When living in a condo or HOA, assessments are a fact of life. The fees that homeowners pay to their association are determined by a number of variables. The maintenance and management expenses that are necessary, as well as the number of homeowners in the association, all all factors. Every homeowner can do their part to keep the dues down and keep their community inviting.
The first step to lower assessment levels is to simply pay the dues. When a homeowner purchases a home and reviews the HOA documents, they are aware of the fees required. At that point one becomes a member of the community and has a responsibility to its upkeep. When owners do not pay their dues, it puts a strain on the other owners to “pick up the slack”, so to speak. This means that the amount of operating funds that was budgeted at the beginning of the fiscal year isn’t as high as was planned.
Paying assessments on time will save time and money on postage and processing for reminders and late notices. Some homeowners cannot pay their fees in due time, in which case management companies and the community’s Board of Directors will gladly work with homeowners to create a payment arrangement. There are ways to make sure your dues get paid that will not alter the cost of the communities already set dues.
When using common areas in a community, homeowners can easily clean up after themselves. By picking up litter and other debris, the frequency of professional maintenance may be cut down for common areas. By replacing some of the plants for native water-efficient plants, you can save the association on the watering and upkeep in those items.
With the whole community working together to keep costs down, it only takes simple steps to keep association fees from increasing. Every member of a community can improve the community and truly make a difference in the beauty of the association and cost of homeowner fees.
Ultimately, the best way to lower your HOA dues is to get involved with the association. This could mean volunteering for a particular committee or running for an office for your Board of Directors. By involving yourself with the HOA, you will learn more about how it operates, as well as how to save costs.