Sometimes you swear at them and sometimes you swear by them
Let’s face it, if you are considering purchasing a home in the Phoenix area; whether it be Avondale, Scottsdale, Gilbert, or Gold Canyon, you will have to come to terms about buying a home that is part of a Home Owners Association. When a buyer purchases property that has an HOA, they automatically agree to abide by the governing documents which are the CC&R’s; Conditions, Covenants and Restrictions. While many CC&R’s are typically very boiler plate, it is a good idea to review them and make sure there are no hidden surprises. Even better, talk to your future neighbors and inquire about their experience.
If you are looking to speak out against HOAs, you’ll have plenty of company because at times they do some pretty dumb stuff and deserve the criticism. At the same time, attend any of the regularly scheduled meetings and see how many residents come to participate, offer suggestions and be involved. That number is in the single digits and I’m estimating on the high side. If residents are concerned or upset, they should get involved, contribute, and help shape the neighborhood. I’ve gotten a little upset over a couple of letters I received that I thought were unneccesary, but I also remember being thankful when a neighbor’s mother came to visit for a while in her aged travel trailer that was definitely an eye sore! I’m glad they did the dirty work of letting the neighbhor know that is not allowed. Like I said, sometime you swear at them and sometimes you swear by them. For a more legalistic viewpoint, here’s a link to a website explaining homeowner’s rights.
How high is high for an HOA?
For most homeowners, the typical monthly single family HOA assessment ranges from $30 – $80/month. But how high can HOA fees go? Could the monthly HOA fee be higher than the mortgage payment? Let’s take a look.
Imagine living in a community where there is no more than 21 lots and the homeowners have to take care of at least one lake that is 13 acres that must meet specific water quality standards. Monthly HOA $520 – $590/month at Phoenix water ski lake communities. And the CC&R’s are not boiler plate. This is the case in water ski communities such as Crystal Point, Santan Lakeside Estates, Lakeside Ski Village, and Buchli Lake.
That’s nothing when compared to some Tempe Town Lake condominiums such as Edgewater at Hayden Ferry Lakeside. A 3,100 sq.ft. condo comes with a monthly HOA fee of $1,800/month. The sister development, Bridgeview at Hayden Ferry at Lakeside has similar fees.
Where else could we find a pricey monthly HOA fee? Let’s head north to Scottsdale to Scottsdale Waterfront Residences on Camelback Rd. If you inherited a large lump sum of money and were able to pay cash for a 3,900+ sq.ft. luxury penthouse, you’d still have to deal with a $2,400/month HOA fee, but that does include underground parking and concierge service.
Now that you’ve seen how much some homeowners pay in monthly HOA fees, is your $60 – $80/month really that bad?