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Subject: Your Monthly dues..... how much do you pay??
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Author Messages
PaulM
(Pennsylvania)

Posts:1347


02/19/2007 5:50 AM  
RobinS1:
A management firm is not necessarily needed for all communities--only those who seem to be in financial trouble by not being competent enough to manage their own. This is not pointing a finger--just being realistic to know when the Board needs help--after all, there are few of us who have had previous experience in the actual money management of community living.

A reputable management company is a great resource for Board Members who do not and cannot know all. And, after all, it is the Board who is answerable to the residents as to how well they are spending the dollars coming in each month--and are 'we' getting the most for our money.

Roger, maybe its time to point us in the direction of all the benefits a mgmt. company offers--actual tasks an assn. can assign to a mgmt. company. I seem to remember your post sometime ago on this issue. Thanks.

PaulM
RogerB
(Colorado)

Posts:5067


02/19/2007 7:27 AM  
Posted By PaulM on 02/19/2007 5:50 AM
Roger, maybe its time to point us in the direction of all the benefits a mgmt. company offers--actual tasks an assn. can assign to a mgmt. company. I seem to remember your post sometime ago on this issue. Thanks. PaulM

Attached is a link to our sample management agreement. It lists our servcies offered. We often save HOAs more than we are paid. This is accomplished by decreasing expenses for contractors, legal, management fees, insurance; and increasing income from assessments and investments. Convenant compliance and guidance to the Board on proper procedures to follow are important items a good managing Agent will provide.


Attachment: 1219275881871.doc

PaulM
(Pennsylvania)

Posts:1347


02/19/2007 7:45 AM  
JohnR4 & RobinS1:
If you refer to the document Roger noted, you will see the many benefits a management company can provide a community on behalf of their Board. It does not absolve the Board, however, from seeing that all is done according to your community's covenant documents.
For JohnR4 who posted the original question, if you note point D on page 2 it explains accounting reports. These reports are vital in knowing, at any given time, how your community is fixed financially.
Good Luck, JohnR4, in your quest for a solution to your monthly dues situation.
Thank you, Roger.
PaulM
PaulM

TeresaG1
(California)

Posts:3


02/20/2007 1:51 PM  
We are new condo owners and our HOA's are an unbelievable $342.00. Yes!. What can you do about this?. Pinole,Ca. I have no Ideal what goes were and about how much. It's about 75 units. I pool that is inopperable and will continue to be. Our meetings are on nights that I can not attend. Help me understand this new system. I am a complete virgin to this me and my husband.
RobinS1
(Louisiana)

Posts:10


02/21/2007 6:39 PM  
Theresa,
I dont know much, but I am a new president of a new neighborhood. I have found out that this is YOUR home owners association and you can DEMAND a print out of expenses to see where every penny of your money as well as your neighbors is going. A lot of people dont attend, and they have to show everyone and anyone where money is going. So, dont go with the flow, learn your rights and be conscious of your money and find out where it is going.
GlenL
(Ohio)

Posts:5491


02/21/2007 11:18 PM  
Teresa, before you "DEMAND" you might simply try "requesting" the documents you desire from the Board or MC. I'm sure they will be more receptive and much more likely to help you and point you in the right direction rather than if you storm into the office and start demanding things, as my mama used to say: "You'll catch more flies with honey than you will with vinegar." Now, if they are not forth coming, then you let them know that you have an absolute right to the document.

Be aware that they have a right to charge you a reasonable copying fee and for the time it takes to prepare the documents and postage upfront, so be prepared for that. There are a couple of websites I would recommend besides this one. Click on the link at the right to Community Associations Network and
http://www.davis-stirling.com/

Studies show that 5 out of 4 people have problems with fractions
JoyceS1
(Indiana)

Posts:140


02/22/2007 5:13 AM  
Theresa:

When I read your post, my initial thought was "Wow, I wish our homeowners would, at the very least, LOOK at the financial data that is provided them."

We have a small group of people who believe that money for services magically drops down from the sky.

A few years ago, I examined our financial situation. I became actively involved when I saw the writing on the wall. Since my involvement, I have had sleepless nights wondering how we are going to catch up on funding the maintenance not to mention funding the reserves. It has been frutrating trying to educate people who do not want to be educated about the HOA finances.

Maybe those who do not access their HOA financial information are better off than those of us who have scrutinized it. They probably sleep better at night!

