There's nothing like a controlling HOA (Homeowner's Association) to make some homeowners see red. We have all heard the horror stories over the years, although many associations have relaxed and have come to realize that they are there to serve the homeowners rather than restrict them.
In Arizona, we recently passed legislation that limits the restrictions that homeowner's associations can place on the signs homeowners can display when they are selling their home. That new legislation, SB 1062, just went into effect on September 19, 2007. If you would like to read the exact language of the bill, see SB 1062. This also requires that HOAs NOT prohibit the installation of a flagpole and the flying of our American flag (among others) and the display of political signs immediately preceding an election. To read the revised statutes themselves, see ARS 33-1261 and ARS 33-1808.
HOAs are not allowed to prohibit the display of a for sale sign and a sign rider as long as it is on the owner's property. However, they are allowed to limit the size of the sign and rider to industry standard sizes (18" x 24" for the sign, 6" x 24" for the rider).
There is a gray area (no pun intended) in the regulation of the color or design of signs. There is no provision for the HOA to regulate color; however there is no prohibition against that type of regulation either. My prediction is that while the majority of HOA's will be reasonable and allow the currently used for sale signs of the brokerages representing their sellers, there will be a few who will try to regulate content and/or color scheme. I believe that in some areas, we will see litigation over this issue unless the HOAs and the owners can work together to find a resolution.
There may also be HOAs who still prohibit the placement of these signs even after the law is in effect. If you know of such a violation, Tucson Association of Realtors is asking that you contact them by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Additionally, if you would like to file a complaint with the HOA dispute resolution department as opposed to filing a lawsuit, go to http://www.dbfs.state.az.us/OA/Downloads/HOA%20Package04012007.pdf.