Clothes LineNew legislation signed into law on October 8, 2015 by Governor Brown prohibits homeowners associations from banning the use of clotheslines and drying racks by homeowners in their backyards. Any portion of an association’s CC&R’s that prohibits clotheslines and/or drying racks will be considered null and void once the Bill (Civil Code section 4750.10) becomes effective on January 1, 2016.

The new Civil Code section 4750.10 defines a clothesline as a “cord, rope or wire from which laundered items may be hung to dry or air.” A drying rack is “an apparatus from which laundered items may be hung to dry or air.” The new section specifically states that balconies, railings, awnings, or any other parts of a structure are not to be considered drying racks. It should also be noted that the new section applies only to backyards that are for the exclusive use of the owner.

Associations are allowed to adopt reasonable restrictions regarding clotheslines and drying racks provided that they do not significantly increase the homeowner’s cost of using them. Boards may want to consider adopting rules regarding the installation and maintenance of these items. To have restrictions in place by the January 1, 2016 effective date, the 30-day rule adoption process will need start by November 30, 2015.

To review AB 1448 in its entirety click here.

To review Civil Code section 4750.10 click here.