Before you sign a contract with your new home owners association, ask them what their housing association repairs and maintenance policy are. This is an important part of your association agreement, as the policy will explain in great detail how you are expected to maintain your homes.
Many homeowners wonder why their HOAs, or housing associations, only to mention a few details in their maintenance policies. Often, it is because the association simply doesn’t have the money to cover the upkeep costs for all of its properties. In these situations, the homeowners must pay for the costs out of their own pocket, and they may end up spending more money in the long run on repairs and maintenance than they would on buying the property. In order to avoid this type of situation, homeowners need to ask their association about their budget, and whether or not they have any money left over that they can use for repairs and maintenance.
If you already have a contract with your association, it will state clearly that they will cover repair costs. The homeowner is also expected to maintain the property as necessary by making sure everything is free of debris and hazards, and taking care of small repairs before major ones occur. However, if you are the new homeowner, or even a tenant who wants to purchase a home, your contract should also include a section on the homeowners’ repairs and maintenance policy. This section will require you to be responsible for your own repairs, as well as maintaining any fixtures that you own.
You are also expected to act as a damage control for all of the properties that you live in, and ensure that any damage to your home is repaired right away. If you want to add to the policy, you can also insist that you bring your family members and guests home from time to see what needs to be done, and whether or not your property has been damaged.
Although the homeowners association may require you to pay for your own repairs and maintenance, there may be a clause in the contract that allows you to add on some money. This is usually only for emergency repairs and major structural problems. You are also not required to pay for electrical repairs, unless your homeowners’ association requires it. This means that you don’t have to hire a plumber just because your home needs to be rewired, and you won’t have to pay for water damage unless your water heater breaks down in the middle of the winter.
Many HOAs also have a section in their homeowners’ association repairs and maintenance policy that outlines how much the homeowner is responsible for paying for the property taxes on their property. Some people mistakenly think that they must pay these taxes up front, when in fact, they are responsible for paying for these taxes even after they buy their house. It is important to note that this section of the policy only applies to the actual property taxes, and not to any other fees and/or assessment that the tax collector may impose.
There is also a section in your housing association repairs and maintenance policy that deals specifically with the tax collection process. If your association levies a large appraisal fee that is used for the tax collector, you will need to notify the lender about this and request that the association stop doing so. Some homeowners become upset at this, but the association is legally allowed to do this.
Homeowners that live in condominiums often receive a special credit in their agreement that they are responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of their units. This credit can help you pay off your mortgage in part by paying a portion of the cost of your condos’ annual assessment. However, be aware that this credit isn’t automatically given to you, so you should not expect this as part of your contract. If the condominium board refuses to extend the credit, you may want to check out other financing options in order to keep your interest rates down.