What to Expect with a Homeowners Association

August 21, 2018 | By Lorraine & Pete

Anytime you purchase a home, a condo, or a townhouse that's within a planned community, you're likely going to join a homeowners’ association (or HOA). HOAs assume the responsibility of taking care of the common areas of buildings and properties that the homeowners all share in exchange for monthly fees. If you're looking for homes for sale by owner in Lake Wallenpaupack, PA, you may have to join an HOA. Here are a few things of which you should be aware.

There Will Be Rules

Every HOA is different. Some homeowners’ associations are lenient, and are very flexible with members, while others can be extremely strict. You can likely find out your HOA's rules by looking online. If you have any difficulty, ask your real estate agent. It's important you learn in advance what your HOA expects from you, so you aren't surprised (and disappointed) later on.

Is Your Home in Compliance?

While you're looking for your HOA's requirements, find out if the homefor sale in Lake Wallenpaupack, PA, that you're considering buying is in compliance with the HOA rules. If it isn't, see how much time and money it will take to make the home compliant. You may discover the cost is so prohibitive. If so, it's worth looking elsewhere.

Is the HOA Environmentally Friendly

Everyone has different priorities. If your impact on the environment is important to you, find out if the HOA requires you to act in ways that don't correspond with your beliefs. For instance, some homeowners’ associations require you to use pesticides on your gardens, or excessively water your lawn. It's also not uncommon to find that they ban compost piles and solar panels. You don't want to move into a new home only to discover you're forced to be environmentally irresponsible.

Does the HOA Match Your Personality?

If you don't like being told what to do, avoid an HOA that's too regulatory. If, on the other hand, you're easily bothered by unsightly lawn ornaments or paint jobs, perhaps you'd rather have an HOA that keeps your neighbors in line. It all depends on your priorities.

Don't Forget the Fees

Not only is it important to know your fees in advance, you'll want to know how often they're likely to increase.

HOAs provide a valuable service, but they can be onerous as well. Know the facts before purchasing any new home in Lake Wallenpaupack, PA.

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