Many home buyers hear the term HOA (Homeowners Association) and cringe. That's because the media has often portrayed HOAs as the "bad guy" because of their fees and efforts to "police" the neighborhood. But when you buy a home in an Orlando neighborhood that is covered by an HOA, your property could actually benefit in several ways. Here are a few reasons why.
What is an HOA?
A homeowners association is a private group formed by a community’s real estate developer to manage and keep the peace in the neighborhood. The members of the HOA live in the community, so they have a vested interest in maintaining a high quality of life for the homeowners and its tenants.
An HOA collects monthly or annual fees from the homeowners to cover services and amenities in the community, such as maintenance of a community pool or playground, as well as landscaping and pest control.
The HOA also requires that homeowners observe rules such as the color of your home, lawn care, and parking. These rules are intended to help maintain the neighborhood’s appearance, which ultimately helps to maintain your property’s value.
How an HOA Benefits Homeowners
The HOA rules that govern a home’s exterior appearance ensure that your neighborhood remains attractive to its current residents and future home buyers. Some HOAs also provide a gate around the community and/or 24-hour security to keep the neighborhood and its residents safe.
The HOA is also responsible for enforcing disputes that may occur between neighbors, such as excessive dog barking or loud parties.
HOA fees in some communities in Orlando, such as the Reunion Resort, pay for a host of amenities such as golf courses, waterpark, spa and fitness center and discounts on food and beverages at the resort’s restaurants.
Disadvantages of an HOA
Some HOA fees can be as much as $500 a month, but the amount you’ll pay depends on the number of amenities and services the association provides. It’s important to take the HOA fees into consideration, especially if you plan to do a short-term rental of your Orlando home.
Some HOA rules regarding home maintenance are so strict, you may have to spend a lot of time on your home’s appearance. If you don’t plan to live in your home year-round, you may want to invest in a property manager to protect your investment. A property manager can also ensure your home is well maintained for your rental guests.
HOAs typically have strict rules regarding rentals, so make sure you know what is allowed before you buy. Some associations require tenants to be screened and win board approval for you can rent to them. This can make it difficult for investors to turn a profit on their property.
If you have any questions about HOAs in the Orlando area, Team Donovan can help. We’re familiar with the HOA fees, services and amenities offered in the various communities. We can help you find the perfect vacation home or investment property. Contact us today at 407-705-2616.