Every homeowner has a right to know where the money is going. They are equally responsible for understanding the HOA lifestyle they chose and what it takes to maintain the HOA services.

Just my two cents worth. Oh, wait.....I don't have two cents to spare! (smile)

Joyce

TeresaG1
(California)

Posts:3


02/22/2007 2:13 PM  
Thanks to all. I will keep you posted on everything when I receive the paper work. This is all very much good information that I do plan to use in a respectful manor. And to ask for it and no to demand it. Thanks again.! until then.
KevinC2
(Michigan)

Posts:15


02/25/2007 10:27 AM  
Hey Everyone...I am new to HOATalk and have been looking for a site like this for a while. I have recently been appointed to my association's board after only 12 months of residency. I live in a 24-unit complex with value of the condos ranging from $90k to $180k, located in metro Detroit (MI). The complex is split into two different buildings with 12-units in each building. We have two separate pools (small) and parking spaces for each unit. Guests park on the street. Included with our dues are heat and water (and electricity for the common areas). We are not currently placing any money into our reserves and currently do not have enough revenue to meet our expenses. I am an accountant/auditor by profession and was floored when I realized the true financial state of the association. I currently pay $200 per month and the highest dues in my association are $368. We have constantly had talks of raising dues, but everyone already feels we pay too much. The complex used to be apartments and was cosmetically re-done by a developer in 2002 (only on the inside). Our common areas continue to deteriorate and in the next 5 years we are looking at roughly $50,000 in improvements. Since the board was put in place, there has been very poor financial management and no consideration for the common areas of the association that used to be in good condition, but have weathered. I hope to use the information from this thread to present to the co-owners at a special meeting the board has called in a few months.

Kevin
Board President
The Courtyards Association
GlenL
(Ohio)

Posts:5491


02/27/2007 1:40 AM  
KevinC2 you might also use the search feature on the main page and put in the word reserves for many interesting posts on this subject.

Studies show that 5 out of 4 people have problems with fractions
RandalR
(Tennessee)

Posts:98


03/05/2007 7:09 PM  
PaulM:

Our 20-year old association is voluntary in that the 263 households can decide on a yearly basis whether they want to pay dues or not. The HOA is run by a 7-person Board with no outside help. I'm probably the only person that's ever taken the time to try and educate themselves on how HOA's are supposed to be run, and ours has much to learn from the rest of you!

The Board is currently trying to transition to a mandatory status that would require all households to pay HOA dues. In the scheme of things it's a good direction to be going in though I don't support it because the revised covenants give the BOD way too much authority such as being able to change the Bylaws by a simple vote of the BOD. They can essentially do about anything they want without having to be accountable to the residents. The funny thing is that one homeowner had his attorney threaten a lawsuit if a lien were ever filed against their property. The HOA is run so haphazardly that my money would be on the resident winning any suit. So now the revised covenants have a clause that liens can only be filed against "new" residents that move into the neighborhood. Only the new residents will be under the mandatory aspect of HOA dues, for the rest of us it's business as usual.

This years all inclusive fee of $215 just happens to be the same amount that's being thrown about as the annual fee under the revised covenants (which have not passed and are still be voted on almost a year later). It's got residents confused into thinking that the covenants actually did pass and that dues are now mandatory! If 250 of the 263 household actually joined and paid then the HOA would raise the money they need to cover annual operations. In reality I project that only 180-190 households will actually join for various reasons. Even in a good year with dues set at $130/yr we could only get 220 households to join and that was before throwing the recreation area into the mix, the funding of which is a really touchy subject with those that don't want to pay for something they'll never use.

We have a ~$56K reserve and half of it is going to be blown in the first year of this stupid experiment! Our only other source of income to offset this deficit is the associate memberships to our pool/tennis area that we sell to people outside the neighborhood. Just to make the associate memberships more appealing, we're going to continue to close our pool weekdays from 5pm-7pm so the swim team can have a convenient evening practice time for those kids that are too lazy to get up for early practices like all the other swim teams in the town do!

In a way I'm glad I wasn't reelected to another term. At least I won't have to explain why the experiment chewed up 1/2 our reserve and didn't quite work out the way everyone was told it would.

