Subdivision associations levy annual fees and special assessments to maintain common land and facilities in the subdivision and to enhance the quality of life for residents. An elected Board of Trustees collects and manages the funds on an annual basis. Annual fees are typically used for such expenses as cutting grass and maintaining landscaping on common ground, maintaining subdivision signs, providing street lighting, duplicating and mailing subdivision newsletters and meeting notices, supporting block parties and other subdivision-sponsored social events, and hiring attorneys or other professional services.
Private subdivisions may use their annual fees to maintain private streets, or to pay for trash pick-up or snow removal. Special assessments may be levied periodically and are typically used for major capital improvements, such as replacement or improvements to subdivision signage, fencing, detention facilities, retaining walls, and recreational facilities.
When subdivision residents do not pay their fees, they become delinquent in payment, unless there is a grace period following the assessment due date. After a certain period of delinquency, a lien can be filed against they property. The assistance of an attorney is generally necessary when drafting a lien, especially if the subdivision association has not yet filed other liens that could be used as templates.
All liens in St. Louis County are recorded with the St. Louis County Recorder of Deeds Office. Once a property has a lien placed on it, that property cannot be sold until the lien is cleared. Typically, to clear a lien, all back assessments and interest must be paid by the resident.