When the Roland Park Company planned and developed Original Northwood (ON), a Deed and Agreement was created to establish and maintain the quality and character of the community. The covenants were recorded and became a legal addition to each deed relating to property in ON. Since the covenants stay with the property, as property is purchased and resold, each new owner accepts the covenants as a stipulation of the transfer of property ownership.
The covenants set standards for the development of property and any exterior change or alteration. It has protected the aesthetic environment of our neighborhood and is key to the maintenance and improvement of our property values. The protection provided through the covenant is an important element in attracting residents to ON and assuring that it is an outstanding place to live.
These covenants are held and enforced by the Greater Northwood Covenant Association (GNCA), but are administered through the Original Northwood Association (ONA). ONA has drafted Architectural Guidelines to that codify the covenants with regard to exterior alterations and guide the review process. ONA administers oversight, review and approval of exterior property alterations through the Board’s Covenant Committee. All exterior property alterations require that an application be submitted.
You may submit an application for an alteration by completing this form and emailing it to the Covenant chair.
Once an application is submitted, the homeowner will receive confirmation via e-mail or telephone. This typically occurs within 3-5 business days. The application will then be reviewed by the Covenant Committee. This review may require additional information requested from the homeowner. After discussion, the Covenant Committee makes a recommendation to the ONA Board. This recommendation is held to a vote can occur at the monthly board meeting or through e-mail. The result of this vote will then be conveyed to the homeowner. This typically occurs within 3 weeks, depending on the complexity of the project and the responsiveness of the homeowner. Approvals are valid for 6 months from the date of the approval.
Buying or Selling a Home
When buying or selling a home in Original Northwood (ON), it is important to recognize the responsibilities and obligations created by the Deed and Agreement. A copy of the Deed and Agreement should always be provided to buyers at closing and the covenants governing the property explained. It is also helpful if a copy of the Architectural Guidelines is provided.
Sellers and buyers should ensure that the home has no outstanding covenant violations either related to the payment of mandatory maintenance charges to the Greater Northwood Covenant Association (GNCA) or compliance with the Architectural Guidelines. Information concerning the status of maintenance charges should be obtained from the GNCA’s management agent. The Original Northwood Association (ONA) through the Covenant Committee may have issued a letter indicating covenant issues related to the property’s exterior or there may be issues that could be identified. Contacting the Covenant Chair will allow conveyance of this information.
Sellers and buyers should be aware that failure of the ONA to enforce covenant violations does not waive its right to do so in the future. The ONA does not “grandfather” violations. Also, the existence of non-compliant materials does not mean that they can be replaced with like materials or that they are not in violation of the standards. It is a protection to seller and buyer for a seller to obtain a letter from the Covenant Committee at time of sale.
As required by the Maryland Homeowners Act, any outstanding covenant issues must be fully disclosed to the buyer by the seller. We urge home owners to resolve any outstanding covenant issues prior to putting a home on the market.