Also known as common-interest developments (CIDs), common-interest communities are usually managed through homeowners associations (HOAs). Examples of CIDs include subdivisions, condominiums, co-ops, retirement communities, planned communities, and other housing developments that are separately owned but have facilities and common areas shared by the individual unit owners.
For the purpose of managing common-interest communities, HOAs impose restrictions, which prevent homeowners from doing specific things with their property, such as using different roofing materials or painting the property with a non-standardized color.
Some of the services HOAs are expected to provide include:
- Trash collection
- Security maintenance
- Landscape services
- Pet control
- Coordination of special events
- Fencing around the perimeter
- Overseeing of the clubhouse, children’s parks, sports facilities and other common areas
- Access to records
- Fund management
In Alabama, the Homeowners Association Act is implemented requiring HOAs to register as non-profit groups with the office of the Alabama Society of State or their local probate judge. In addition, they must also make available to potential buyers public records that contain the homeowners’ association covenant, the operating budget and a list of all common areas.
For a common-interest community to be successfully managed, owners and residents should also remember their responsibilities, which include but are not limited to:
- Understanding what they own or occupy
- Paying HOA fees
- Complying with the governing rules of the community
- Maintaining separate liability and casualty policies
- Maintaining the property they occupy
- Treating HOA leaders with respect
- Offering suggestions when needed
- Using professional language and decorum when dealing with HOA leaders and management
- Avoiding personal assaults with other people living in the community
Real Property Management has the expertise to deliver excellent service to a common-interest community, thus minimizing the stress and hassles associated with association management. They provide maintenance and repairs, implement effective compliance policies and tracking systems, and handle organized and timely administrative duties.
By Dez Duran-Lamanilao