When shopping for land to buy, you will most likely run across property that is governed by a Homeowners Association (HOA). HOAs have been in existence for many years but have really gained in popularity in recent years. There are over 62 million residents in more than 26 million homes that are subject to homeowner association rules.
Why have HOAs Gained in Popularity?
Many homeowners associations were created to make sure the subdivision’s common areas and buildings, such as clubhouses and pools, were maintained properly. HOAs were also established to develop standards of acceptable behavior within the community and to ensure that homes were properly maintained.
What are some Perceived Downsides to HOAs?
Homeowners associations have developed a bad reputation in some cases for being unfair and heavy-handed in maintaining community standards. Here are some pros and cons for you to consider before purchasing land overseen by an HOA:
The Benefits of an HOA
HOAs Provide Amenities
These amenities include maintenance of common areas, community buildings and pools, fitness centers, tennis courts, playgrounds, and walking paths.
HOAs Provide Uniformity
An HOA will make sure guidelines are established and enforced to maintain uniformity in anything from the color of a home to the height of grass, parking rules on the streets, to when trash cans may be put out each week for garbage pickup.
HOAs Reduce Your Responsibilities
HOAs are paid to oversee such services as snow removal, repairing of roads, cleaning up dead trees, maintaining common areas, and in some cases trash removal and lawn care.
HOA Fees Often Cover Water and Sewer Services
In some communities, HOAs will apply a portion of your fees to municipal services, and by sharing these services for water and sewer with your neighbors, may greatly reduce your costs.
The Disadvantages of HOAs
HOAs Have Fees
Homeowners are subject to monthly or yearly fees that may increase on a regular basis or be expensive for your budget.
HOAs may be Subject to Strict Rules and Restrictions
Homeowners must abide by HOA regulations or face consequences, such as fines or liens on a home. Your community may impose restrictions that include the kind of animals you may own, the number and type of vehicles that may be parked in your driveway, or the landscaping you may have on your property. You may have restrictions on the material you may use and time allowed to build your home. HOAs expect homeowners to gain prior approval for any new home projects.
There are many pros and cons to buying a property with an HOA. Before you make that purchase you should carefully examine the HOA by-laws to make sure you can live with the fees, rules, and restrictions.
Gastineau Log Homes has over 40 years of experience helping people realize their dream of building and maintaining a log home. Contact us today and let’s explore your dreams together.