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Old 10-03-2012, 12:56 PM
 
34 posts, read 92,748 times
Reputation: 28

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I'm hoping that someone can provide some input on what is typically included in HOA fees in the south OC area. I fully realize that these fees can vary from one complex to another. However, what I'm trying to do is determine if it is cost justifiable to pay $300 - $500 per month for "exterior maintenance".

Here are some specific questions relative to this topic:
  • Are water and trash typically included in these fees?
  • If so, are there any additional water and trash charges that the homeowner must pay directly to the utility company?
  • Is insurance included?
  • If so, does it cover everything that a typical homeowner's policy does?
  • Does it include all exterior maintenance (including new roof, painting, landscaping, etc...)?
For those of you who are currently subject to these fees, do you feel that they are fairly assessed?

Thanks,
Sammy
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Old 10-03-2012, 01:13 PM
 
Location: LA/OC
1,083 posts, read 1,967,476 times
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Just like the fees themselves, HOAs can vary on what they offer. Speaking for my association...

- Water and trash are included, no additional water/trash charges outside of HOA dues
- Insurance for the HOA, but not for you. You still have to get homeowners insurance. The HOA's insurance will cover damages to your property in some cases. For example, a shared pipe leaked water between adjoining units in my neighborhood. The HOA's insurance covered the repairs and replacement flooring cost.
- It covers exterior maintenance of the landscaping, pools, tennis courts, etc.
- It covers exterior paint, repaving and roofs (our roof was recently redone)
- It pays for 24 hour gate guarded security (I use this term loosely)

If the community has a gym, and/or other amenities (playground, dog park, etc), you're also paying for the upkeep of that. HOAs in South County tend to run a little higher than in North, but the newer developments tend to have more amenities too. The costs can be somewhat justifiable, depending on how much it is and what it covers.
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Old 10-03-2012, 02:14 PM
 
Location: Las Flores, Orange County, CA
26,343 posts, read 88,079,748 times
Reputation: 17662
Quote:
Originally Posted by sammy1224 View Post
I'm hoping that someone can provide some input on what is typically included in HOA fees in the south OC area. I fully realize that these fees can vary from one complex to another. However, what I'm trying to do is determine if it is cost justifiable to pay $300 - $500 per month for "exterior maintenance".

Here are some specific questions relative to this topic:
  • Are water and trash typically included in these fees?
  • If so, are there any additional water and trash charges that the homeowner must pay directly to the utility company?
  • Is insurance included?
  • If so, does it cover everything that a typical homeowner's policy does?
  • Does it include all exterior maintenance (including new roof, painting, landscaping, etc...)?
For those of you who are currently subject to these fees, do you feel that they are fairly assessed?

Thanks,
Sammy
I think condos/townhomes HOA fees are higher than SFR. In Ladera Ranch for example, SFRs are around $200 but condos are double that (so I've read on CD a couple years ago).

I think most SFRs cover amenities and common area landscaping. Normally (I think) trash, electric, gas, water, taxes, etc are covered by the property owner.
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Old 10-03-2012, 03:06 PM
 
11,715 posts, read 37,989,558 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles View Post
I think condos/townhomes HOA fees are higher than SFR. In Ladera Ranch for example, SFRs are around $200 but condos are double that (so I've read on CD a couple years ago).

I think most SFRs cover amenities and common area landscaping. Normally (I think) trash, electric, gas, water, taxes, etc are covered by the property owner.
Yeah attached houses always have higher HOAs. Where my parents live there's an HOA and a mix of SFRs and condos. Everyone pays $50/mo in dues and the condo owners pay another $215/mo. Everyone has access to the same parks and pools so I guess the difference is for exterior maintenance.
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Old 10-03-2012, 04:14 PM
 
Location: Huntington Beach, CA
5,886 posts, read 11,924,957 times
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my condo HOA fees are $400/month. Water, Trash, Exterior Maintenance, Pool, Spa et al.

