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A Look at the Pros and Cons of Homeowners' Associations

A Look at the Pros and Cons of Homeowners' Associations

Homeowners' associations, commonly referred to as HOA's, are loved by some and strongly criticized by others. It is an important issue worth exploring as nearly one-third of home buyers purchase properties in common-interest developments (HOAs). Let's dig into the merits and flaws of this hotly-debated topic.

HOA Advantages:

A Beautiful Place to Live

One of the primary benefits of living in a homeowners' association is the aesthetic beauty. All living spaces within an HOA are required to adhere to beautification standards established by the association. The penalty for failing to meet these standards can be a hefty fine. As a result, the vast majority of these living spaces are easy on the eyes. You won't spot any tall lawns, peeling paint or other unsightly scenes. Certain HOA's even maintain a design review board that is responsible for approving alterations to home exteriors.

Fewer Maintenance Headaches

If you are tired of doing yard work, shoveling snow and disposing of your trash on your own, you should seek out a property in an HOA that will take care of all these tasks. Plenty of HOA's will maintain your property's exterior as well as the common areas. This arrangement is perfect for individuals with limited mobility and those who do not have the time, patience or energy to do outdoor chores.

Recreational Niceties

Many HOA's have diverse amenities like tennis courts, swimming pools, basketball courts and walking trails. Can you imagine having some or all of these recreational opportunities right outside of your door? Traditional homeowners will be so jealous that they might move in next door!

If you relish your individualism, living in an HOA is not a good ideas as the homes may tend to look like one another.

HOA Cons:

Certain Vehicles Might be Banned

Though few know it, some HOA's have strict rules pertaining to the number of vehicles that can be parked on a homeowner's property. There are even rules regarding the types of vehicles that can be parked on-site. As an example, an HOA might disallow the parking of an RV or other large vehicles.

It Costs Money

Though an HOA will provide extensive amenities and assistance, membership often costs a pretty penny. You will be required to pay monthly dues in addition to your mortgage. If you can't pay on time, the HOA can foreclose on your home.

Conformity

If you relish your individualism, living in an HOA is not a good idea as the homes may tend to look like one another. You may not be able to paint your house in the color that strikes your fancy. Some HOA's even have rules pertaining to the types of flowers you are allowed to plant and the types of decorations you can hang!

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