R
RogerB
(Colorado)

Posts:5067


03/06/2007 6:37 AM  
[quote]Posted By RandalR on 03/05/2007 7:09 PM
The Board is currently trying to transition to a mandatory status that would require all households to pay HOA dues. In the scheme of things it's a good direction to be going in though I don't support it because the revised covenants give the BOD way too much authority such as being able to change the Bylaws by a simple vote of the BOD. They can essentially do about anything they want without having to be accountable to the residents. The funny thing is that one homeowner had his attorney threaten a lawsuit if a lien were ever filed against their property. The HOA is run so haphazardly that my money would be on the resident winning any suit. So now the revised covenants have a clause that liens can only be filed against "new" residents that move into the neighborhood. Only the new residents will be under the mandatory aspect of HOA dues, for the rest of us it's business as usual. [/quote]

Randal, regarding giving the Board sole authority to approve amendments to the By-laws I don't think it is a good idea. I suggest deleting all details regarding governing aspects of the HOA from the CC&Rs and placing them in the By-laws. The By-laws could include "These By-laws may be amended at a duly called meeting of the members where at least 2/3 of those members voting have voted to approve the proposed amendments."
NancyM2
(California)

Posts:249


03/09/2007 8:06 AM  
575 single family homes

Orange County, Calif
80 acers of greenbelt to maintain
no other aminities
resurves fully funded
expensive "in house" attorney 160K a yaer
Ombudsman 86K a year

NancyM2
NancyM2
(California)

Posts:249


03/09/2007 8:05 PM  
See last post ~~I forgot to add our dues are $150.00 a month
NancyM2
RandalR
(Tennessee)

Posts:98


03/10/2007 4:52 AM  
RogerB - I think I'm getting too far off topic for this forums subject so I'm going to start a separate post later to see how other BOD's handle their meetings. See you there. R
RudyR1
(Oklahoma)

Posts:1


07/30/2007 8:22 PM  
Looks like this thread is petering out so let me add my little bit.

I have been the treasurer for 6 years for our 48 unit, homeowner managed, Townhome association that is located in SW Oklahoma. (www.evoa.us)

Six years ago, the previous treasurer submitted a budget and stated -I don't know how we are going to pay the bills next year, maybe we won't paint one of our units-(thats what got me the treasurers job, as I didn't believe we were in such sorry shape. We were!)

We are by no means financially well, our current dues are $92 per month but, provided lawn care/maintenance/tree trimming for our 2.6 acre common area. We also maintain a pool during the summer months (it gets really cold in the winter). We also do non-structural repairs (wood replacement) and painting once every 6 years (we do not do roofs, downspouts, brick, windows, etc). Current annual expenses are about $12K for common area, $12K for paint, $8-10K for wood replacement, $5K for pool, $2K insurance, $2.5K utilities. Thats the big ticket items.

We also manage a well for our sprinkler system.

Our dues increases are limited to 10% per year unless 75% of the people vote for a higher increase. The cry of fixed income usually comes into play every year. Owners understand all costs are increasing due to inflation but believe that shouldn't apply to this association. In reality, by shopping around for services we managed to build up a $24K reserve but that will be gone when our drive is repaved/patched next month. That only took 4 years of close management of our funds to get ahead.

Being part of this board has been really interesting and I have and will continue to enjoy it. The biggest complaint is the apathy among the homeowners. At a standard monthly meeting we have about 4-8 people in the audience. The annual meeting drives a lot higher number because we have elections during that meeting.

Really just wanted to jump in and do a post. Maybe this will generate additional comments.



WandaM
(California)

Posts:19


08/07/2007 5:54 PM  
I am located in Northridge, CA. we have about about 21 buildings 192 units could be more. Our dues varies from $194.66-$245.17 per month. I pay $267.81 per mo. with the new 20% retroactive charge due to unexpected costs to operate our Association in 2007 per Notice received. The new retroactive amounts are to be payed over the next 4 months. Many Home Owners are very upset because last year we were increased 15% now is 20%. I've being living at this location for the past 6 years and the management company does not return calls, they do not reply to certified letters sent regarding the upkeep/ maintenance of the grounds. The gardener a crew of two men is the company who cleans the laundry rooms instead of a janitorial service, so you can imagine what the floor, baseboards and walls look like (disgusting).

We have no pretty flowers or grass to beautify our homes, our awnings are falling apart, the sprinkler system is old and wastes a lot of water...the catwalk gets more water then the plants. The unit rear balcony wood fence are rotted through and falling apart. The management company does not allow installion of Satellite dish on the roof (we have a flat roof). We have no Access to the gym it has been closed for many years. The swimming pool was closed for an entire summer and I felt bad for the kids it is hot like hell in the valley.We requested at one of the meetings for the use of the Rec Room for home owners to discuss issued prior to meeting and we were denied on the spot. The buildings needs a complete upgrade or perhaps I should say face lift. We are very frustrated and will like to replace the management company. Can you please advise?

