Home Owners Associations, or HOAs, help to maintain property values and neighborhood aesthetics by creating guidelines for communities. If you buy a home or a condominium governed by an HOA, your neighbors might have a set list of guidelines that you need to abide by. These guidelines might keep your neighbor from ignoring their landscaping or parking their broken cars on their front lawn. Here are a few other things that your local HOA might regulate:
1: Internet Service Providers
Have you ever wondered why your work insurance plan is so much cheaper than independent versions you could buy on your own? When groups of people bond together to buy a similar service, it drives the price down. The same concept holds true with HOAs and internet service providers.
Some HOAs ask everyone in the neighborhood to use the same internet service provider, so that everyone gets a lower price on service. Some associations create contracts with internet providers, so that you get a low, locked-in rate a few years at a time. If you move into a neighborhood governed by an HOA, check with your representatives to see if you are under contract.
To keep your neighbors from building an unsightly deck or awning that impedes your view of the mountains, your HOA might regulate home additions like awnings. Before you install any structure to the side of your home, check your local HOA guidelines. Many HOAs give new residents a packet that outlines all of the services and rules laid out by the HOA so that you aren't caught off guard.
3: Parked Vehicles
Your HOA might also have rules regarding how vehicles can be parked on your property. Instead of parking cars along the street or recreational vehicles in the back of your truck, you might be asked to keep your rides parked inside of the confines of your garage. This guideline is created to keep the street free and clear, so that traffic isn't disrupted when someone gets back from a trip.
4: Home Aesthetics
Your HOA might also have rules governing the appearance of the outside of your home. For example, you might be asked to refrain from repainting your siding bright colors, or installing a cheap-looking fence. Some HOAs even regulate seasonal decorations, such as blow-up snow globes or messy-looking holiday lights. If you belong to an HOA, go through your information packet before you make any change to the exterior of your home, even if the change is temporary.
Understanding common HOA regulations might help you to avoid breaking the rules and avoid frustrating your neighbors. For more information, contact Cornerstone Properties Inc. or a similar company.