Spring 2007 Chronicle
Since buying my home in Crestbrook in 1983 I have seen our association increase to over 400 homes, watched many houses change owners, seen our Board of Directors change officers numerous times, witnessed the growth of Cascades and Ashburn and the development of the Dulles Town Center as well as driven on the expanded four lanes of Dranesville Road. Our homes have increased in value because of the growth around us, our board of directors maintaining the covenants of the association and the efforts of all homeowners keeping their property neat and clean. As incoming president I hope that all homeowners will join with the 2007 board of directors and continue to preserve their homes to make Crestbrook one of the most sought after communities to live in.
POST OFFICE BOX
Anyone choosing to mail the Board anything should send it to Crestbrook Homes Association, PO Box 1447, Herndon, VA, 20172-1447. The mail is checked once a week during the winter and more often other times of the year. If you are following up on correspondence that you have sent to the board you can call 703- 935-0219.
The board meets on the third Tuesday of the month unless otherwise indicated. The meetings are held in the Dranesville Elementary School cafeteria at 7:00 PM. The dates are listed below. The meeting on July 17th will take place at the Herndon Fortnightly Library rather than at the school because the school will be closed during the summer. The first 30 minutes are open to residents. All residents are welcome; however, after the first 30 minutes normal board activities will be resumed. Please respect everyone’s time and abide by these timelines.
Marlene Cox, HOA President
CURRENT BOARD MEMBERS
The 2007 Board has several new members as well as former officers who have switched positions.
Marlene Cox Chelle Youmans Vacant James Horstman Gene Rigoni Christine Ramoski Mike Horton Wayne Wallace Dana Malec Steve Geyer
President First Vice President Second VP Secretary Treasurer Neighborhood Watch Coordinator Architectural Review Committee Covenants Violations East Covenants Violations West Member at Large Website Coordinator
Schedule of HOA Board Meetings:
Held at Dranesville Elem. at 7 PM (unless otherwise noted)
Tuesday, Mar. 20 Tuesday, April 17 Tuesday, May 15 Tuesday, June 19 Tuesday, July 17* Tuesday, September 18 Tuesday, October 16 Tuesday, November 13 Tuesday, December 18 *=meeting to be held at Herndon Fortnightly Library Come meet the New Board and share your concerns. Let’s all get involved!
The current board would like to thank Christine Ramoski for her duty last year as President. Christine has chosen to change positions and be the Neighborhood Watch Coordinator this year.
The Crestbrook Homes Association’s website is www.crestbrook.org. Homeowners can view community news and information and also download the Architectural Review Form. Any questions regarding the website should be directed to the attention of Steve Geyer.
SPRING CLEAN UP
Even though we are just breaking free from winter, spring is just around the corner. The following are some items homeowners may want to consider looking at when the warm weather arrives. Overgrown or dead bushes should be pruned. Shrubs should be neat, and grass should be mowed regularly once it starts to grow. Weeds and grass should be removed from flower beds, driveways, and along the sidewalk. Some areas in the yard may need additional bags of mulch to reinforce bare spots. The cub scouts and boy scouts thank you for supporting their organizations! Peeling paint on trim, garage doors, and moldings should be touched up. Broken shutters and vents should be replaced. Fences need to be in good repair and comply with our covenants. Front yard fences are not allowed. Miscellaneous yard junk such as old plastic tables, chairs, old grills, and empty mulch bags should be disposed of properly.
The primary goal of this board is to examine and, if necessary, revise the Articles, Covenants and Bylaws. These documents were first incorporated in 1977 over 30 years ago. This is no small task and will be dealt with carefully, slowly and most important -- legally. The board hopes to present their changes to the homeowners at the annual meeting in November so that the changes may be voted on then. Other goals include enhancing awareness of Neighborhood Watch, decreasing the number of covenant violations, and increasing homeowner/board solidarity.
The board would like each homeowner to take a few minutes to inspect their property and pick up any debris that may be on it. Debris can be in the form of dead leaves which need to be raked, pine cones, small trash, cigarette butts, and old newspapers left in the street.
SELLING YOUR HOME /DOCUMENT PACKAGES
Every owner in Crestbrook is required by our Covenants and Virginia State Law to provide a current copy of the Disclosure Package to buyers before settlement. The disclosure package includes the Covenants, Articles of Incorporation, By-laws, the current Board and Dues information and certification of the Board’s site survey of your home. The Board must verify that dues have been paid and conduct a site survey of the exterior of your home to certify that there are no current violations. Anything that is in violation of the Covenants and was not approved by the Board can be “failed” and we will require compliance before settlement. This is why the Architectural Review Form is so important – to ensure that exterior home improvements are within neighborhood guidelines . These disclosure packages cost $50 and we have 15 days to respond.