The only things the have corrected twice was the repair of the pool after work was completed the manager realized there was a leak which should of been detected the first time so they had to break down the plaster and start all over again. No gutter replacement yet and Laundry drywall have holes which need patch repair, copper pipes remain exposed. We really need help. Looking foward to your feedback. Thank you
KathleenR
(California)

Posts:13


08/21/2007 10:40 PM  
WOW! We are in Ontario, CA and pay $300 per month for a pool and jacuzzi. Nothing else!!! Makes your dues not seem so high! :o)
KathleenR
(California)

Posts:13


08/21/2007 11:14 PM  
Wanda, I wasn't making light of your situation in my previous comment!Our place is not as bad as yours, but for an average of $300 per month (90 units) you'd think we were living at the beach and the PMC wants to increase to nearly $500 per month. I am a new Board Member and along with a few of the current Board Members, we are now looking into budget! Hope there is a light at the end of the tunnel for you!
StacyS1
(Louisiana)

Posts:1


08/22/2007 6:18 AM  
I am the President of a HOA in Denham Springs, Louisiana, which has 557 single family homes, 73 of which I have identified as rental homes. When finished, the subdivision will have 741 homes. Last month the Developer advised that they be adding an additional filing to the subdivision (location and number of homes undetermined). The original builder (who is also a co-developer of the subdivision)sold the undeveloped or unfinished lots to a new nationwide homebuilder in March 2006, who subsequently created a second and separate HOA for the 2 undeveloped filings in October 2006.

We have 7 retention ponds which have not been turned over to us yet. No land has been donated for a small playground or a mini-park. We are finishing sprinkler installation and landscaping of 4 cul-de-sac islands. We have a lighted main entrance sign, and a smaller lighted entrance sign at a 2nd entrance. There will be no clubhouse, pool, office, or any type of recreation area within the subdivision. We do not own any land, nor the streets or ditches - as the Parish (Louisiana = Parishes a/k/a County to the other 49 states!)is responsible for their maintenance and repair.

Since the inception of the HOA coming together in March 2003, as the Developer included the provision in the original Restrictive Covenants in 2002, our yearly dues have been $5.00 per month/$60.00 per year. While the Developer made a provision for the right to charge $5.00 per month, the Bylaws state that an annual budget should be prepared, voted on, which would then deternmine the allocated share to each homeowner. That has yet to happen as the prior Board members really did not involve themselves enough to fully understand the provisions, governing documents, hire an association attorney, obtain D&O insurance, etc. This has been the challenge over the last 19 months for myself and the other Board members to straightout the chaos and disorganization handed over to us (more liked dumped!) and gain the support and trust of the homeowners that we are striving to get the HOA where it should be - working for all of the homeowners. Obviously with $60.00 a year, a property mamangement company is out of the question as the local ones consulted charge $4.50 to $5.00/month per lot. Yes, the dues need to go up, and in 2008 the proposed budget will reflect the reality of what we realistically need to maintain the ponds and other common areas once they become our responsibility.

Stacy
www.southpointsubdivision.com
RogerB
(Colorado)

Posts:5067


08/22/2007 6:34 AM  
Wanda, you complained about your MC but not about your Board. The Board is responsible for proper budgeting to effectively maintain the common areas and hiring and firing the MC. I suggest the Board may be your primary problem.
RogerB
(Colorado)

Posts:5067


08/22/2007 6:47 AM  
Kathleen, good luck serving on your Board. It may open your eyes to all the costs involved which may justify $300.00/mo. BTW $500/mo for the management of 90 units seems low. Hope there are some perqs for the poor managing agent
DaneC
(California)

Posts:210


08/22/2007 1:10 PM  
Wanda, it is interesting that you have been living at your complex for 6 years, because that is exactly the time span that can cause your assessments to increase by 200%.
California law allows for an annual assessment increase of 20%, without approval of the membership. A $100.00 amount subjected to 4 years of 20% increases, becomes $207.36, which if subjected to 2 more years of 20% increases, becomes $298.60

You say -
1) the management company does not return calls, they do not reply to certified letters
2) The management company does not allow installation of Satellite dish on the roof
3) and will like to replace the management company.
4) We requested at one of the meetings for the use of the Rec Room for home owners to discuss issued prior to meeting and we were denied on the spot.

