HOA communities sometimes get a bad rap because of the long list of rules they’ve established for homeowners. However, you shouldn’t let those rules keep you from considering moving into an HOA community altogether. You can still have the peaceful lifestyle you desire while living in an HOA community. To help you in your consideration, here’s a list of things to know before moving to an HOA community.
Every HOA community has its own fee system. For example, you’re likely to pay a monthly fee upfront upon moving into your home. Luckily, there are things that these fees cover—such as landscaping, home maintenance problems, and the use of community amenities.
Each property in the neighborhood comes with its own standard fee, so it’s essential to keep up with these fees and know how much you’re paying each month. Say your property is located on a corner lot—and your lot has more acreage than the neighboring lot—the fees associated with your lot will be higher than the neighboring lot because the size of your property is larger.
Rules To Follow
No two lists of community rules are the same. Right before moving in, it’s a good idea to get to know the HOA board so you can learn the rules and what you can and cannot do. For example, while HOA fees cover large trash disposal, one common HOA rule is to not keep your garbage bin rental by the curb—this mostly has to do with aesthetics and keeping rodents away.
When you first move-in, make sure you learn and follow the rules early on so you don’t face any problems in the future.
Limited Home Improvement
Landscaping and maintenance are two things HOA fees ensure they cover most. However, the biggest downside is that you are limited to how much you can change about your house and yard. If you live in a townhome, for example, some HOA’s won’t allow any walls to be knocked down to create bigger hallways or rooms.
If you’re ever interested in making changes, even the smallest detail, reach out to your board members. They can make you a list of what’s acceptable and what’s not. This rule also applies to using solar panels and planting a garden.
Monthly or Quarterly Meetings
Every HOA board hosts meetings for new and current members. Whenever there’s a meeting, go! There’s never a wrong time not to go, especially if you’re new to the community. Many new HOA members get confused about rules and need a refresher, so attending meetings gets you involved in learning and doing better for the community. Additionally, HOA boards hold elections. If you wish to get more involved in your community, we recommend you consider running once you’ve adjusted to the new lifestyle.
Before you decide to move into to an HOA community, it may be best to keep these things in mind. Otherwise, you may become confused and lost during the transition.