In the United States, nearly 30% of the population lives in a building or neighborhood overseen by an HOA. Each HOA has a board of directors responsible for setting meetings, hiring community vendors, establishing budgets, planning community events, and enforcing the established guidelines and community rules. Keep reading to learn more about how you can benefit from living in a community with an HOA.
HOAs may include individual houses in large neighborhoods or multiple units in a condominium or townhome complex. If you purchase property with an HOA, you automatically become a member of the organization, so you'll need to pay monthly or annual fees. As a resident of an HOA community, you also get to vote for board members when elections occur.
HOAs have several important purposes:
A homeowners association preserves property values by setting and maintaining standards that all community members must follow. Some HOAs are considered to be more strict, while others are more lenient. For example, an HOA may require property owners to get approval from the board before choosing new exterior paint colors or roofing materials. Following these rules makes it easier to create a desirable neighborhood.
Your HOA can also protect you from the effects of living near neighbors who don't take care of their properties with reasonable and expected maintenance. If you've ever lived next door to a house with peeling paint, cracks in the driveway, and other cosmetic problems, you know that it can hurt your own home's value. By setting and enforcing guidelines for home exteriors and shared community spaces, an HOA preserves home values as much as possible.
Every HOA has a budget that it can use to maintain common areas, such as swimming pools, community clubhouses, playgrounds, and parking lots. Since the HOA takes care of these spaces, you don't have to worry about dealing with murky pool water, giant potholes, and other problems. This makes the community more attractive and gives everyone who lives there a sense of pride in their surroundings.
A good HOA uses its funds to keep up with maintenance and repairs, preventing serious accidents for the community members. This may include the structural upkeep of community buildings and the overall infrastructure of the roads and parking lots (if applicable).
In some cases, the actions taken by HOA board members prevent potential criminal activity in the neighborhood. For example, if an HOA uses its funds to install bright lights and security cameras in a shared parking area, thieves may be less likely to break into vehicles in search of loose change or valuables. In contrast, a parking lot with broken lights and no cameras is an attractive target for thieves looking to make a quick buck.
Many HOA boards use some of their funds to plan social events and sponsor activities for residents, promoting a strong sense of community. An example of this may be an HOA sponsoring an Independence Day barbecue or holding a pool party for residents and their guests. These events give everyone an opportunity to gather and reaffirm their commitment to keeping the neighborhood as safe and desirable as possible. Community events also present the perfect opportunity to meet your neighbors.
If your neighborhood isn't in an HOA, you have to pay for all services and amenities on your own. For instance, gardening, lawn maintenance, power washing, and other home services can be expensive, especially if you have a large property. One of many potential HOA benefits is that board members typically set aside some of the organization's funds to provide valuable services and amenities to residents.
One example is swimming pool maintenance, which ensures that everyone has a safe, clean place to swim during the summer months. Your HOA may also pay for common area landscaping and sewer repairs. Many HOAs also pay to maintain tennis courts, golf courses, clubhouses, and shared patios, giving you plenty of places to relax and enjoy the beauty of your neighborhood.
In some communities, the HOA even pays for certain utilities, such as water and sewer. When an HOA covers these expenses, you have one less thing to worry about, making it much easier to enjoy your home.
Eastwood Homes is one of the top builders serving North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Virginia. We have multiple floor plans available, making it easier to find a home that meets your unique needs. Amenities vary by community, so read the Eastwood Homes blog or contact us to learn more about what's available.
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