Why Do You Have to Pay HOA Fees?

Purchasing a condo in San Clemente is the most affordable way to own real estate in this beautiful coastal city, but the sale’s price is not the only cost you will incur.  Almost every San Clemente condo and townhome community will have additional payments to your Homeowners Association called HOA fees, and these are typically paid on a monthly basis.  Not only that, but select communities have multiple HOA assessments, which can be very confusing to the average homebuyer.  So what exactly are HOA fees, and why do you have to pay them?

A Homeowners Association is comprised of current property owners in your specific San Clemente condo community tasked with administering and upholding the rules and regulations of your community.  HOA dues go towards maintaining the common use areas of your community, which is quite different from owning a detached home in San Clemente.  With single-family homes purchased fee is simple, you own a lot of land and any improvements (i.e. the house) on it; in condo communities, you own the unit and a divided interest of the community common areas with the other residents.  Monthly HOA dues go towards the maintenance of these common areas, which can include landscaping, driveways and interior streets, community areas with pools and clubhouses, community parks, and other amenities.  HOA dues will also cover damages to exterior portions of your condo, including the roof of the building or an attached balcony.  Some communities will even include utilities in the monthly HOA dues, the more typical ones being trash, sewer, and water. Interested in owning San Clemente Real Estate? Check out Talega Homes and see why this is one of the most sought after neighborhoods in San Clemente.

While this is an extra cost tacked on to your mortgage, you do not have to arrange and pay for the maintenance and utility costs associated with owning a detached single-family home – these costs are grouped together for you with no hassle or setup.  Also, most condo communities feature amenities not found in a single-family neighborhood, such as a pool, fitness center, or clubhouse; the best part is you receive access to these amenities without any responsibility to maintain them.

From time to time, a San Clemente condo community may have multiple HOA dues where the second one is called a “special assessment.”  Special assessments tend to be levied when a specific project affecting all homeowners is required in the community, such as painting the exteriors or replacing all of the garage doors.  Some HOAs, but not all, allow the entire community to vote on any special assessments; you will want to thoroughly review the HOA’s rules and regulations to find out who determines dues increases and special assessments – the HOA board or the community majority.

Ultimately, living in a San Clemente condo will require you to pay HOA dues, but the benefits are that you have access to nice amenities and avoid the maintenance headaches associated with owning a single-family home.  One of the best parts of living in a condo community is the closeness you will feel to your neighbors; and remember, they are paying monthly HOA dues just like you.  If you want to make changes to the quality of life in your San Clemente condo community, join the HOA board – your actions could make your community’s lifestyle that much better for everyone.