Civil Code § 4735
Associations may no longer prohibit the use of artificial turf or any other synthetic surface that resembles grass. However, the law specifically does not prohibit an Association from establishing reasonable landscaping rules, so long as the restrictions do not have the effect of prohibiting artificial turf. Therefore, Associations and their Boards may still be able to limit the type of artificial turf a homeowner can use, including for example, the color and replacement requirements. Associations may also be able to enact reasonable limitations regarding the amount of turf and the location, so long as those restrictions did not effectively make it impossible for a homeowner to install artificial turf completely.
The requirements of AB349 expands upon similar protections in California Civil Code § 4735 which already exist which allow for homeowners to install “low water-using plants”. This bill amends that requirement to include “artificial turf or any other synthetic surface that resembles grass”. Also, AB349 adds a new subpart (d) to Civil Code § 4735 which mandates that an owner who installs such water-efficient landscaping shall not be required to remove the water-efficient landscaping once the drought comes to an end.