Top ten tips for dealing with your HOA
How you view a homeowners association is going to depend on what you have heard and what you believe. Some people think that homeowners associations are the best thing to happen because they provide services that you would normally have to do yourself and they keep the property looking great, which helps to increase your home's value. On the other hand, some people believe that homeowner's associations are horrible because the people who make up the board are power hungry and they do not care about the general upkeep of the property, all that they want to do is make changes.
Here are ten tips that you can keep in mind to deal with your homeowner's association.
You need to communicate with the board. If you do not communicate with the board, you are never going to have a good relationship with them. The reason for this is that if you want to have a good relationship you are going to need to have good communication. Never hesitate to ask questions or to question what the board is doing. You need to let your opinion be heard in a positive manner.
Get involved with the homeowner's association and participate. In order to maintain a positive relationship with your homeowner's association you are going to need to get involved with the board. This can be done through reading the newsletter that they put out each month and by voting in the annual board elections. You can also attend the monthly board meetings or even become a board member. There are many things that you can do to get involved with the homeowner's association so that you can help make positive changes.
Never assume that the board does not care. In most cases, the board will consider any circumstances that affect lot maintenance, violations, or anything else that can affect the community. The board just cannot assume certain things, you are going to need to call them and talk to them about what is going on so that they can work with you on the issue.
In order to fully understand what the homeowner's association is and what they do you need to take the time to learn about them. There are numerous things that you can do to learn about homeowner's associations including reading books or attending board meetings. By learning about homeowner's associations, you will find out how some can be power hungry, while others work hard to make the neighbor great.
Expect the best out of your homeowner's association. The board is not made up of some group that is out to get you and manage your homeowner's association. The board is made up of your own neighbors, who want the best for their neighborhood. Since you are paying for the services you should also expect the best, if things aren't going along, as they should be make it a point to talk to your board to see if things can't be changed.
If you have something that you want to take up with the board make sure that you plan ahead. The reason for this is that the board needs time to respond to your requests and questions. By giving them plenty of notice, they can provide you with the best answers and assistance.
If you plan on making any kind of changes to your house be sure to obtain the approval for all architectural changes. If you request these changes ahead of time, you can avoid problems, as well as fines. Approvals for these changes are only made once a month at board meetings.
If you receive any violations, fines, or late fees you can appeal them if you do not think they were warranted. Never assume that the board won't listen to your appeal or try to work with you to fix the problem. In most cases, they will do everything that they can to work with and get the situation resolved.
Learn to appreciate your board, as long as it is full of people who care. Many times the board members are there to help you resolve problems and to fix things for the best of the community. These people do not get paid for their positions, they simply volunteer what time they have to serve you and your community.
If you do not like how things are going then you, need to do something to help change it. Run for a position on the board so you can start making the changes that you feel are needed. You can also just make your board aware of what you think is needed to make things better because the board is always looking for feedback and input on what is going on.