Frequently Asked Questions
Elsewhere in our website we explore these questions more fully, but here are a few quick answers.
1 - The story of Creekside
chevron_rightWhen was Creekside built?
Creekside Village was planned in the 1980s as a stylish senior community alongside Rodgers Creek just southwest of the city of Sonoma. On 29 acres once intended as a golf course, some 313 home were built between 1981 and 1989 on variants of six mostly two-bedroom floor plans, along with a pond, clubhouse, pool, common areas, open spaces and extensive walking paths.
chevron_rightIs there a story behind its distinctive landscaping?
Creekside's original landscape design was created in 1980 by Michael Painter (1935-2018), a Fellow of the American Society of Landscape Architects, for Fisher Development, Inc. Among his notable projects in the Bay Area are the AT&T Administrative Center, the Genentech Campus, the HP Corporate Headquarters, and the Great Highway/Ocean Beach Reconstruction.In 1987, Fisher Development began the second phase of Creekside Village, working with the award-winning landscape architecture firm, Jonathan Plant & Associates Inc., in St. Helena. Plant has created many projects in Northern California, commercial and residential. Among his well-known commercial projects are French Laundry, Far Niente Winery, Freemark Abbey and Stag’s Leap.
2 - How to be active in our community
chevron_rightTransparency is so important. How are Creeksiders all kept in the loop?
Most every month Creekside residents receive a substantial newsletter, called the CURRENTS, by email. It may include news of recent board and committee actions, announcements of upcoming events, a calendar, photos of recent social events, feature stories, and creative contributions from residents often in the form of a painting or original writing.Creekside has also expanded its website to provide timely information to residents and to portray Creekside in a positive light to the general public. The website even includes issues ot the CURRENTS back to February of 2015. Find them under the NEWS tab above.Email "eblasts" from our General Manager are our fastest communications tool here at Creekside. Therefore we encourage all residents to send their email address to our manager (using CONTACT US above) and get on his list so he may include you in his next eblast.
chevron_rightHow much is the responsibility of the HOA? of the landscape committee?
The landscaping in all common and open areas is the responsibility of the HOA. The HOA is served by the Landscape Committee, which oversees the services of a landscape contractor.A "common area” includes all real property owned by the Association for the common use and enjoyment of Creekside's owners and residents. An “open area” means that portion of a lot, excluding the yard and driveway, which lies between the street and an owner's fence or wall.
chevron_rightWhat sort of social activities are organized community-wide?
Our Social Committee plans special events such as holiday parties, seasonal potlucks and Happy Hour. Check out the SOCIAL COMMITTEE page on this website. We also enjoy a variety of clubs, interest groups, outdoor recreation opportunities and much more. Find them under the LIFESTYLE tab above. All events and activities are of course open to all homeowners and residents.
chevron_rightHow can I start a club? or advocate for a class or music event or lecture?
We're happy that the clubhouse is again available. So when there is support for new activities, it's likely the board will be happy to consider endorsing them.
chevron_rightWho serves on the board? on committees? how can I contact them? or join them as a member?
The board is comprised of five residents serving two-year terms, chosen in annual elections. You can contact them through the General Manager using CONTACT US above. If you wish to serve on the board, the General Manager would enthusiastically receive your inquiry and put you in touch with the Nominating Committee. Similarly, if you would serve on a committee, please ask the General Manager to contact the appropriate committee chair.
chevron_rightI have an idea that might enrich our community life .. where do I go with it?
Start with our General Manager using CONTACT US. He will guide you.
3 - Creekside is so beautifully landscaped
chevron_rightWhom can I contact if the landscape maintenance in my neighborhood seems neglected?
If the landscape maintenance in a neighborhood needs attention, a homeowner or resident should contact the General Manager using CONTACT US above.
chevron_rightWhat may I do within my fence, in my own yard and garden?
Generally speaking, there are few limits on how homeowners may landscape their own yards as long as their installations are not visible from the street or run counter to the uniform appearance of the community.
4 - Living together in an HOA community
chevron_rightAre there lots of rules?
In any community like ours, rules are necessary to help things run smoothly. Creekside's rules may be found under the HOA tab above, comprehensively in GOVERNING DOCUMENTS: RULES AND POLICIES and separately concerning architecture, the clubhouse, landscaping, pets and the pool and spa. Really, the number of rules here is quite modest. But if they seem burdensome, bear in mind their intention is to create a framework within which we can all live together harmoniously.
chevron_rightHow about architecture rules in particular?
Because we all benefit from our community’s unique and coordinated appearance, you’ll need pre-approval from the Architectural Committee before you begin any construction or remodeling that’s visible from outside your fence.
chevron_rightWhat’s the approval process if I want to paint my house?
There's an excellent "quick start" guide to help you with painting or staining your house. You can find it under COMMITTEES > ARCHITECTURAL COMMITTEE > QUICK START. Or get there using this shortcut.
chevron_rightHow much are the HOA dues and what do they cover?