I do not get the sense from reading your post, that you are a member of the Board (from 4 above), based on that assumption, I would say, your posting was the first step, now take the second step, and get involved with your Association's affairs. It could be that you serve on a committee, or even run for office.

You did not mention, who rejected 4 above, was it the BOD or the MC rep?
Item 3 (which is because of item 1) can be accomplished, since they are your employee!
As far as item 2 is concerned, you can use this link for help
Federal Communications Commission, Information sheet on placement of Antennas.
http://www.fcc.gov/mb/facts/otard.html

As a member of the Board, you would be one of those reviewing a minimum of three contractors bids for services, so that you do not end up with gardeners in the laundry room. Since you have already identified some of the areas that need work, what do you know of the state of the association's finances - are you looking at an indefinite regime of 20% increases, and an ocassional special assessment?
WandaM
(California)

Posts:19


08/22/2007 5:57 PM  
All the home owners including Moi think our dues are quite high specially with the volume of units at property. For one we have no other services other then the pool man, a security service which stops at property nightly for five minutes then they leave immediatelly as if they're running from the devil and 2 gardeners who work landscape 7 days a week oh and tree trimmers once a year service. We have nothing fancy, No Ponds, no beautiful landscape, cemented down galvanized pipes which are rotted and awnings that looks like a hurricane pass through...HELLO! My neighbor Hoa range from $150-$175.00 built the same way, in the same year late 70's, c'mon their property is super nice, and pardon me for being so upset we are in LA County prime area not the desert looking at succulent plants.
NancyD1
(Florida)

Posts:447


08/22/2007 6:39 PM  
18 hole golf course, 10,000 sq.ft. clubhouse, restaurant, pro shop, 6 miles of streets, 24/7 security guard on gate, pool, 4 clay tennis courts, 3 lakes, basic cable, tot lot, hot tub, water outside the home, 2x weekly trash pickup, landscaping, tree trimming, green plant replacement, MC/PM, bookkeeper, 2 maintenance people, home painting every six years, power washing homes every 3 years, new exercise facility, saunas, steam rooms, and bagel brunches every Sunday morning.
The golf, restaurant and pro shop are all supported by non mandatory memberships. No equity for homeowners.
We have extensive landscaped common areas throughout the community. A very, very nice community.
I can say that we have a good deal. All of the above for $279/monthly. 389 homes, 11 year old community. The Maintenance Fees were reduced this year $24/yearly because we had an excess in the operating account, and we are well funded in our reserves.
WandaM
(California)

Posts:19


08/22/2007 6:48 PM  
DaneC

Thank you for your feedback is very well appreciated at my end.
1) In the past 5 years the MC had changed to 4 Managers, 3 of which almost had breakdowns per PM. (1a.)2006 we had a 15% increase, 2007 20% increase. 10 years ago prior to my movein 2001 there was no increase of dues maybe that's why the property looks like hell, somehow down the line maybe 15 year budget for reserves was either calculated wrong or not calculated at all maybe someone embesseled money. (2b.)last week meeting we were faced with 5 units being a little over $20k behind dues, the thing is the Vice President says one story and the MC manager says a different story about the raise in dues. Imagine damage cost from replastering pool due to a leak that was not detected at the begining or repair work, who is paying for that? of course we are, it took the plastering company almost 10 months to come out and replaster.

2) I will investigate on the satellite dish comment.

3) The management company contract renewal is up in September 1, 2007 so we may have to go on a month to month contract is is dueable until we get another MC on board that is in the works. The management company per last meeting fired the accounting company they sub work to because for the past years a lot of things apparently went wrong, no one knew about it until recently and per above comment on (2b.) is one of the reasons why are 5 units are $20K past due in association fees, nothing was done by MC????? only fired the Sub should this be followed by a lawsuit?

4) Rec room request for Home owners to have open discussions regarding our property was rejected by the Vice President of HOA.
WandaM
(California)

Posts:19


08/22/2007 7:06 PM  
NancyD1

You are naughty...thanks for letting us know how wonderful you have it consider yourself blessed and lucky. There are four true things in this life 1)Luck: Being at the right place at the right time. 2)Blessed; with you know this person who knows this person and you are liked and loved by everyone of them 3)born; with a Silver spoon and last but not least 4) Shit or should I say self absorved; when you come accross the person who just don't give a horses ass about you, me or anyone else in this world and they just don't want to make this world a better place. I respect and love life no matter what, life is good, always! or you try to make the best out of it...but things are going to change at our HOA we have a new President on board and she's good and has done property management so were looking forward for some changes. Have a wonderful evening, darling!

