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Home Owner Associations Evil Or NOT
During my time in Real Estate I have met some folks with serious opinions about HOA's. Home Owner Associations!
I will go ahead and let you know - I live in a subdivision with an active HOA in place. I have lived in subdivisions WITHOUT an active HOA in place.
***** From my experience as a home owner and agent - I have seen how an HOA can help you, and how no HOA can hurt you. ****
Some folks don't want anyone telling them what they can and can't do on their property. I get it. I respect that. That reason is why millions of people WANT to own their own home. They don't want to be at the mercy of what their landlord says they can and can't do.. so they buy their own home. When that happens, they don't want to have regulations by a community.
For example, I have 4 lovely lots for sale in a subdivision. The subdivision was created in the 70's with the idea families would build weekend retreats there so on the weekend they could come out and fish, boat, etc. The HOA, deed restriction, or restrictive covenants are short, only 2 pages of regulations. There is little oversight on what you can and can't do on your land. Sounds great - right! Well, it is, until, there is that one neighbor who "forgot" to clean up their yard. It is littered with all kinds of imaginable things. Trash, tires, old cars... you get the idea.
Well, I have had many interested in my lots, but want to know "when are they going to make them clean up the subdivision"
Catch 22 - how can you expect no one to tell you what to do on your land - but still want the community to have other residents "clean up" ??
Then, you have communities which have stricter HOA enforcement. If your bushes need to be trimmed, mailbox is looking dirty, cars parked on the grass, grass needs to be cut, house in need of power washing, boats, trailers parked in the front... the resident gets a violation letter asking them to correct the problem. If the community has hired a property management company, then the homeowner deals with them to correct their issue. Sometimes, the problem in the letter seems ridiculous to the homeowner. My mailbox isn't that dirty! I have 4 drivers in the house, where else can we park safely? The boat is only in the driveway for 4 months during the summer. I don't have the money to have my house power washed.
You can imagine the response you would have to a violation letter.
The one resident has to look at the "other side of the coin". The rest of the community has taken their time and money to ensure their house is clean. They worked hard to maintain their yard. They make arrangements so the grass is not turned into a parking lot.
Because the rest of the community abides by the rules, they want you to as well. They want the overall appearance of the subdivision to be maintained so one morning they don't wake up and realize everyone's yard looks terrible.
HOA can be a great thing to keep the appearance of the subdivision pleasing to the eye. It can be great because Mr. Smith won't have to confront Mr. Jones about him violating a rule. The property management company can handle the problem and Mr. Smith and Mr. Jones can just continue to be neighbors.
For some, HOA are not great because they don't have the resource of time or money to keep up with the rules.
In the long run, in a subdivision, an HOA can do a lot to protect your property value.
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