Pros and Cons of HOA (Homeowners Association)
Posted March 26, 2014


A Homeowners Association (HOA) is the governing body that makes and enforces many of the rules that pertain to common interest developments such as tract housing, subdivisions and condominiums. HOA fees are monthly fees paid by the owners of the homes, and go toward the maintenance of certain common community amenities such as pools, playgrounds, elevators, mowing and landscaping. The type of maintenance depends on the type of dwellings as well as rules set by the managing group or company. HOA fees almost always are levied on condominium owners, and may also apply to single family neighborhoods.

Whenever you make your initial inquiry on a home you can ask whether or not you will have a HOA, as well as the monthly or yearly fee amounts. Amounts of these fees vary from place to place and can influence a buyer's ability to purchase the home. You can ask that the HOA covenant stating the association's rules and regulations as well as the services provided for fees paid be provided to you by the seller before closing. This should be read closely to make sure there is nothing unacceptable to you the buyer when it comes to what you can or can't do to your home. HOA documents are usually provided by the seller and some can be found on the website of the managing companies.

Actually the rules and regulations or CC&Rs (covenants, conditions and restrictions) make CIDS (common interest developments) popular with most buyers. Because CC&Rs generally cover the outside appearance of a home, the resulting required uniformity of homes keeps surprises to a minimum. At times homeowners differ with those rules when considering changes to the outside of their home. Depending on how lenient or strict the HOA rules are, they may or may not be able to express their "individuality". These rules and regulations may save your neighborhood from someone painting their house pink, placing a flock of flamingos in their yard or someone adding a third floor to their house.

Whether or not you have any current or future issues with your HOA, it may be advantageous to attend the meetings, join the board and get to know your neighbors.

Posted By: Michelle Keaton-Barrow
March 26, 2014 11:32 PM




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