Sidewalks are required to be kept clear and accessible at all times. If your trees are hanging down so low people have to duck under them to get by, they need to be pruned. Vehicles parked in driveways should not block the sidewalk. In the (unlikely) event of snow, please shovel your sidewalks. Kids need to walk to catch their school buses and we don’t want them exposed to danger by walking in the streets.
The board has decided to hold two yard sales this year rather than one as in previous years. The spring yard sale is scheduled for May 19th with a raindate of May 20th. In the fall, the yard sale weekend is September 29th with the raindate on September 30th. Signs will be posted at the entrances to the development on both sides of Dranesville Road. Ads will be placed in the local papers. All you need to do is set up from 8:00 AM to 12 noon.
Holidays are wonderful to celebrate but we ask that decorations be removed 30 days after the event. HINT – if your Christmas decorations (lights, wreaths, etc…) are still up, they need to be down by March 31st.
CUL DE SAC PARKING
The board is becoming increasingly aware that residents in cul de sacs are parking perpendicular to the curb. Fairfax County requires all vehicles to be parked parallel to the curb. This gives emergency vehicles like fire trucks room to turn around in dead end streets. The fire marshal has no problem ticketing violators. Please keep everyone safe by parking vehicles correctly.
Collect and track all payables and receivables such as liability insurance (required), legal expenditures, PO box rental, office supplies, newsletter costs, Disclosure Package income Prepare the annual budget Prepare and deliver all Disclosure Packages (required for every house that sells) and conduct site inspections Cite covenant violations, write and mail letters, respond to angry home owners and law suit threats Plan, manage and complete all special projects (i.e. yard sales) Respond to all Architectural Request Forms, usually requires a site visit and more information from the owners
COVENANTS COMPLIANCE IS A SHARED RESPONSIBILITY
Each homeowner shares the responsibility of complying with the rules of our community, and assist our neighbors in complying with those rules. If you see a neighbor engaging in an activity which you believe is in violation of our bylaws, you should call the board and request that the activity in question be investigated. This is not “turning in your neighbor”; it is helping him/her avoid the expense or inconvenience of correcting what may subsequently be found to be a violation and ensuring that your rights of enjoyment, as set forth in the Bylaws are not infringed upon. This is a good neighborhood; let’s all work together to keep it that way!
BOARD DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
The board is comprised of volunteers. What do they do? Most of their duties are behind the scenes, but their responsibilities are covered by the by-laws and covenants. Here is a list of their tasks. Monitor, route and respond to all phone and written requests from owners, realtors, lawyers, settlement companies etc. Attend meetings with developers, county or state agencies and neighboring board associations to address common issues Hold Board meetings every month File all records for the community including all Architectural Review Forms, taxes, dues payments, letters and correspondence of all kinds Pay federal and state taxes, Prepare and mail 400+ dues letters, collect dues, balance accounts
The current annual dues are $40.00 per household. Notices for dues will be mailed by March 31st. Payment is required by April 30, 2007. Checks should be sent to Crestbrook Homes Association, Attention: Treasurer, PO Box 1447, Herndon, VA 20172-1447. Homeowners are also reminded that the Crestbrook Homes Association Address for which payment is made is noted on the check. In past years checks had business addresses on them and the treasurer was not sure which homeowners dues were paid because there was no address on the outside envelope. Dues cover the cost of taxes, the newsletter, postage, office supplies, liability insurance for the Board of Directors, lawyer’s fees, post office box rental and such other expenses as may arise incident to the Board’s actions on behalf of the membership.
