Tips for Interacting with Your HOA Part 1
The number of homeowners’ associations (HOAs) in the United States has exploded since the 1960s. Back then, there were roughly 500 HOAs nationwide, but today that number has increased to 309,600. The increasing popularity of HOAs in the U.S. is logical when you consider the benefits of living in a neighborhood governed by a selected committee of your peers. HOAs enforce a strict code of rules for residents to follow. These rules help improve the neighborhood and keep homes and facilities in exemplary condition.
However, if you are unable to keep up with your HOA assessments and fail to follow the rules established in your neighborhood covenants, conditions, and restrictions (CC&Rs), your relationship with your HOA could quickly turn sour. In this two-part article, the Tampa HOA property management experts at Wise Property Management will explore ways to promote a positive relationship between you and your HOA.
Follow the CC&Rs
Your neighborhood CC&Rs help establish the fundamental guidelines for living in your community. It helps answer most of the important questions posed by residents and fosters a cohesive understanding of HOA expectations. CC&Rs help preserve your property’s value by ensuring your neighbors are unable to paint their homes unappealing colors or park a boat in their front yard year round. If you follow the CC&Rs, but your neighbors don’t, you will be thankful for an observant HOA that addresses the problem quickly. On the other hand, if you are unable to follow the CC&Rs, your relationship with the HOA will be strained.
Understand Rules and Bylaws
Beyond the CC&Rs, you must become familiar with any homeowners’ association rules and bylaws to avoid a conflict with your HOA. You don’t want to be fined for an arbitrary rule you were unaware of, like parking a pickup truck in your driveway. Your property’s deed may also contain rules and regulations for you to follow. It’s important to remain diligent when living in a community with an HOA. One violation can lead to increased surveillance, so one HOA-compliance mishap can result in more issues down the line.
Communicate with Your Community
When living in a neighborhood with an HOA, you and your neighbors are responsible for the same dues, assessments, and regulations. They face the same challenges you do, and these challenges can help you form a strong bond. If your HOA takes an aggressive stance regarding insignificant rules or starts assessing fines on a large-scale, you will need to band together with other residents to fight back against your HOA. While this scenario is rare, it doesn’t hurt to develop close relationships with your neighbors to counteract any possible conflicts that arise with your HOA.
It takes a cooperative effort between the residents and the HOA to create the ideal living situation for everyone in a community. In part two, we will provide more tips for interacting with your HOA.