Many Communities in the Denver area have a home owner’s associations, especially in newer suburban neighborhoods. And although HOA’s are great for insuring that your community looks nice and for providing amenities. It’s important that homeowners do their homework before closing on a home to insure that the home owners association covenants in their new neighborhood won’t cause problems for them down the road.
In Colorado, the MLS listing will state whether or not a home is part of a home owners association. The MLS will also state the HOA dues, what amenities are provided by the HOA and contact information. Unfortunately, homebuyers will not get full access to HOA documents until they are already under contract. Typically these documents are delivered to the homebuyer by the title company within seven days of going under contract. However, if something is particularly concerning to you as the homebuyer, it may be worth your time to look at the HOA’s website or try to contact them by phone before you even put in an offer on a house.
Common restrictions of HOA’s to consider:
Most HOA’s require residents to have any changes to the home approved by the HOA. This includes just about anything you can think of that will change the exterior appearance of your home including paint color, fencing, patios, decks, major landscaping and children’s play equipment.
The neighborhood that I live in is pretty strict. When my neighbors decided to put a swing set in their yard, they were required to get sign off from surrounding neighbors.
Some HOA’s restrict the use of homes and will not allow a home based business like a hair salon or daycare. If you plan to run your business out of your home, be sure to check the covenants.
Some communities have restrictions on renting out your home. Typically most detached home communities will allow rentals but they may limit the length of the lease and not allow short term rentals.
Many HOA’s have rules against overnight street parking. Keep this in mind if you have a boat or RV that you may want to park out in front of your home a few days before or after a trip.
When purchasing an attached home it can be even more important to understand what is included in the HOA. Most attached home HOA’s cover exterior maintenance but check to see if they cover the roof. If not, you may be charged a special assessment at some point to replace the roof of your home. Also, check to see if insurance is included. If so, you will only need to purchase a policy that covers your personal property.
HOA’s are great in many ways, just be sure to familiarize yourself with the covenants to avoid unwanted surprises after you purchase your new home.
To find a your new home in the Denver area, contact Courtney Murphy today!