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Old 06-06-2011, 05:42 AM
 
Location: among the clustered spires
2,380 posts, read 3,876,107 times
Reputation: 869

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HOAs are only as good as the folks who run them. Thing is, they are like towns but don't have the town trappings -- e.g. you don't get time off for their elections (you have to sit through a 2-3 hour meeting), there seem to be fewer checks on the HOA leadership's powers, etc.
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Old 06-06-2011, 06:58 AM
 
Location: Home is where the heart is
15,400 posts, read 25,840,353 times
Reputation: 18992
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben 'n Jen View Post
As someone who moved here a year ago, I'll tell all of you "well move someplace else" types that HOAs are so widespread in NOVA that there aren't many places without one.
Move to Loudoun. I know lots of communities out here without HOAs.
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Old 06-06-2011, 07:29 AM
 
1,759 posts, read 1,756,951 times
Reputation: 946
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben 'n Jen View Post
We've had issues with our association as well. My 20 ft wide, 8 inch high vegetable garden in my backyard was deemed 'innappropriate' and I was told to remove it.
The veg garden thing kills me.

First, we're in a recession, why not grow your own food?
We're not talking corn rows in the front yard, here.
WTH is the problems with some tomato plants or green beans or lettuce in the back?

Second, home-grown veg just taste better. Period.

Veg gardens =/= broken down cars without plates for God's sake.
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Old 06-06-2011, 07:33 AM
 
Location: Washington DC
487 posts, read 1,213,222 times
Reputation: 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigfoot424 View Post
Move to a neighborhood without one. You'll be wishing for one after some time. Multiple broken down cars in a driveway. Cars with dead tags and not running sitting on the road. Uncut grass. peeling paint on the house. HOA's can be a PITA at times but they are also a necessary evil at times.
OH come on Bigfoot
You know the Manassas area.
You know perfectly well that there are some beautiful HOA free neighborhoods south of town.
We don't have to put up with an HOA and there is not 1 broken down car in sight. No peeling paint or uncut lawns.
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Old 06-06-2011, 07:45 AM
 
1,167 posts, read 1,801,923 times
Reputation: 804
HOA's want neighborhoods to look like the opening to weeds.
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Old 06-06-2011, 07:53 AM
 
Location: Maine
2,018 posts, read 2,713,696 times
Reputation: 2799
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigfoot424 View Post
Move to a neighborhood without one. You'll be wishing for one after some time. Multiple broken down cars in a driveway. Cars with dead tags and not running sitting on the road. Uncut grass. peeling paint on the house. HOA's can be a PITA at times but they are also a necessary evil at times.
Oh sure. No one is capable of maintaining a house without the "Big Brother" presence of the mighty HOA. West Springfield neighborhoods have few HOAs (if any), and somehow most of the residents manage to keep the exterior appearance of their homes respectable. The neighborhood near West Springfield Elementary has some of the prettiest, most meticulously maintained homes and yards I've seen in the area. No HOA.

My friend lives in an HOA in Ashburn, and she says she will never buy a home in an HOA again. They have replaced all the windows, siding, everything (expensive stuff, and all with approval of the HOA) and take meticulous care of their yard, but the HOA board always wants to be the bossy bully who plays favorites with the residents who suck up to them. Her HOA ignores the people who are actually violating rules if they are the popular people.
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Old 06-06-2011, 07:55 AM
 
9,738 posts, read 8,072,751 times
Reputation: 6348
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alltheusernamesaretaken View Post
The veg garden thing kills me.

First, we're in a recession, why not grow your own food?
We're not talking corn rows in the front yard, here.
WTH is the problems with some tomato plants or green beans or lettuce in the back?

Second, home-grown veg just taste better. Period.

Veg gardens =/= broken down cars without plates for God's sake.

