Residential Deed Restrictions

It was recently brought to my attention all residential lots in Pioneertown are subject to deed restrictions that were imposed by the Pioneertown Land Co in 1947.

Here’s a few excerpts with particular relevance to recent discussions about short term rentals:

(b) That all parcels in said tract be used for residential purposes only.
(d) That no one parcel in said tract and no building erected or placed upon any parcel in said tract shall be used or occupied for any commercial, mercantile or manufacturing purpose.
(h) Noxious or offensive activities shall not be carried out upon any parcel nor shall anything be done thereon which may be or become and annoyance or nuisance to the neighborhood.

It goes on to describe remedy for violation(s) and the term in which remedy can be sought:

Violation or any attempted violation of any of the conditions herein contained, it shall be lawful for any person or persons owning any parcel in said tract to prosecute any proceedings at law or in equity against the person or persons violating or attempting to violate any such conditions, and either to prevent him of them from so doing or to recover damages or other dues for such violation. No delay or omission on the part of the Declarant, it’s successors or assigns, in exercising any right or power in the event of a breach of any of the forgoing conditions, shall be construed as a waiver thereof or acquiescence therein, but any breach of conditions occurring shall be construed as continuous in character, and the Declarant, it’s successors or assigns, at any time during the continuance thereof, or upon the occurrence of any subsequent event or breach of conditions may exercise it’s every right of power.

Finally, it also covers how the remaining restrictions stay in effect, even when others have been superseded by modern legislation:

If at any time, any of said paragraphs (a) to (o) inclusive, or any part thereof, shall be adjudged or held to be illegal or invalid, such illegality and invalidity shall in no wise affect or render illegal or invalid any of the other terms, conditions, covenants and restrictions of said paragraphs, or any other paragraph, or any part thereof, but each and all of said other terms, conditions, covenants, and restrictions notwithstanding said illegality or invalidity shall remain in full forces and effect.

I’m an engineer not a lawyer, but it seems to me that those operating short term rentals in Ptown are in clear violation of these restrictions. Also that their continued operation comes at the risk of litigation.

The original documents are actually signed by Dick Curtis, which is pretty cool :sunglasses:
Here’s a PDF of the whole thing for those interested:
ptown_deed_restrictions.pdf (343.5 KB)

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I read those when I bought. The old caucasian-only clause is a shocker. Apparently not uncommon. Something for the folks that DON’T realize the systemic racism concept. It’s right there.

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@Rex_Edhlund Agreed, the racist stuff is shameful! While we still have a ways to go, I’m glad that our society no longer accepts such blatantly bigoted behavior as ‘normal’!

It’s good to know you rec’d a copy of the restrictions when buying. That confirms that the document is indeed on file with the county.

My only prior experience with property restrictions was in modern housing developments, so upon hearing about them, I was skeptical. The Land Co is long gone and we have no HOA, who’s going to enforce them?

After reading the document, doing some research and now hearing from you - it’s pretty clear that the restrictions are attached to the land.

What we don’t know is if a court would see them as valid, because they haven’t been tested.

There is some precedent on this topic, both for and against (I couldn’t find any CA cases). So paragraphs B & D may or may not be upheld by a court.

However, I think paragraph H would probably hold up, given a sufficiently egregious violation.

What does everyone else think?

Thanks for this, I knew about the restrictions, but never read the actual legal paperwork.

The Title Insurance may come into play in these cases.