Should You Join the Neighbourhood’s Homeowners’ Association?

Part of the allure of being able to refer to yourself as a homeowner is the independence which comes with being able to do with your immediate living space as you please, without really having to consult with anyone. Sure, there are municipal by-laws in those places vaunted as a shining example of civilised and harmonious existence, which has many advantages such as aiding in the upholding of a standard of living everybody in the area can be more than satisfied with.

It also accounts for somewhat of a barrier against property valuations in that area plummeting below a certain threshold, so some kind of independence is given up, effectively. One of the ways which can be identified to make for an avenue to give up some of that independence is that of joining the neighbourhood’s HOA (Home Owners Association).

You likely know all too well about what it would mean to be part of the HOA and, with all of that in mind, the question is would it make sense for you to join your neighbourhood’s Homeowners’ Association?

Let’s first look at the disadvantage, in so doing suggesting that the advantages we’ll end-off with outweigh the disadvantages. The homeowners association can be a pain, but will they make you ask permission for making changes to your home such as adding teak garden furniture?

The disadvantages of being part of a Homeowners’ Association

As already touched-on, a concession of being part of a Homeowners’ Association is that which effectively has you giving up a degree of control on what you can and cannot do with what you’d otherwise proudly refer to like your property. It’s not as bad as it sounds though, because the control which you’re giving up is mostly on a regulatory compliance level, encompassing the maintenance of the overall value and quality of life of your neighbourhood.

So sure, you might be called out for not mowing the front lawn regularly enough, or you might embark on a mini-rebellion as you realize the invasive weed you left to grow too tall now technically needs you to get town council permission to cut down, but as is the case with many laws, they’re simply there to instil some kind of order.

One more disadvantage that needs to be kept in mind is getting updated with the frequent changes in rules and regulations for HOAs. For example, in California, an amendment was made to the Davis Sterling act (if interested, you can learn more about the Davis Stirling Act here), which has barred HOA management companies to act as inspectors in the elections. With such frequent amendments, it might be important to know revised rules and regulations. Homeowners need you to adhere to the laws of society even if they don’t follow the rules themselves.

You’ll likely also have to pay a yearly fee to be part of the Homeowners’ Association too, money which you could have otherwise freely made your own plans to improve or maintain your property with.

Advantages of being part of a Homeowners’ Association

It’s not like you need permission to buy that teak garden furniture you’ve been eyeing or anything like that if you join an HOA, so the restrictions, regulations and rules will never make you feel like you have no control over your living space.

The advantages of being part of an HOA do indeed outweigh the disadvantages, especially if you consider that it is indeed ultimately a choice you have to make to join or not. Joining means you would have been made wise to the privileges that come with the membership, which then subsequently come with responsibilities, and a fee.

It’s a matter of a community-based approach to maintaining a good quality of domestic life.

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