Frequently Asked Questions
Click the plus sign next to a question to see the answer
A Homeowners Association (HOA) is a legal entity that governs a subdivision, condominium or townhome development, or planned community. HOA membership is mandatory for all property owners within the development. The HOA is run by a board, which is bound by the HOA bylaws, and board positions are filled by election or appointment. The HOA collects a fee assessment from all owners to maintain common areas, address legal and safety issues, and enforce restrictions that are applicable to that particular residential area. The HOA also provides residents with a platform to address common concerns of the community.
For more information click on the links below:Community Associations Institute
Yes, pets are allowed. Reflections tries to be a pet-friendly community. We encourage all pet owners to become familiar with the Rules and Regulations to ensure you are doing your part in keeping our neighborhood looking beautiful Additionally, we ask that pet owners take responsibility for their pets and keep in mind that not everyone likes pets or wants to be near them. A few things to keep in mind:
- Only two pets are allowed per household.
- Pets must be kept on a leash at all times while outdoors.
- Pets should not be tied or staked to Common Areas or left outside unattended at any time.
- Pet owners are required to pick up after their pets. Please keep the neighborhood looking nice.
- Pet owners should take care to only let their pets relieve themselves in the parkway — the area between the sidewalk and the street. (Many people have small children that play on
the front lawns and they have requested this compromise so their children do not end up covered in pet waste.)
- Pets should not be walked in between or behind buildings. This includes along the wetlands and lake.
The City of Darien is in charge of the garbage and recycling contract for our area. Currently, they contract with Veolia Environmental. You can visit their web site for more information on garbage collection in our area.
At Reflections, our garbage day is Thursday. If there is a holiday in a particular week, the garbage will be picked up on Friday. Garbage cans and recycling bins must be stored in your garage until garbage day. We ask that you place these items at the street no earlier than 6 p.m. the night before. They must be collected and put away by the end of garbage day.
Stickers: Darien participates in a “bag and tag” garbage program. This means you will need to purchase garbage stickers to place on your bag or through the handle of your garbage can. These stickers are available from the city or local grocery stores (ask at the checkout line).
A few other things to keep in mind:
- All hard containers — garbage cans and recycling bins — must have your address displayed on them.
- Additionally, all garbage cans must have a lid securely fastened when the trash is placed at the curb for pick up. Residents are responsible for garbage that blows around due to improperly secured lids, not tying down recyclables, or animals ripping into bags.
- Residents are strongly encouraged to purchase 33-gallon hard containers for their trash. We do live near wetlands and with the wild animals in the area, garbage bags are frequently torn into.
- “Bulk Items” require two garbage stickers to be picked up and can be put out for normal pickup. Examples of bulk items are sofas, love seats, chairs, tables and microwaves.
- “White Goods” require five garbage stickers and you must call ARC one day in advance to notify them of the pickup. White goods include refrigerators, ranges, stoves, freezers, air conditioners, water heaters, and other large appliances. These require more stickers because they need to be disassembled by hand due to environmentally harmful materials.
The Association is funded by assessments (dues) paid by each member. Monthly assessments are collected from all owners to maintain common areas, address legal and safety issues, and enforce restrictions that are applicable to the Reflections at Hidden Lake Community. You can review the Annual Budget to ascertain how the money is allocated.
During the winter snow removal becomes a big issue. The Association contracts with a snow removal company. The contract starts in mid-November and ends at the end of March.
- Our snow removal company will only come out after at least two inches of snow has fallen. For larger snowstorms, they will only come out after four inches are on the ground.
- Snow removal will begin after the snow has stopped, or has significantly tapered off.
- Snow will be cleared from the front walkways and driveways, provided no cars are parked there. Our snow removal company will not shovel around parked cars.
- The snowplow operators will work with you. If you normally have a car parked on your driveway, you can ask them to wait until you move your car out of the drive and then let them plow.
- Residents with driveways in close proximity to others who do not move their vehicles may affect the snow plowing in the other driveways. Please be considerate of your neighbors.
- The Association does not put down any salt or ice melt. This was a result of homeowner complaints about tracking salt into their home and irritating their pets feet. We leave it up to individual owners to decide whether or not they want to salt their driveways and front walkways.
Many people move into a condominium community hoping they will never have to do yard work again. Many other people move into a condominium community as a “first home” and welcome the opportunity to cultivate a small garden.
Reflections tries to accommodate both types of homeowners. Lawn care, tree and bush trimming, fertilizing and weed killing are included in your monthly assessments. We only ask that residents water their lawns and landscaping regularly. For those residents that want the opportunity to garden, the landscaped areas in front of and behind the units offer the space necessary for individual plantings. We only ask that you do not enlarge the landscaped areas or plant any sort of fruit or vegetable plants.
Please refer to pages 7 thru 9 of the Rules and Regulations for more important information about landscaping.
Architectural Modification Form (for Exterior Modifications)
As the buildings age, many residents are in the process of making exterior changes to their units (i.e. replacing old front doors, garage doors, windows and patio doors). All items that are not part of the Common elements. If you are contemplating making changes to your unit that impact the exterior, please contact the Management Company first with details of your plan. You must also submit an Architectural Modification Form detailing the planned improvement and submit it to the Management Company for approval. This includes replacing windows, doors, patio doors, skylights, balconies, screen or storm door, or making extensive changes to your landscaping. For exterior work that is the Homeowner’s responsibility, you must receive approval BEFORE beginning the work.
It is important to note that when replacing windows, doors and patio doors, that you must replace them with windows and doors that are identical in appearance to the item you are replacing. As a townhome association we need to work to maintain a sense of unity among the units. That means that front windows must include the white muttons (the internal cross-bars), garage doors must be of the same style and color and front doors should be identical to the door on your unit and be painted the same color. (We have two different front-door styles in the community, depending on your floor plan.) Please note this when ordering replacements. If the incorrect replacement is installed, the Association will require you to remove the non-conforming item and replace it with a conforming item.
In the past, the Association has had a number of people make extensive modifications without getting the necessary approvals first. In some cases, residents have been made to remove modifications, especially if the architectural change does not match the existing appearance of the community. Please save yourself the expense and hassle by clearing any major changes with Management first.
The most cost effective method is to contact the post office at (630) 323-3972 (ask for Mary or Dave). They can arrange to have someone come out and change the lock and provide new keys. The cost is somewhere between $35-50, which is much cheaper than a lock smith.