscaping changes, or any change that could have any impact on the value of or quality of life of surrounding properties. Of particular concern are any changes that may affect water flow in the immediate area.
Please remember that homeowner modification of the common areas or homeowner encroachment into the common areas is not permitted. The common areas are for everyone’s enjoyment.
Architectural Change Procedure
Getting approval is EASY! Just complete the form (below) and forward it to Tony Porcelli, Architectural Committee, 3636 Duchess Court, Downers Grove, IL 60515.
The Architectural Committee will review the request to ensure that the requested changes are in compliance with the Amended Covenants. If there are no apparent violations, you can expect speedy approval of your request.
The following items are examples or situations that require the timely submission of an Architectural Change Request Form (ACRF) and Board approval before conducting the work:
- Any work that touches, encroaches on, or impacts the common area in any way
- Home additions and exterior remodels
- Replacing/painting siding, trim, shutters, and gutters
- Replacing/adding windows, roofs, and patios, and retaining walls (including structural or purely decorative walls)
- Installing satellite dishes
- Installing underground structures, including invisible dog fences
- Installing any swing set or other playground equipment (including, but not limited to trampolines, as well as equipment acquired from another homeowner)
- Fences, which are generally prohibited, where the homeowner has a request that the Board create an exception to the “no/fence” rule because the property is affected by Interstate 88 or other extraordinarily unattractive, noisy, nuisance, or hazardous situations
- Installing a flag pole
- Installing/Re-designing concrete/paver/asphalt patios, driveways and walkways
- Decks – repair, replace or installation — and hot tubs
- Changes impacting the flow of water across or through properties and/or the common area
- Planting/removing trees and significant shrubbery
- Installation of a hospitality light (only permitted in the front yard)
- Additions or changes impacting or proposed to go over any easements (including public utility, surface drainage, or other)
- Major landscaping changes
- Any plantings that may impact a neighbor’s property, a neighbor’s site line to the common area, or the common area
Again, the above are simply examples of changes that require advance architectural approval by the Board. The Board analyzes and reviews each request independently and it is guided by the covenants in making these determinations.
There are several prohibited items listed in the covenants and those items are not reflected above. Please review the covenants for prohibited items.
Finally, when in doubt regarding whether a proposed change (a) requires advance Board approval or (b) is prohibited by the covenants, contact the Chair of the Architectural Committee and/or the President of the Board.
Get Approval FIRST!
Getting approval BEFOREHAND is certainly in your best interest. Your elected Board is required to follow up and take action on violations as they are noted. In the extreme, this might even mean a homeowner would be required to undo something they may have labored over or invested in. You can be assured that your Board is not interested in interfering in your home improvement projects or making them more difficult. Their responsibility is to ensure all Homeowners comply with the Covenants that YOU have approved, so that Orchard Brook remains the special place that it is.
If you have any doubt about whether an Architectural Change Request Form is required, use the Architectural Committee Contact Form to get an opinion.
You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to open this file, which can be downloaded free of charge:
The Board has adopted a policy with respect to homeowners wishing to install solar energy systems. Follow this link to learn more: OBHA SOLAR ENERGY POLICY
The Board appreciates the cooperation of all Homeowners. Read your Covenants , and understand the architectural guidelines. If you have any questions about Orchard Brook property requirements, use the Architectural Committee Contact Form, or send your question to the entire OBHA Board.