HOA's here have in many cases way oversteeped what is reasonable. Some have tried to ban satellite dishes which by federal law is illegal. One of my friends at work was told he could only use natural building products after he asked if he could use TREX decking on his front porch (which was about 300' from the street mind you and there is no way anyone would know what the deck was made from at that distance). Other neighborhoods have enacted rules that state you have to have your garbage can off the street within 2 hours after the garbage is picked up or you will get a Nazi-gram from them, too bad if you have a job, you better come home and take care of your garbage can before one of the HOA board members who are largely retired with nothing better to do than stick their noses in others business comes around and sees it. In a country where we value freedom so highly many down here go out of their way to obliterate it at every turn. I always say that since the ending of the cold war, the US has become one of the most communistic countries in the world. You can't hardly do anything down here anymore without the government, your neighbors or a special intrest group getting in your face. I fully understand the need to set rules that there not be broken appliances in the front yard and derelict vehicles rotting in the driveway but for god's sake why should an HOA be able to tell you what kind of plants you can plant or that you HAVE to have a lawn.
Sorry, you really struck a nerve there with this one...
In my neighborhood there had been an HOA with CCRs but they failed to meet or enforce the rules so after a given amount of time they are rendered nullified. I made sure before I built there. We have a nice neighborhood and people keep their places looking nice and clean so there really isn't a need for it.
Milzat is right. People should do their research before they buy and not complain after the fact. Kinda like buying next to an airport and then complaining about the noise.