The declaration and by-laws should explain your rights and obligations. Some Condo Presidents, in a misguided attempt to keep up uniformity may err on interpretation. Check your documents.
Your patio is probably on Common Area. However, you must of had permission to build a patio for your use. At that time, it was the condo's responsibility to provide the usage requirements as part of that approval. They may still set rules for future patios, but yours should be grandfathered subject to the conditions set at the original buildout. Anything in the Regs? I dout it.
Depends on the language of your Declarations, By-Laws and Rules and regulations and very likely yes. But maybe not.
See the last thread about property damage and the differences between unit owner property, common areas and limited common areas. If the patio is a limited common area and they often are, they can regulate what you keep there, the colors you paint it with and even make you maintain and repair it. Even if it is part of your unit , the documents might have language regulating what you can do.
So you have to read those. If I were you I would ask the president for clarification and on what basis he is claiming authority. Generally it has to be the board of administrators or a managing agent that can use that authority. What does this new president propose to do if you do not follow her dictates? And what do the other board members say about this? She is not a dictator, the decisions have to be backed by the documents and administrated through the board or their managing agent, if any.
As with so many of these questions I would like to propose a new acronym as a response:
RYDF Read Your Documents First
Typically how you can treat outdoor space or anything showing on the outside including window treatments, hanging out laundry, etc. is outlined in the condo docs. It is always in the best interest of an association to have some sort of uniformity from unit to unit. You might have a bit of freedom with patio furniture, planters. Like the others have said, read the condo docs.
Okay, you elude to the fact that you have read your CCR's. Have you asked the President was the basis was for that ruling. In other words, show you in the Board documents.
Now we get into the "condo or townhouse" debate. ;-)
Assuming your property is a 'true' condominium, then you have a front door which exits into a hallway, not straight to the parking lot. If so, then everything outside the walls of your condo is common area. If you have a balcony which is only accessible by entering through your condo or by using a ladder, then that is "limited" common area. All are subject to the 'rules and regulation' documents of your HOA.
Assuming your property is a "true" townhouse, then your front door exits directly to a sidewalk and subsequent parking lot. Now it becomes a matter of how your property is described in your deed. Usually, all exteriors surfaces are common area unless your deed and your county tax records show acreage. With acreage assigned, you probably own the patio area but you are still subject to the 'rules and regulation' documents of your HOA.
So the bottom line is no matter what, you will have to follow your HOA documents. However, you could ask the Board for an architectural change to accommodate what you want to do.
Wait there's more! You talk about a fence. If there is fencing around the perimeter of your patio, that now becomes your backyard and the HOA's power to control becomes less. With a backyard, as long as what you do can be seen from the street the HOA will have something to say. Example: you could paint your patio blue and because it is in your backyard, which is your property, the HOA would have nothing to say.
I suspect the fence you describe is probably a common fence along the back of all the townhouses in your row. In which case the HOA can probably control.
You definitely need to do more research.
John Mastro is correct. You indicated what your CC&R said but your didn't say anything about your By-Laws and the Rules and Regulations. It takes all three sets of document to make up your governing documents and the combination of all three are what you live by.
You moved into a governed community. These rules, laws and regulations are meant for the good of all, not a few. GR
I cannot understand why people move into a condo or HOA and start trying to change all the rules. They should know what a condo is when they buy. If they don't like the rules, MOCE and stop whining..
First things first, I agree with Jim. I will never understand why folk move into condos, don't read the governing documents, and then complain about its contents when they finally get around to doing so (usually after their first violation!)
The rules are there for a reason, not because they want to make your life difficult.
If you do not want to follow the rules, buy a standalong house, paint it pink, hang your plants, put a plastic zebra on your lawn, and do whatever you want.
As everyone else has said. READ your documents! What does it say about this topic? If there is not mention of it, your President is out of line. If there is mention of it, you are out of line.
For your general reference, in my condo association, the documents are very clear and spell it all out. You may hang holiday deco for a specific timeframe. All other deco on decks, in windows, etc. must be tasteful and the Board of Directors have final say as to what is considered tasteful.
I don't always agree with the BOD, but I understand that I bought a condo, and I have to accept their final decisions or move out.