The bylaws of my Home Owners Association also prohibited the installation of Antennas or dishes.
The first thing I did was write to my US Senators. Both replied with the current legislation that was pertinent. One of our Senators (Charles Robb) co-sponsored legislation that (H.R. 1554, The Satellite Copyright, Competition & Consumer Protection Act of 1999). I know it was approved by the Senate, but not sure if it passed in the House of Representatives.
I also live in a townhome and we have a shared roof so FCC doesn't cover us. But my HOA allowed us to install sat dishes. And our HOA has stated that no common antenna is allowed to be installed. "What's a common antenna?"
I am sure they can't stop you, but they can hassle you. You might not get invited to the block party. It should be especially easy if you can put it in place where it won't stick out too much. What a ridiculous rule--one of the nicest developments in my area--several $1-$2 million homes with multiple dishes in full view of the street. Too bad the board is so narrow minded.
Just to clarify, It's ok with my HOA for us to install Sat dishes as long as it's not visible from the street. The only thing they stated is no "common" antenna is allowed to be installed. So if the meaning of common ant is a shared one. Then my antenna installation is fine.
I had this same hassle about 2 years ago. The FCC ruling allows a condo owner to install a dish and/or antenna as long as it is not in a common area. The HOA has a right to dis-allow this. Unfortunately common areas include everything outside your unit except for the patio (if you have one) from the railings to the sidewall. The base of your patio and the railings are yours, the walls, including the windows are common areas. My dish is installed on a railing and technically is illegal because it sticks out over the side of the railing, which is considered a common area. But so far I have managed to avoid a confrontation with the HOA for over a year. The FCC ruling really doesn't leave much room for error.
Homeowner has a set of bylaws which may or may not be legally enforceable, depending on the nature of the restrictions. They can't run afoul of constitutional rights, nor can they enforceably restrict your rights as a homeowner. This would include attempting to restrict rights which the FCC says your association can't restrict.
What does this mean? It means that people can write whatever they want on pieces of paper. The more pertinent question of whether they can enforce their inscriptions is an entirely different issue.
So if some uninformed person/meddler/moron tells you to take your rig down, and points to the provisos in the bylaws, you may confidently state: "ah, but sir--Congress has vested the FCC with broad discretion in this respect, and the FCC says that your bylaws are mere prattle. And you, sir, are an officious intermeddler/uninformed person/moron."
Then you add: "And by the way, who's going to take it down from my home without becoming liable for trespass?"
Then, casually spray some spit off to the side (one of those thhhwfft sprays (cool spit), and add: "Want to try for an injunction? Go ahead, Punk, make my day. Then you hire, say, the great nephew of Thurgood Marshall, and you establish the HDTV equivalent of Brown v. Board of Education. Or you become the Rosa Parks of the HDTV movement.
So, you not only come out the winner, but you get to watch DirecTV all along, and you finally hang yourself from the rafters over watching the demo loop once too often.
Bottom line: put the stuff up, and don't worry about it. You might become famous in the process.
So long as you follow the guidelines in the FCC document already presented, not only can you put up a dish (not to exceed 1 Meter in diameter (except in Alaska, where there is no size restriction)), AND an antenna for receiving LOCAL television stations, and there is ABSOLUTELY ZILCH that your HOA can do !! Not only that, but IF they decide to appeal to the FCC to get the "restrictions approved" (not too likely in any event), you get to keep your dish/antenna until the final ruling comes out. And it's up to them to prove the restrictions are valid - not up to you to prove they aren't. Their "cable is provided" arguement won't fly either. There is also no specification as to a maximum number of dishes - so you Dish network subs who want HD from 61.5/148 are covered also.
You CAN put antennas on your owned and/or controlled property...
Issues such as this also appear in non-HOA situations such as "covenants" or other neighborhood conformance agreements required even when purchasing single family homes.
For anyone who is concerned about just "how" these restrictions are enforced, remember that they all fall under the jurisdiction of the civil courts. Unless the action you take is actually against local city laws, the police are NOT going to come out to your house and arrest you, or force you to take your antennae down.
The most that any HOA (or neighbor in the absence of an HOA) is take you to court with a civil case. The only document they can submit will be the actual agreement that you undoubtedly signed.
Now, if the issue was that you painted your house purple, and the agreement said you could only use earth tones, a judge may very well rule in favor of the agreement.
However, any text in the agreement which restricts antennae installation will undoubtedly be in conflict with the FCC articles already posted by others. Even Judge Judy wouldn't overrule an FCC regulation.
I wonder what the HOAs are saying about those new Sprint Broadband antennas. Most of them seem to be on 10 to 20 foot poles on people's roofs. Will the HOAs just say, "Sorry, hi-tech is not welcome in our neighborhood!"?
the HOA in my neighborhood will not allow anyone to install a dish. they say cable is provided and they are not budging. period.
That was the main reason Congress enacted this provision. They had already passed laws largely prohibiting local regulation of cable TV rates. That helped the cable companies, but they also needed to ensure cable companies didn't have a monopoly. The OTA antenna ruling ensures that cable companies have to deal with competitive pressures.
If it comes to it, you may have to file a "Petition for Declaratory Ruling" with th FCC. In a Declaratory Ruling, the FCC tells your HOA to go to h*ll and quit bothering you, assuming your situation complies with the Rule.
You can get instructions on how to file a Petition on the FCC site. You can also search for already-issued Rulings on this issue, and study the ever-growing case law on this topic. For example, in one ruling, the FCC said it was OK to mount the dish on the outside wall immediately above a patio (i.e., the wall wasn't common area). In another, they said the HOA can make you paint the dish, but can't force you to get a permit before installation.
I've said it before, and as I look forward to going to Europe on vacation in a week I' wondering about it again: why Americans seem uniquely obsessed with what antennas their neighbors install is beyond me. You don't see this anywhere else in the world.
You have a right to install OTA and dish antennas on property under your control.
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