Ins and Outs Of Homeowners Associations

By
Real Estate Agent with nook real estate BRE# 01342880

When purchasing in a community that has an HOA or Home Owners association it is very important that you check it out fully. You cannot assume that the HOA is financially stable, that it is well run or that they have no real rights over your property.  Often time existing homeowners are a wealth of information that you can tap into just by talking to some people walking in the neighborhood or working out in their yards.  You may not get 100% accurate information this way but it is a great way to get started and to have any real red flags come to the surface quickly.

As part of your real estate transaction you r Agent and/or escrow officer should make sure that you receive, in a timely fashion, all relevant disclosures concerning the HOA.  This include but may not be limited to:

 

  1. Statement of Incorporation
  2. CC&R's (covenants and restrictions on properties in the HOA)
  3. Bylaws (rules under which the HOA should be operating)
  4.  Rules and Regulations
  5. Age restrictions if applicable
  6. Budget and reserves - a balance sheet
  7. information on assessments and reserves (any big up coming charges or projects should be disclosed to you)
  8. Assessment enforcement policy
  9. Insurance Summary
  10. Amount and schedule for all assessments regular or special
  11. unpaid obligations of seller
  12. list of defects (judgments, lawsuits, title problems with HOA)
  13. 12 months HOA minutes
  14. Number and location of designated parking spaces (if any)
  15. location of storage spaces (if any)
  16. Private transfer fees or taxes
  17. Rental restrictions
  18. Pet Restrictions
  19. Smoking Restrictions
  20. any document required by local ordinance
  21. Name of Contact for any Property Management association

Getting this information ahead of time is a must to avoid troubles and misunderstandings down the road.  Too many times in the sales process this information is delivered in a difficult to understand manner and so late in the transaction you rarely think about it.  Do yourself a favor and know these answers before you release the contingencies on your purchase contract. It is your right and in your best interest.

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hoa
buying in communities with homeowners associations
gathering information on your homeowners association

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Michael Layton

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