5 Common HOA Rules You Don’t Know About

An  HOA,  or a Homeowners Association,  certainly has a place in the market. But what it is,  and what it’s purpose is, are often unknown to consumers. Simply put, its a group of homeowners in a subdivision or condo association that regulates rules and procedures that must be followed by all.

There are usually not exceptions,  and all rules must be followed accordingly.  The main goal of the association is to maintain and increase property values for all owners in the community. Our experts have put their heads together,  and have come up with a few rules that are common among HOA’s across the country. If you like the freedom of being able to dictate your own policy, then this type of organization may not be for you.

Trash and Debris Must Be Cleared Away

Dead trees, an un-kept lawn, and trash in the yard are an eyesore. Chances are there is a rule in the HOA bylaws that all homeowners must keep their lawn tidy, and free of debris. That means it’s the owners responsibility for cleaning up.

Let’s say for example that you fail to follow this procedure. Then the owner will most likely receive a letter. It will state what procedure was violated and ask that it be rectified. Sometimes the HOA will have the ability to fine homeowner for several infractions, or failure to remedy a certain situation.

It’s always a good idea to read the HOA agreement and understand what powers they have.

Limited Parking Issues

Subdivisions are often gated and thereby these streets are designated as private. Some of them are a collection of townhomes or smaller single family homes that have limited parking for the residents and their guests.

According to our friends at Rentkidz, it’s common to hear of complaints that cars are blocking access to garages and driveways. Parking rules are often instituted in these types of communities. They might actually limit the number of cars that can be parked in guest parking,  or in front of your home. Sometimes if parking is so inadequate, your guests may have to park off of a nearby streets.

Yearly Assessments

Probably one of the biggest complaints we hear are about the yearly assessments. Yes, all homeowners are responsible for either a monthly or yearly fee. These monies will go to the operation of the HOA. This usually includes landscaping, insurance,  operation of a gate, dues to a Management Company, and sometimes for common areas like pools and tennis courts.

The fewer homeowners in your community will usually equate to a higher assessment. And the more items that the HOA covers, also will lead to higher rates.

Remember that these rates will usually go up over time. It’s not uncommon to hear owners launching complaints about the cost of their dues.

It’s important to know that reserves are usually required in case of an unplanned event. A large one time assessment can be made to cover certain incidents.

Common Pet Rules

Dogs running free off a leash can be a big no no. Pet owners often have a habit of not picking up after them. These are 2 common rules that almost all HOA’s will abide by. Enforcement usually can be complicated. Once again,  expect to receive a letter in the mail stating the rules of the community. Fines are also possible but must be listed in the bylaws.

Dogs also can make a lot of noise. Homeowners will voice complaints if they constantly hear barking coming from inside a residence. A homeowners association can have authority to enforce certain rules over noise issues.

Renter and Occupancy Procedures

Owners typically are not required to abide by occupancy rules. But an HOA can have some say in the amount of renters living within a community. They can enforce subletting rules,  and the lease lengths as well.

Remember that an HOA’s primary purpose is to increase property values. More renter’s in a community can sometimes devalue property.


Resources: https://www.hopb.co/blog/the-dos-and-donts-of-hoa-rental-restrictions