If you’re reading this, you’re most likely a member of the Stephens Grove Homeowners Association (HOA). What does that mean, and how can you benefit from it?
Sometimes HOAs get a bad rap from people who chafe at rules governing what they do with their homes, but on the whole we’ve found that the advantages outweigh any perceived downside. An HOA provides worthwhile amenities, and protects the value of all members’ homes. Of course, like anything, a lot depends on how you approach the relationship.
We like this site, which offers several suggestions on how you can get the most out of your HOA. Here are a few:
Know the rules. And know them going in, so you’re not surprised by something you did not realize was an obligation of membership. Not only does knowing the rules help you avoid breaking them, but knowing them before you move into the neighborhood helps you make an informed decision whether this arrangement is one you can be happy with. And if at any time you decide you have a problem with a rule, attend your HOA meeting and speak up. Your neighbors may agree with you, and decide to change the agreement.
Follow Procedure. HOA agreements anticipate all sorts of situations — making home improvements, getting a pet, or in other ways changing your living arrangements. Following the HOA procedures will help it all go more smoothly, avoid misunderstandings, and possibly save you money.
Volunteer. Get involved. Work with your neighbors to make your neighborhood a better place to live. You’ll enjoy living there much more, because you will be a part of shaping your community.
Make friends with your neighbors. You don’t necessarily have to be besties, but it’s always wise to keep open channels of communication. As we said in an earlier blog post, it’s better to talk with your neighbors and work out minor issues without the HOA even getting involved.
Explore the amenities. Take advantage of the services and amenities your HOA provides. You might as well get your money’s worth!