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4 things to consider before buying in an HOA

Before you buy any home, it is crucial that you think carefully not just about how much money you plan to spend, but also what your purchase means for your future.

For instance, if you are considering buying a home in a homeowners' association, you will want to be sure you understand what you are signing up for. You are not just buying a home; you are also buying a community that could come with strict rules. Below, we offer four important things you will want to consider before buying a home in an HOA.

  1. Do you love the outward appearance of the home? Chances are, your HOA bylaws will restrict the types of changes you can make to your home, including the outside appearance. If you don't love certain elements of the home, figure out if you have the option of making changes or not.
  2. What types of amenities are there? One major benefit of associations is typically the availability of various amenities, from swimming pools and meeting rooms to landscaping and fitness facilities. Review the amenities and determine whether there are any restrictions on use or access.
  3. How do the amenities compare to the monthly dues? As a member, you will pay monthly dues to cover shared expenses, which includes amenity-related payments. Think about how much you'd be paying and compare that to how much you might use the shared facilities. If you'd never use them, then paying for them every month pay not seem appealing.
  4. What are your options if you have a problem with the HOA? Disputes can arise between homeowners and HOAs. Before buying in an association, make sure you understand what options you have if you have a complaint and what types of penalties a person could face for violations. 

Even if you fall in love with a home, the limitations of an HOA could outweigh the benefits. However, if you understand what you are signing up for, then you can feel good about your purchase and your future in a new home.

Anyone with questions about buying in an HOA before or after a purchase can discuss their concerns with an attorney. HOAs must operate within the confines of Florida state laws, so talking to an attorney about your rights as a homeowner can be a wise decision.

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