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Buyers Blog Update 9/1/2021

Neighborhood and Condominium Associations


A buyer must consider being part of an association when buying a single-family home, townhouse, or condominium.  Before looking at the advantages and disadvantages of being part of a neighborhood or condominium association, please take a quick look in the mirror.  If you despise being told what to do and fight being subjected to rules with every fiber of your being, then don’t buy a property that is part of a neighborhood or condominium association.  Your home should provide a place to rest and being forced to follow rules you consider unnecessary and to abide by decisions from those you may not respect or dislike, can make living in your home intolerable.  Neighborhood and condominium associations are not the right fit for everyone.

Advantages to being part of a well-run neighborhood and/or condominium association include:

  • Convenient access to common areas and amenities provided at a lower cost.
  • Minimum standards and rules keep individual properties from becoming run-down and negatively affecting your home and environment.
  • Periodic inspections and reports can serve as a reminder to complete routine maintenance and avoid more expensive problems down the road.
  • Neighborhood events can provide opportunities to make new friends.

Disadvantages of being part of a neighborhood and/or condominium association include:

  • You must pay for amenities and services that you may not use.
  • Association boards are run by volunteers and can be sources of power struggles and abuse.
  • Poorly run associations can cost individual owners dearly in the form of expensive maintenance fees and/or assessments.
  • Poorly maintained common areas and amenities can negatively affect your home and environment.

The buying process does involve steps to make sure you can evaluate how an association is run prior to making an expensive commitment.  Those steps and documents will be covered in another article.  The first step is to determine if even being part of a well-run association is the right fit.

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