Proliferation of oversized signs in Incline | SierraSun.com

Proliferation of oversized signs in Incline

Is bigger better?

At times yes, and at times no. When it comes to Incline Village real estate signs, the answer is "No!"

A brief history of the size of signs begins with the original Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CCRs) of each Incline subdivision.

For single-family residences, the CCRs specifically state that the maximum sign size allowed is 216 square inches, which calculates into 12 inches by 18 inches. Like life, real estate has glitches.

The early 80's glitch was the glut of properties for sale. In that period, there were over 900 properties for sale compared with 228 homes and condos, which are on the market today. It appeared as though every property in Incline Village was on the market.

As a result, the real estate community agreed to remove all signs for the betterment of the community. As the market improved, signs reappeared.

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The situation was brought to the attention of the Washoe County Commission and their board passed an ordinance limiting the size of for sale signs on homes and condos, located above 6000 feet elevation, to 144 square inches, or 12 x12. It was determined the ordinance was unenforceable.

Washoe County recently passed an ordinance dictating the size of a sign may not to exceed 2 feet by 3 feet. This is four times larger than what is permitted by subdivision CC&Rs. My understanding is that when there are conflicting rules, the more restrictive rule takes precedence. Therefore, the 216-square-inch maximum is the applicable rule.

What are the consequences if a sign is excessive in size? As an owner, you are subject to a civil lawsuit, which can be instituted only by a homeowner in your subdivision. As a Realtor placing an oversized sign on a home for sale, the Realtor is subject to disciplinary action by the local board of Realtors.

The impact on the community is that gargantuan signs cheapen the appearance of Incline, and some believe lessen the value of real estate. I am a strong proponent of abiding by the rules, which enhance the value of the homes in the Incline community. Smaller is better.

Tom Bruno

Reno