HOA dues for 2022 are $220 per residence per month. They cover the expenses of administering and maintaining the Association, including costs for salaries, utilities, maintenance, a reserve fund, legal fees, taxes, interest, insurance, publications, pool, the plant life, etc. The single most expensive categories are for landscaping and irrigation. Association dues do not cover any upkeep within each homeowner's own fences such as roofing, painting, the homeowner's irrigation system, etc.
- chevron_rightCan I pay my HOA dues automatically?
chevron_rightAre pets allowed?
Of course pets are allowed. If you're new here, most likely you'll first meet your neighbors when they're out walking their dogs. Pet rules (under the HOA tab) say that customary household pets are permitted as long as their species, size, and number are reasonable, they are kept under control at all times, and are not kept for commercial purposes. Basically, the point here is that we want to be considerate of each other .. as in nearly all aspects of our lives together.
chevron_rightWhat if my mailbox gets damaged or a streetlight goes out?
Mailboxes are the responsibility of the HOA. Please notify our General Manager using CONTACT US. For streetlight problems, contact PG&E at (800) 743-5000 and give them the light post number on the pole.
chevron_rightI am working with a contractor to remodel my house. Where can he see the original construction drawings?
Floor plans and original construction drawings are posted on our website. Either look at COMMITTEES > ARCHITECTURAL COMMITTEE > FLOOR PLANS or pull down the VISITORS tab to FLOOR PLANS.
chevron_rightI just moved here and see I have a backflow preventer device. I'm told it must be tested regularly. How do I do that?
In 2018 the California Dept. of Health Services required each homeowner to install a backflow preventer and then to test and certify it annually. You can now sign up to have that testing done automatically each year and pay for it with a small additional charge each month on your water bill.
chevron_rightThere's a leak in the bushes outside my fence. Is this a problem for Creekside or the local water utility?
Quickly contact the General Manager at (707) 938-8920. If he can send someone immediately, wait for that opinion. If it is after-hours or the General Manager cannot help you quickly, contact Valley of the Moon Water District at (707) 996-1037.
chevron_rightAre political signs allowed?
Our published Rules and Policies from 2016 are being revised and this particular question is under consideration. Stay tuned :-)
chevron_rightI am new to Creekside and have just signed up for NextDoor. It looks like a good tool for communicating with the HOA.
Actually NextDoor is an independent publication with no connection to Creekside. So issues raised there are not directly addressed by anyone representing our HOA. Instead, please use CONTACT US to convey your questions, complaints or observations to someone who can help you.
chevron_rightI work at home and need fast internet.
Xfinity is one of several internet suppliers here. In September 2021 one homeowner reported a blazing Xfinity download speed of 204.18 Mbps and an upload of 5.92 Mbps. Premium plans may be faster yet.
chevron_rightI can no longer drive. What is the best way to get to town?
You can use Uber or Lyft or Vern’s Taxi. But even more popular - and free - is the Sonoma Shuttle bus. Sonoma County Transit provides that free local bus service via route #32, the Sonoma Shuttle, between Creekside, Temelec and the Sonoma Plaza, both ways, stopping as requested. Check their website for a schedule. Also consider the "My Ride" program at Vintage House, where volunteers can take you grocery shopping or to medical appointments, etc. Vintage House will even shop and deliver your groceries.
5 - Outdoor activities
chevron_rightWhat are the pool hours? May I bring my grandkids to the pool?
The pool and spa are open when the clubhouse is open -- from 6:30 a.m. till midnight. Children under age 18 are welcome at certain times if they are at least three years of age and escorted and closely supervised by a resident. That means they may swim from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. on weekdays -- and from noon until 6:00 p.m. on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. Residents use their electronic fob to open the clubhouse and pool; they can get one from the management office in the clubhouse. The pool is unheated and closed during cold weather, the spa is open all year.
chevron_rightCan anyone play tennis? pickle ball? table tennis?
All residents -- plus children and guests accompanied by a resident -- may use the pool, tennis, pickle ball, table tennis and bocce ball facilities.
6 - Emergency preparedness
chevron_rightWhat’s Creekside doing to mitigate the danger of wildfires?
Our Landscape Committee continues to work hand-in-hand with our landscaping contractor to clean up dead underbrush (i.e. "fuel") along the creek. The Architecture Committee launched a trial program to address fireproofing our fences. The Emergency Preparedness Committee has posted lots of helpful information here. It was the October 2017 fire which concentrated our attention, when teams of Creekside residents patrolled the community from dusk to dawn even though any windblown embers were still miles away.
chevron_rightIn a larger sense, how do we prepare for any type of possible emergency?
Led by our Emergency Preparedness Committee, Creekside is well aware that we could suffer disastrous fires, power outages, smoke alerts, heat waves, water shortages or earthquakes. We're helping each other make plans and gather supplies, and we've trained volunteers who can communicate their neighborhood's status and needs through a local walkie-talkie network.You can find information and resources at the EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS page under the COMMITTEES tab above.