Because the "recession" is temporary, and who is going to tell you WHEN it inappropriate? I don't want my neighborhood turned into a "Hooverville" because some people are now too poor to afford to live there.
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Old 06-06-2011, 08:27 AM
 
5,073 posts, read 8,648,214 times
Reputation: 2727
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fern435 View Post
Oh sure. No one is capable of maintaining a house without the "Big Brother" presence of the mighty HOA. West Springfield neighborhoods have few HOAs (if any), and somehow most of the residents manage to keep the exterior appearance of their homes respectable. The neighborhood near West Springfield Elementary has some of the prettiest, most meticulously maintained homes and yards I've seen in the area. No HOA.

My friend lives in an HOA in Ashburn, and she says she will never buy a home in an HOA again. They have replaced all the windows, siding, everything (expensive stuff, and all with approval of the HOA) and take meticulous care of their yard, but the HOA board always wants to be the bossy bully who plays favorites with the residents who suck up to them. Her HOA ignores the people who are actually violating rules if they are the popular people.
That's exactly what I've heard about HOAs from relatives who live in a Florida neighborhood with a bossy board. The HOA couldn't prevent the foreclosures and didn't do anything about the stinky fetid swimming pools when the economy tanked, but they would invoke their authority in petty, annoying ways where current homeowners were concerned.

I don't live in a neighborhood now with a HOA and, on balance, I'm glad. Some would say that the homes are a total mish-mash of styles (you name it - ramblers, split-levels, big Colonials, new Craftmans, and even a few contemporaries), but it's fun to walk around and see what's going up next, and nice to know we can landscape the yard the way we want (and grow backyard vegetables where we choose).

Having said that, there are also a few homes that aren't particularly well-maintained, and one large lot where a half-built McMansion has remained unfinished for years. I guess if there were squatters living there, or the site was dangerous for kids, I'd feel differently, but otherwise I don't really think it affects anyone's quality of life too negatively to have a few weeds sprouting in someone else's yard. But that's probably only because 90% or more of the properties are in good shape or better.
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Old 06-06-2011, 08:28 AM
 
1,759 posts, read 1,756,951 times
Reputation: 946
Quote:
Originally Posted by kevinm View Post
Because the "recession" is temporary, and who is going to tell you WHEN it inappropriate? I don't want my neighborhood turned into a "Hooverville" because some people are now too poor to afford to live there.
Hooverville? Hardly.

And we're hardly "too poor" to live where we are, but it's just smart to grow your own veg if you have the patch of land.

The snobbishness in your post is palpable.
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Old 06-06-2011, 08:48 AM
 
Location: Charlottesville
75 posts, read 200,642 times
Reputation: 61
I'm so schizophrenic when it comes to HOA's. Up until we put our house on the market 4 months ago, I was vehemently opposed to the nazi like board members that comprise our HOA. Too many, absolutely unnecessary rules. (i.e. its the boards option to enter your yard, backyard included, at any time for any reason, unannounced and uninvited). BS! BUT then I put my house on the market. My curb appeals GREAT! My house pictures on the internet look GREAT! Of the 39 scheduled showings, I had a good half-dozen not even stop in my house because of the neighborhood. Bubba down the street with his rusty van in his driveway and completely unkempt yard. Another Bubba at the other end of the street with his garage door all bent to hell 'cause he was drunk when he pulled into his driveways. Before having to sell my house, I could have careless about these Bubba's, but when they affect my bottomline and my ability to sell my home for a good price...then it gets personal. (BTW, we eventually did get a contract on our home and we're moving out of the neighborhood.)

BUT I have a co-worker who has a house she's been trying to sell in So. Florida in a gated community. No takers and when she tried to find renters, the HOA said "No" to renters! She says now about 1 in every 4 houses in the neighborhood is for sale/pre-foreclosure or foreclosure (hers is in the latter category). THAT is ridiculous! An HOA has no right to dictate whether you can rent your home...but they're OK with the whole community going into foreclosure. That's BS!

Needless to say I'm really on the fence about the pros and cons of an HOA.
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