I consider it a pretty decent deal since I was paying well over 500 month, plus my time when I owned a traditional home and felt like I was a slave to it.
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Old 10-03-2012, 05:38 PM
 
11,715 posts, read 37,989,558 times
Reputation: 7541
What the heck were you doing to spend over $6000/yr on house maintenance?
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Old 10-03-2012, 07:56 PM
 
34 posts, read 92,748 times
Reputation: 28
Thank you all for providing this information.

I've pulled some figures on my current SFH in a Chicago suburb and have come up with the following monthly costs:
  • Water - $100/mo.
  • Trash - this is part of our property taxes and therefore difficult to determine - my guess is $40/mo.
  • Lawncare - mowing and turning dirt a few times a year - $700/season or approximately $100/mo.
  • Complete roof replacement every 20 years - $8,000 or $33/mo.
  • Vinyl siding needs no maintenance.
  • No paint on any exterior portion.
Total estimated monthly cost: $273

I guess the extra amenities (pool, etc...) would increase this cost. As such, it appears that the fees being charged by OC HOAs do not appear to be over the top. Am I missing anything?


Thanks,
Sammy
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Old 10-03-2012, 08:27 PM
 
2,654 posts, read 5,053,314 times
Reputation: 1929
Quote:
Originally Posted by sammy1224 View Post
I'm hoping that someone can provide some input on what is typically included in HOA fees in the south OC area. I fully realize that these fees can vary from one complex to another. However, what I'm trying to do is determine if it is cost justifiable to pay $300 - $500 per month for "exterior maintenance".

Here are some specific questions relative to this topic:
  • Are water and trash typically included in these fees?
  • If so, are there any additional water and trash charges that the homeowner must pay directly to the utility company?
  • Is insurance included?
  • If so, does it cover everything that a typical homeowner's policy does?
  • Does it include all exterior maintenance (including new roof, painting, landscaping, etc...)?
For those of you who are currently subject to these fees, do you feel that they are fairly assessed?

Thanks,
Sammy
Fees vary WILDLY from community to community, as does what the homeowner gets in return for them. My experience has been that the utility, trash and any insurances inclusons are usually only in attahced housing communities.

For detached housing most include exterior maintainace - landscaping & maintainence of community areas, and sometimes of your front or side yards as well. Many HOA's also fund community amenities like pools, soem parks, tennis courts, etc. Also covered is neighborhood "security" patrols, usually just enforcing neighborhood parking rules. You will still have to have homeowners insurance, pay utilities and trash. When we were house shopping we occaionally stumbled over older SFR developments that included basic cable in the dues, but it was few and far between.

Lastly many communities have "Stacked" HOA's. where you pay for your immediate neighborhood and then your larger community. For instance - I pay 2 sets of dues - one for my neighboorhood HOA and it covers all the things I listed above, including landscaping of my front yard. Then there is another set of dues to a "village" HOA that pays for pools, parks, and village landscaping. Its a little under $200/ month for me all in, but it keeps the area up and my family makes ample use of all the parks, etc. so I find it fair.
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Old 10-04-2012, 06:56 AM
 
Location: Huntington Beach, CA
5,886 posts, read 11,924,957 times
Reputation: 3951
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeCalifornia View Post
What the heck were you doing to spend over $6000/yr on house maintenance?
I like to keep where I am living in nice condition, There was always something and it added up.

Had the lawn redone, drive way, lawn care, lawn equipment purchasing and maintenance, tree removals, gopher problems, snow removal, electrical issues, (current HOA takes care of that, too), air conditioning issues (don't need AC now). Trash and water.

We also had a $500 / year Community association fee which gave us access to the lakes and community center.
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Old 10-04-2012, 09:03 AM
 
Location: Las Flores, Orange County, CA
26,343 posts, read 88,079,748 times
Reputation: 17662
Quote:
Originally Posted by DinsdalePirahna View Post
I like to keep where I am living in nice condition, There was always something and it added up.

Had the lawn redone, drive way, lawn care, lawn equipment purchasing and maintenance, tree removals, gopher problems, snow removal, electrical issues, (current HOA takes care of that, too), air conditioning issues (don't need AC now). Trash and water.

We also had a $500 / year Community association fee which gave us access to the lakes and community center.
You can hire me. I'll do all that for $450/month, with the 10% City-Data Forum discount.
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