HOA is an acronym that stands for Homeowners’ Association. Basically when you purchase a property in a planned development, including single-family detached homes and condominiums, you join that community’s HOA.
As a part of the HOA, you pay HOA fees monthly or annually. These fees are not included in your mortgage payment since they assist with the upkeep of common areas. These fees help pay for the maintenance of common areas, amenities centers, common-area landscaping and the overall upkeep of the community.
The HOA is typically established by the real estate developer and then often transferred to a management company and/or an association of homeowners once the community has been completed to a certain point.
How much does an HOA cost?
The cost of an HOA varies from community to community, with averages ranging depending on the geographic location of your home.
The more amenities and common space a community has, the more space there is for the HOA to maintain. That means that a higher HOA fee may be needed.
What are the benefits of an HOA?
When purchasing a new home, homebuyers will often consider the community amenities offered, such as parks, playgrounds, pools and more. These amenities could make the community a desirable place to live and spend time with families and friends! Barbecues in the park and pool parties with the neighborhood kids are some of possible festivities you could enjoy as a member of the community. A large portion of your HOA fees will usually go towards ensuring the community areas you enjoy remain clean and beautiful places to spend your time. This maintenance helps to sustain the consistent look of your community.
If I don’t use the amenities, do I still have to pay?
Your HOA fees pay for more than just the amenities offered in common areas! The HOA fees are mandatory and support the development and enforcement of certain rules and guidelines for you and your neighbors to follow so that the community is maintained for years to come. These rules are called covenants, conditions and restrictions (CC&Rs) and they are created to help all homeowners maintain the look, feel and function of the community.
How can I get involved in my HOA?
Each HOA has a Board of Directors and likely an Association Management Company. To get involved in your HOA, you can run for a position on the Board or attend Board Meetings. As a homeowner, you have a voice and a vote in your HOA!
What should I know before purchasing a house in a community with an HOA?
- Research the HOA cost and what it includes. The HOA fees are in addition to your mortgage payment. It is important to include these fees in your budget along with your mortgage and any other financial commitments to ensure you can afford the total cost of homeownership. Learn what the fees cover within your community and compare the dues to what other communities in the area are charging
- Read the HOA Rules. Before purchasing, you should understand your community’s rules and what happens if you commit a violation. Learn about how you can get involved in the HOA to be a voice in any changes or additions that may arise.
- Consider your temperament. Some people may love having an HOA Board to enforce and regulate rules and keep the community a place they enjoy living in! Others may be frustrated by the feeling of authority watching over them. Decide if this type of property suits the needs of your personality.
Do you have a question about the HOA at a new KB Home community in your area? Do you love how your HOA takes care of your community? Let us know!