HOA communities are more common than ever. They make for great rental neighborhoods, too, thanks to the safety, security, and attractive exteriors that they provide. Most homes are in good condition and they’re close to schools, shopping areas, and highways. When you’re looking for a property in a desirable neighborhood, an HOA community makes sense.
Owning an HOA property does come with its own challenges. Rules and regulations are somewhat infamous, with strict limits on what you can and cannot do with your own property. If you’re late paying dues and fees, there can be some unfortunate consequences.
While you balance the costs and benefits that come with HOA boards and their authority, make sure you understand what kinds of regulations you’ll need to follow.
How an HOA Benefits Boise Homeowners
The HOA maintains all common areas and amenities so you don’t have to. Some communities will offer owners and residents access to a clubhouse, pool, or basketball court. There might be green spaces that need mowing and sidewalks that need shoveling. The HOA maintains, insures, and protects those areas.
The HOA also exists to ensure your property value is protected and growing. The rules enacted by the governing body keep the properties looking pristine and the property values intact. You will not have to worry about deteriorating properties in the neighborhood.
Regulations Often Include Landscaping and Exteriors
Expect to have limits on the paint color you choose for your property. In an HOA, there are rarely bright orange or purple houses. These colors are regulated, even the trim you use. It’s possible you won’t be able to choose your own fence or install an outbuilding like a shed or even a dog house. Sometimes, you’ll have to get approval before you add a deck or plant a tree.
Your HOA can also regulate landscaping. For example, some HOAs won’t allow residents to have private vegetable gardens. Other HOAs are very strict about how high the lawn can be before a violation letter goes out.
Each association has different rules. Maybe a shed for gardening tools isn’t a problem, but perhaps you cannot hang flags or lawn ornaments. The HOA might also regulate mailboxes and swing sets as well as holiday decorations and political yard signs.
HOA Regulations Involving Pets and Children
The HOA can determine whether pets are allowed, so make sure you check a community’s pet policy before you buy a home. There may be restrictions on sizes and breeds. Some communities allow all animals, but only one per household. It will depend on your association. This will be an important consideration when you’re renting out your home.
You might need to provide proof of extra liability insurance if you move in with dogs, especially if they’re considered dangerous breeds.
If you’re buying a property in a retirement community, you may not be allowed to have children in the home. Each association has different rules, but some age-restricted communities require that all residents are 55 or older and others require at least one resident to be 55 years of age.
HOA Rules Pertaining to Noise and Nuisances
The HOA can also regulate neighborhood noise. Parties can’t get too loud or crowded and there may be restrictions on how and where your guests park. Behavior in communal spaces is also regulated. Children will likely not be permitted at the pool or in the gym without an adult.
It’s important to get to know the expectations and requirements before moving into an HOA community or purchasing a property there that you plan to rent out. Some communities will have restrictions on rental homes. You might have to wait a year before you can rent it to tenants. Or, there might be a waiting list if too many other properties within the community are already rentals.
There’s a lot to learn when you own a home in an HOA. We can help you understand the requirements and restrictions in Boise HOA communities. If you’d like some help, please contact us at Wave Property Management.
Wave Property Management is a full-service leasing and management company serving Boise as well as nearby communities such as Meridian, Garden City, Nampa, Mountain Home, and Caldwell. We work with new rental property owners as well as established investors with growing real estate portfolios.