Homeowners’ Association: What Is It Really?

person holding a house miniature with both hands

Moving from one place to another is a milestone that many of us will experience more than once in our lifetime. Those who have already experienced the pains of moving know that the stressors do not really go away once you have settled in your new home. In fact, this is often when the anxiety begins.

Before the actual move, there were logistics to worry about. Among the things that people fret over are which house or land for sale to purchase along Donnybrook Road, which moving company to hire, what items to be packed and rid of, where to enrol the kids, and how to properly bid farewell to friends and your community.

Unfortunately, there is an onslaught of new concerns that arise upon arrival. Most notable of all is acclimating to the new community that you find yourself in. This can be quite burdensome, but not impossible to handle.

A tried-and-tested way of familiarising oneself with the community is by getting involved with the local homeowners’ association (HOA).

Those of you who have never resided in communities that have HOAs may find yourselves confusing the HOA with the property owners’ association. While similar, the latter has wider jurisdiction, encompassing both residential and commercial properties, whereas the HOA only handles the residential community.

Given this, we can now discuss how the HOA operates and how it benefits the community that it oversees.

Manage Community Affairs

Most HOAs set monthly or bi-monthly meetings. This is to ensure that all members are updated with the affairs of the neighbourhood. In these assemblies, it is also possible for neighbours in conflict to bring up their problems so that both members and officers can review and discuss them.

HOAs also enforce the rules within the community. These typically cover aesthetic appeal. Examples are preventing homeowners from installing fences and owning animals that are above a certain size limit. Those who are found breaking these rules have to deal with penalties set by the association.

Handle Finances of the Community

pile of coins around the house miniature

Homeowners who live in communities that have HOAs are expected to pay a set monthly fee that is agreed upon by all residents. This fee goes into the finances of the entire neighbourhood.

Officers of the HOA oversee the proper management of the money. Should the occasion call for it, they can spend it on repairs and upkeep of public facilities. They can also use it to arrange for inspections, as well as to respond to any community emergency.

Increase Property Value

The HOA exists to safeguard the community it oversees. By enforcing the strict covenants in each neighbourhood, the HOA ensures that the value of the community, as well as each individual property, is protected. This is thanks in part to maintaining the overall aesthetic appeal of the neighbourhood.

It should be noted that communities can function well without housing associations. However, those that are guided by these entities are guaranteed more benefits and can live in peace knowing that there are officers who can help with managing the entire neighbourhood.