By Dan Glennzig
For many home buyers, the idea of living in a neighborhood with a homeowners’ association can be enough to want to run away screaming from a listing. Many people have heard horror stories from friends and family members who have lived in neighborhoods with HOAs and who have had a hard time with them for one reason or another. However, even though there are certainly some disadvantages to HOAs — and even though some HOAs are definitely better than others — a homeowners’ association isn’t necessarily a bad thing. In fact, there are actually quite a few reasons to consider buying a home in a neighborhood with an HOA. These are a few reasons why.
1. Enjoy Increased Amenities
Living in a neighborhood that has a community swimming pool (or even several swimming pools), a clubhouse, a fitness center, walking trails and other amenities can be a wonderful thing. However, these amenities have to be planned for and maintained somehow, and that is through a homeowners’ association.
2. Maintain Your Property Values
Your home is probably one of the biggest — if not the biggest — investment that you will ever make in your life, and maintaining its value is probably very important to you. Overall, homes that are in neighborhoods with homeowners’ associations are better able to maintain their property values, so if you decide to sell later, you can help ensure that you get as much as possible for your home.
3. Enjoy a Better-Maintained Neighborhood
If you have ever lived in a neighborhood with bumpy roads and overgrown grass, you probably understand the benefits of an HOA. If you live in a neighborhood with a homeowners’ association, you don’t have to worry about arguing with your neighbors over who is responsible for taking care of common areas or paying for road work. Instead, all of these things will be handled by your homeowners’ association and covered by your HOA fees.
4. Enjoy a Better Sense of Community
Overall, neighborhoods with homeowners’ associations can have a much better sense of community. Through your HOA, you can get to know other homeowners in your neighborhood. Plus, many HOAs work hard to plan things like block parties and other community gatherings, which can be a lot of fun and can help you get to know the people who live around you. It’s a great way to feel even more “at home” in your own neighborhood, whereas in many neighborhoods without an HOA, you may never meet or speak to the people who live around you, much less hang out with one another and plan neighborhood gatherings.
5. Avoid Nuisances
Barking dogs, neighbors who like to play their music loud at all hours of the night and day, junk cars and other similar things can be major nuisances. Many homeowners’ associations have rules and guidelines in place regarding these things, so you won’t have to worry as much about dealing with nuisances or having to make the awkward decision to confront a neighbor or call the police.
As you can see, even though there are certainly some disadvantages to living in a neighborhood with a homeowners’ association, there are a lot of things to love about it too. If you are in the market to buy a home and have been avoiding homes that are in neighborhoods with HOAs, you may want to reconsider your decision. Once you view some of these neighbors and learn a little more about the HOAs that are in place in them, you might just change your mind and decide that this type of neighborhood is the right choice for you and your family after all.
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