Under current law, a unit owners' association (association) of a common interest community may not prohibit the use of xeriscape, nonvegetative turf grass, or drought-tolerant vegetative landscapes to provide ground covering to property for which a unit owner is responsible. There is, however, an exception authorizing an association to adopt and enforce design or aesthetic guidelines or rules that apply to nonvegetative turf grass and drought-tolerant vegetative landscapes or to regulate the type, number, and placement of drought-tolerant plantings and hardscapes that may be installed on a unit owner's property, on a limited common element, or on other property for which the unit owner is responsible.
The act states that an association's guidelines or rules must:
Not prohibit the use of nonvegetative turf grass in the backyard of a unit owner's property;
Not unreasonably require the use of hardscape on more than 20% of the landscaping area of a unit owner's property;
Allow a unit owner an option that consists of at least 80% drought-tolerant plantings; and
Not prohibit vegetable gardens in the front, back, or side yard of a unit owner's property.
The act requires an association to develop at least 3 garden designs that are preapproved by the association for installation in front yards within the common interest community. To receive preapproval, a garden design must adhere to the principles of water-wise landscaping or be part of a water conservation program operated by a local water provider.
A unit owner who is affected by an association's violation of the act's requirements may, after providing the association notice of and a 45-day period to cure the violation, bring a civil action to restrain further violation and to recover up to $500 or actual damages, whichever is greater.
The act's provisions apply only to a unit that is a single-family detached home and do not apply to:
A unit that is a single-family attached home that shares one or more walls with another unit; or
A condominium.
APPROVED by Governor May 17, 2023
EFFECTIVE August 7, 2023
NOTE: This act was passed without a safety clause and takes effect 90 days after sine die. (Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Statutes affected:
Preamended PA1 (03/29/2023): 37-60-126
Preamended PA2 (04/19/2023): 37-60-126, 37-60-115
Introduced (03/03/2023): 37-60-126
Engrossed (04/03/2023): 37-60-126, 37-60-115
Reengrossed (04/04/2023): 37-60-126, 37-60-115
Revised (04/24/2023): 37-60-126, 37-60-115
Rerevised (04/26/2023): 37-60-126, 37-60-115
Final Act (05/04/2023): 37-60-126, 37-60-115
Signed Act (05/17/2023): 37-60-126, 37-60-115