While many people may believe Homeowner Associations (HOA) are a nuisance, others may find them to be more appealing. Here in the Treasure Valley, HOA’s have become very popular in the newer developments and while they may have their drawbacks, they do have their advantages as well. When searching for a new home, it is important to know if there are HOAs.
If the home you love is in an HOA, you do not have a choice of joining the association as it will be mandatory. The purchase of your home becomes a contract with the HOA so it is crucial that you have read the CC&R’s (covenants, conditions and restrictions), the HOA rules, and read the minutes to the meetings. These rules could include how many cars you can park in the driveway, what structures you can or can not have on your property, the type of fence allowed around the home, what colors you can paint your house, whether you can rent the property to someone else, along with other rules pertaining to your home and community and if not followed a homeowner could face monetary citations and a request for the correction to comply with the conditions.
HOA’s usually include association dues which should be considered when buying a home on a mortgage, whether they are monthly or annually. Dues will differ in cost depending on factors such as amenities offered by the community, any utilities like irrigation included, and whether the HOA is sufficiently planning for the future of reserve requirements. You'll find in the Boise and surrounding areas, such as Meridian, Eagle, Caldwell, Star, Nampa, Kuna, and Middleton the typical range is from about $50 to a couple hundred per month. The primary use of these dues are usually for the maintenance of common areas (walking paths, pools, gyms or recreation centers), some utility services and insurance premiums. The HOA Board could also decide to impose a special assessment at any time with the required votes to deal with needed improvements for common areas or for emergency repairs.
Though the rules and regulations of HOA’s sound daunting, there are many advantages to having them. Included in various HOA’s are luxurious amenities such as pools, golf courses, playgrounds, lakes, walking paths, and/or recreation centers. These are appealing to many people due to the lack of maintenance required by the homeowners. Another advantage to HOA’s is that your property value, based on neighborhood conditions, should remain stable. Also, if all homeowners abide by the CC&R’s, you could avoid problems that some neighborhoods are inundated with, such as broken down cars being parked in the driveway for years, houses being painted bright and with unsightly colors or poor maintenance of yards and roads which all detract from the value perceived of the home.
This article provides a brief and general introduction to the topic of HOA’s, but there is much more to cover. If you would like more information on either HOA’s or homes in the Treasure Valley, please contact me directly at 208.908.1777 for a meeting to discuss your real estate needs in the Boise Regional Area of Idaho.
Allen Cofield, Associate Broker, GRI
eXp Realty, LLC
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