Home Owner Associations (HOAs) for condominiums, planned neighborhoods, and other residential properties have a long history in the U.S. but have become more popular over the past 20 years as people want to safeguard their neighborhoods, ensure the high quality of living and contribute to the investment in their homes.
HOAs are a great way to do accomplish these goals as a like-minded group of owners and residents with a vested interest in the property can plan and fund security measures, update landscaping, improve curb appeal and so much more. As a matter of fact, Zogby International reported that more than 62 million Americans live in an estimated 315,000 association governed communities. Recently Zogby conducted a survey to evaluate the satisfaction level with HOAs – and the results were pretty positive and similar to previous years. The study was sponsored by the Foundation for Community Association Research (a nonprofit organization affiliated with Community Associations Institute (CAI).
According to Zogby, these were the key findings:
• 81 percent of association residents say they get a “good” or “great” return on their association assessments; only 18 percent say they don’t;
• 73 percent say their professional community managers provide value and support to residents and the association at large;
• 76 percent say their community association rules protect and enhance property values, while only 3 percent say rules harm property values.
“These are reassuring findings…” says Foundation President Carole Murphy, CMCA, PCAM, a long-time community manager in a recent press release. “The public’s perception of many institutions has declined steadily in recent years, but that hasn’t happened to community associations.”
Zogby asked residents to cite the best reasons for HOA’s and found the following:
• Neighborhood attractiveness (24 percent)
• Less maintenance for individual homeowners (17 percent)
• Community safety (13 percent)
• Property values (12 percent).
Asked to name the worst aspects of their associations, many said (34 percent) there is nothing bad. Others cited the following:
• Restrictions on exterior improvements (15 percent),
• Dealing with neighbors (10 percent)
• Paying assessments (9 percent) to help maintain landscaping, security guards or systems, etc.