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What is an HOA?

You’ve researched, crunched the numbers, and found the home of your dreams — but it belongs to a homeowners association (HOA). What does that mean for you?

For some, the idea of belonging to an HOA is confusing and can cause you to think twice about whether or not you should buy a house. However, once you understand what membership in an HOA means, you can confidently make the choice that’s best for you.

We’re here to give you the low-down on what an HOA is and what it means to belong to one.

HOA basics

A homeowners association is an organization that makes and enforces rules in a neighborhood or community, and most are governed by an elected Board of Directors. Each resident who buys a home in the homeowners association pays a fee to belong to the association, and in return the association provides certain services or benefits to the community.

Each homeowners association is a little bit different so there’s not one set of rules that all of them follow. What might be allowed in one HOA might not be in another one. Similarly, each HOA has its own set of benefits that it provides to homeowners.

Benefits of an HOA

Some communities offer a pool, tennis courts, or parks that residents can use. Most HOAs have standards for the exterior and landscaping of a home. Approval is required from the HOA before you change the exterior of your home. Some even provide landscaping services to all residents.

This helps the neighborhood maintain a well-kept and uniform look, and is good news for your property value. When you belong to an HOA, you can rest assured that your neighbor isn’t going to paint the exterior of their home lime green and add a tower on their roof.

If you enjoy living in an orderly neighborhood and are willing to pay the fees necessary, belonging to an HOA may be a good choice for you.

Drawbacks of an HOA

If you’re the kind of person who would like to paint your home lime green and add a tower to the roof, however, a homeowners association might not be right for you. Many homeowners are excited to make their house their own and value the freedom to make decisions for their homes without having to discuss them with anyone.

Some prospective buyers might also find the homeowners association fees to be too costly. If you highly value independence when it comes to the exterior of your home, and would rather not pay fees, belonging to an HOA might not be the best choice for you.

Finding your dream home

It’s a good idea to research state and federal laws about HOAs to make sure that belonging to one is right for you. If you are interested in additional information regarding New Mexico’s laws on HOAs, make sure to check out this website.
At the end of the day, it’s really up to you whether or not belonging to an HOA is the best choice. If you have any questions about becoming a member of an HOA or want more information about a specific house in an HOA, contact us today. Our expert associate brokers here at Steinborn can help you understand how to purchase a house in an HOA and help you find the house that’s perfect for you.

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