The WaterColor HOA Board established an Amenity & Occupancy Committee (AOC) to study home rentals and amenity access by renters. The AOC recommended, and the Board approved, changes to address overcrowding, rental access to amenities, and the nightly charge to renters for access to our community and amenities.
A new Annual Rental Certification process will be implemented this year for rentals effective on and after January 1, 2024. This process requires all owners who rent their home in WaterColor and any Rental Management Company partner (if applicable) to certify information related to their rental home. The Annual Rental Certification will be completed each summer and will be used to inform the budgeting process for the coming year. Information derived from the Annual Rental Certification will determine the number of Guest Access Credentials provided for each rental home. The due date for this first Annual Rental Certification is August 31, 2023, which will be submitted electronically.
New terms and definitions will apply to WaterColor rental homes moving forward, including:
Maximum Rental Occupancy: This is the maximum number of people permitted to occupy a WaterColor rental home.
Maximum Rental Occupancy is Calculated as follows:
- Multiply the number of bedrooms on record with the DRB/HOA office x 2 people
- Add 2 people for 1-2 bedroom homes, or 4 people for 3 or more bedroom homes.
- Example: 4-bedroom house: 4 x 2 = 8 + 4 = 12 people
Advertised Number of Rental Guests: Some owners may not want to maximize the number of rental guests in their home, in which case, they may choose to advertise their home for rent to a fewer number of rental guests. The Advertised Number of Rental Guests allows an owner to determine the number of rental guests they are comfortable renting to, which must be less than or equal to the Maximum Rental Occupancy of the home. The Advertised Number of Rental Guests figure must be clearly stated in any and all rental listings or advertisements. The Advertised Number of Rental Guests figure may only be changed in the Annual Rental Certification process each year, when a home changes ownership, or if a bedroom conversion is approved by the DRB.
Access Credential: A wristband, card, or other device used by renters to access WaterColor amenities. Currently this is a wristband.
Guest Access Credential Cost – New Model: The cost per night for Guest Access Credentials will be calculated based on the Advertised Number of Rental Guests shown on the Annual Rental Certification multiplied x the HOA’s established $Price per Guest Access Credential. Owners who advertise and rent to a fewer number of rental guests than the Maximum Rental Occupancy of the home will benefit from a reduced nightly amenity charge. Please note that the total nightly charge for each rental home will be fixed at the beginning of each year to allow for consistent billing and administration, which is how things are presently administered.
Guest Access Credential $Price: The Guest Access Credential $Price is determined by the Finance Committee in their Fall budgeting process each year and approved by the Board. Several factors are involved in determining the amount charged to rental guests for using WaterColor’s amenities, including direct rental expenses, the number of expected rental guests, and the anticipated total number of rental nights. Costs to maintain WaterColor are rising and owners can expect an increase in this charge in 2024.
How to Complete the Rental Certification:
There are 3 steps in the Annual Rental Certification process for owners to complete the Annual Rental Certification. Please complete Steps 1-3 and submit your Annual Rental Certification electronically.
Using the Jot Form link on the Watercolor HOA site: Choose the Blank certification form for your rental home type:
- Homes rented with or without a Carriage House*
- Carriage House only rented – Main house not rented*
*All homes in WaterColor are zoned single family under the Walton County Tourism and Livability Ordinance. Simultaneous rental of a main house to one party and the carriage house to another party is prohibited.
Step 1 – Use the dropdown link in the Home Address box to locate your home. This will self-populate and show the DRB-approved bedroom count on file for your home. The Maximum Rental Occupancy will then be calculated based on the DRB-approved bedroom count of your home.
Step 2 – Complete all of the remaining green boxes on the form (red boxes auto-fill)
Please record as self-managed if you do not use a Rental Management Company.
Step 3 - Sign and submit the electronic form
Step 4 - Annual Rental Certifications will be forwarded to each respective Rental Management Company for their certification of information provided on your home and compliance with rental advertising content.
If you have questions while you are completing the Annual Rental Certification, please email WaterColorRentalCertification@gmail.com. This is a dedicated email address for the Annual Rental Certification process. Please do not contact the HOA office staff as they are busy managing the current high season summer requirements. If you have feedback about the new Ammenity and Occupancy policies, please submit them to the Ammenity and Occupancy Committee Feedback/Suggestion Form.
If you do not agree with the bedroom count on record with the DRB/HOA, there is an established process called a “Bedroom Conversion” under which you can submit a request to modify this through the HOA/DRB. Your home will need to meet the DRB’s definition of a Bedroom and on-site parking requirements.
This link contains the WaterColor Design Guidelines related to Bedroom Conversions including the associated parking requirements.