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Homeowners Face Strict Rules With Neighborhood Covenants

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CARY — A flag flap is raising questions about homeowner associations. Al Martin says his neighborhood covenant will not let him fly the American flag in front of his own Cary home.

Other homeowner associations across the country have passed rules to keep garage doors closed, grass cut to a certain length and basketball hoops out of driveways. One community has even banned Christmas lights.

Many people admit the neighborhood rules can feel restrictive, but they still like living there.

"They keep a certain standard to the neighborhood and without standards, we could have problems," says homeowner Dr. Ralph Perhac.

Property manager Nancy Tidwell says 99 percent of the rule disputes get settled before the situation turns ugly. She also say covenants may contain arcane rules but admits most of them are probably not enforced.


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