Beyond the mortgage, maintenance and property taxes of a new home, you may not be aware that many newer communities require you to be part of the Homeowner Association (HOA). If you're wondering about what the HOA entails and how this can impact the home and community you live in, here are some facts that may be important to know before you buy.
What Is A HOA?
If you happen to have a Homeowner Association present in your new community, it's important to know that this body works to enforce the rules of the neighborhood. Made up of a group of volunteers that live within a given area, different community members will be responsible for different aspects of the community. While there are annual fees for an HOA and they vary from place to place, communities with this type of association often come with a higher price tag on the market.
The Types Of Rules Enforced
The rules that are enforced by a HOA differ depending on the community, but they can range from issues as diverse as the height of fences to the number of pets per residence to the amount owed for fines. While you may have found your ideal home in a great community, it can be worth looking into the rules of your local HOA so that you can determine if they'll work for you. If there are any red flags, you may want to consider your options or decide if the sacrifice is worth it.
Dealing With The Rules
It's important to stick to the rules of the community you live in because you can be taken to small claims court if you don't pay your fees or respond appropriately to complaints. If you're in a position where you disagree with the rules and would like to pursue another option, you will want to make a written request to the board and wait it out. You may not get a response very quickly due to the voluntary nature of most HOA, but it's important to be compliant with the regulations until your request is approved.
It's great news if you've found your dream home in a nice new community, but it's important to be aware of the HOA rules that you'll have to comply with. If you're currently on the market for a new home, contact your local real estate professional for more information.