There are thousands of communities across the country that utilize a Home Owners Association system. That means millions of American’s face specific requirements in how they maintain their homes.
While an HOA can be beneficial and might be exactly what you’re looking for in a community, there are many factors to consider before moving into a neighborhood governed by an HOA.
These are some basic points to ponder to make sure you move into the community that is the best fit for you and your family.
Know what you want
Before you make any big real estate decision, it’s imperative to lay out what exactly you want, what you are prepared to compromise on, and conditions that you absolutely won’t sway on. Think about your family as they are now, and where you plan to be in the future. If you have or plan to have kids, you might demand certain characteristics that a newlywed couple or retirees do not.
Are you a planner, or go with the flow?
One of the biggest benefits of an HOA or planned community (for some) is just that—it’s planned. You will be guided by set rules that can help determine everything from the type of fence you buy to whether or not you can own a pet.
This might be the ideal situation for you if this type of structure sounds ideal, but if you’re the type to make your own decisions and not be tied down by set rules and restrictions, a community with an HOA is probably not the best choice for you.
Make yourself comfortable
You won’t really know what a community has to offer until you live there for a few weeks or months. But it’s a good idea to drive or walk around, talk to local shop owners, and familiarize yourself with the neighborhood before making any big decision. After a few times around you will hopefully be able to picture yourself fitting in, or know that it’s not the right place.
The future of the neighborhood
Take a look at how the neighborhood has changed through the years. Is it currently under a lot of development? Does it seem to be in a downhill trend with a lot of turnover? Even if you fall in love with the neighborhood as it is now, that doesn’t mean there won’t be big changes in the years to come that you might not be as comfortable with. These changes aren’t always foreseen, but you can make assumptions based on trends over the last ten or fifteen years.
Moving to a new community is an exciting change, but can also be a scary decision. Make sure you make the right one by considering these tips!