When it comes time to purchase a home there is a lot to think about and unless you have already lived in a neighborhood that has an HOA you probably have no clue what Covenants, Conditions & Restrictions are. Thats OK! They are very important though.
Attorney Amy Loftsgordon explains in her article that “They describe the requirements and limitations about what you can do with your property. The goal of the CC&Rs is to protect, preserve, and enhance property values in the community.”
These CC&R’s need to be reviewed carefully as to ensure that the home you are purchasing allows you to do what you want to/with your property. During the home purchase these can be requested from the HOA directly or through the Title company that is handling the Deed paperwork (your REALTOR works with Title and the HOA to get these documents for you). The good news is that there is a deadline in your contract to Purchase Real Estate to make sure that if you don’t approve of the rules you can get out of the contract and still get your Earnest Money back. No need to panic! Typically, these rules are such that you maintain your homes value by upholding the neighbors to care fro their exterior as well.
Examples: The HOA may have a rule stating that all lawns must be mowed. Not such a bad rule seeing that curb appeal is a very important resale marker. However, there could be some extremely weird rules such as: no Christmas lights on the exterior of the home, no wind-chimes, must have your garage door closed, and sometime not pets!
Make sure to take your time reviewing these documents and asking any questions that you may have. This is probably the largest purchase you will ever make, so make sure you understand all of the moving parts. One the home is purchased, getting on the HOA board is always a good idea. This is a great way to make sue that you always know what is going on and why rules are set into motion.
Feel free to reach out with any questions you may have! firstname.lastname@example.org