Just a reminder that any changes made to the exterior of the home including color, fencing and free standing structures must be approved by the Architectural Review Committee. The request forms are available at www.crestbrook.org and at the end of this chronicle. Mike Horton, Architectural Review Committee
Neighborhood Watch (NW)
Crestbrook continues into its third year with an active NW program and is looking forward to hosting National Night Out (NNO) on August 7th. Anyone interested in helping to organize or volunteer for our community event is encouraged to either call the main number for Crestbrook HOA at 703-935-0219, or self-register with CBNW yahoo group at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/CrestbrookHOANW and post an email. Self-registering with CBNW yahoo group will keep you connected with the NW efforts. Chris Ramoski, Crestbrook’s NW coordinator, attends monthly meetings with the Reston District Police Station and posts the monthly Reston Reliance newsletters for the Yahoo group users. The group usage also permits you to ask questions about our program, volunteer for events, provide feedback, and permits a means of communicating crimes and incidence that affect Crestbrook and our neighbors. This year’s NW goals include: Participating in National Night Out – Tuesday, Aug 7th Developing working relationships with neighboring NW programs Exploring community service opportunities
Home Invasion: January, Mason Mill Court. Suspect was apprehended, and admitted to trying to enter into several homes before finding an open door to gain access. Kingston Chase Community: January, Children approached by blue van while walking home from Clearview Elementary on Builders Road
Free Home Security Checks A trained officer will inspect the locks, doors and windows of your home with you. Exterior lighting, landscaping, alarms and other factors affecting the protection of your home from burglary will also be reviewed. The officer will make recommendations for improving your home security. You can arrange for a free inspection, at your convenience, by calling the Reston District Station Crime Prevention Office at (703) 478-0799. Personal Safety Tips for Everyone to Remember! Even when you are home, lock your doors. By locking your doors you are diminishing the possibility of someone entering your home while you are in the garage, taking a shower or folding laundry in an upstairs bedroom. Remember to close your garage doors. If someone knocks at your door, identify them PRIOR to opening the door. IF you do not recognize him/her, you don’t have to open the door. Simply tell them to go away. If they are in a uniform (UPS, FedEx, etc) you should ask for company ID and/or call the business to verify that they sent someone to your home. Always acknowledge a knock at your door. You do not have to open the door to let someone know you are home. By acknowledging the knock you are telling a potential burglar that someone is home and it may prevent them from trying to make entry. If you go on vacation you should have your mail and newspaper picked up by a neighbor. If you do not have a neighbor who can pick up your mail/newspaper you should stop your service. You do not want to have papers/mail accumulate on your doorstep or in your mailbox. Never advertise that you are not home, home alone or live alone. When acknowledging a knock at the door, say something like “we cannot come to the door right now, please return later.” When leaving a recording on your answering machine say something as simple as “Leave a message.” Or say “We cannot answer the phone, please leave a message.” Do not advertise that
"Remember, after reporting Crestbrook crime incidents to appropriate emergency or county authorities, please report the incident by email to email@example.com, or call 703935-0219. Our neighborhood watch coordinator will follow up with you and the appropriate authorities. Remember these important numbers: Emergency: 911 Non-emergency: 703-691-2131 (enter it on auto-dial/ enter it into your cell phone) BE AWARE and STAY SAFE! The following crimes and incidences were reported by Crestbrook Neighbors and neighboring communities. Vehicle Tampering: October, Several vehicles were vandalized and tampered with within the area of Browns Ferry, Misty Water, and Rock Ridge Road Home vandalism: November, Paintball on front window, Powells Tavern Place
you live alone and do not put your name on your answering machine. If you see a suspicious person or vehicle, or you hear a suspicious noise, call the police. Be a good neighbor. Especially to your elderly neighbors.
“KAW” Graffiti Case: Suspect has been identified and charged in the Town of Herndon. Charges in Fairfax County are pending. Several properties within Crestbrook were hit with the "KAW" graffiti that occurred last July. It is time that these properties work to clean up the graffiti on or near their properties. Please contact the NW group if you need support in this effort. Members of the board and other home owners have power washers that we can try and make arrangements to borrow.
Crestbrook Homes Association
Architectural Review Request Form
Per the Crestbrook Homes Association Covenants, certain additions and modifications to Lots must be granted approval in writing from the Architectural Review Committee. Prior to granting approval, the Committee may request additional information and a site survey of the premises. All improvements and additions must conform to Fairfax County Code. Name: Address: Phone: E-mail: Date:
Improvement or Addition:
_____ Deck/Porch/Patio _____ Fence _____ Shed _____ Swimming Pool _____ Siding _____ Shutters _____ Satellite Dish _____ Roof _____ Exterior Paint _____ Other (specify) Details:
For all improvements and additions, include a copy of plans, drawings and/or samples, before and after colors, and dimensions as appropriate, with sufficient detail for the Committee to understand your request. Plans or drawings should include the impact of the improvements or additions to your neighbor’s house(s) and the street. Include materials and sufficient construction detail so the Committee can ascertain structural integrity (county code compliance will suffice). Approval or disapproval by the Architectural Control Committee shall also be in writing. Submit request and plans to: Crestbrook Homes Association P.O. Box 1447, Herndon, VA 20170-1447 PLEASE KEEP A COPY FOR YOUR RECORDS Please note your application may not be reviewed if the following information is not included in sufficient detail. __ Plan View __ Existing Color __ Sketch __ Proposed Color __ Samples __ Dimensions
Approval Signature Signature Signature Date Date Date