P.S. where are thou? in Lake Tahoe, Big Bear, Arrowhead?
WandaM
(California)

Posts:19


08/22/2007 7:09 PM  
Roger

The MC just fired the accounting sub, we became aware of this during last week meeting. Can you please clarify the responsability of a MC?
WandaM
(California)

Posts:19


08/22/2007 7:13 PM  
There is always a light shinning bright at the end of the tunnel I can't think any other way. Your budget is based on how many years?
WandaM
(California)

Posts:19


08/22/2007 7:20 PM  
NancyD1 says:
The Maintenance Fees were reduced this year $24/yearly because we had an excess in the operating account, and we are well funded in our reserves. Who is you MC? Please share your secret, we need to pick up speed here. I appreciate you feedback.
RogerB
(Colorado)

Posts:5067


08/22/2007 8:10 PM  
Wanda, your management agreement should clarify the responsability of your MC. There is no one standard, it depends on what services the Board of your HOA desires.
NormanG
(Arizona)

Posts:38


08/23/2007 8:42 AM  
In Scottsdale: Currently pay $137 a month. New board though and who knows what they will do to increase it.
JodiH
(North Carolina)

Posts:2


08/23/2007 9:18 AM  
Indian Trail North Carolina - Townhome with lawn care on small small plot - pool - fitness facility - tennis court - no free use of clubhouse - 2005 $110, 2006 $128, 2007 $148, 2008 proposed $175. Single family homes with no lawn care $765 a year.
JodiH
(North Carolina)

Posts:2


08/23/2007 9:20 AM  
Noted - $175 a month for townhomes and patio homes - single family ome are yearly.
NancyD1
(Florida)

Posts:447


08/23/2007 11:27 AM  
Posted By WandaM on 08/22/2007 7:20 PM
NancyD1 says:
The Maintenance Fees were reduced this year $24/yearly because we had an excess in the operating account, and we are well funded in our reserves. Who is you MC? Please share your secret, we need to pick up speed here. I appreciate you feedback.





Wanda, we are blessed. I am in SE Florida. The board is very active. We all spend a lot of time 20-30 hr per week in the office. For years we had the PM take care of everything. It backfired on us with 2 previous PM's. We are grooming this PM. This BOD has been active in the day to day operations. Most of us are business owners. The HOA is a business. The problem with past boards, they did not run the HOA as a business. Of course you have the personal issue, we live here, but you have to divorce yourself from that fact.

I think the secret is that each of us on the BOD have no agenda's to fulfill. We volunteered and do the best we can. We do have our disagreements, but we listen to each other and don't take everything said as a personal offense. We act as adults should act. If the vote is split, that's OK, we vote on what we each feel, is best for the community. I am very proud of what we have accomplished in a few years.
JudithC
(Virginia)

Posts:253


08/23/2007 4:33 PM  
Fairfax, Virginia. HOA. 195 Townhomes on 18 acres, approximately 10 of which is common area. 1 mile of private streets to maintain plus little more than that of sidewalks. No other amenities, no maintenance of the private homes, and no management company. The association pays for street maintenance, plowing on the streets, maintenance of the common areas, trash collection, and mowing, fertilization, and weed control of front yards. $50/month which is sufficient but not rolling in money.

I have found this thread fascinating, as there is a group in our association that wants to raise assessments because "we are so much less than other places". It doesn't seem like that is so at all when you take into account what one gets for the money.

To those that say that is comparing apples and oranges, I have a little tale about that. I worked in systems analysis. I was reading a report by someone in a firm I was working at and it went along saying "comparing these two things are like comparing apples and meat". That really make me set on my brakes. I asked him about it and he peered at me through his thick glasses and said "well, I started to say apples and oranges and then I thought 'no self respecting systems analyst would worry a bit about comparing apples and oranges' ". Whenever I hear that phrase I have to chuckle now. In this case, I think generally enough information is given so that one can compare if they really look at the answers carefully and I personally appreciate getting a sense of what other associations are doing.

WandaM
(California)

Posts:19


08/23/2007 6:29 PM  
Roger,

I will check in tthe responsability part with the new President, we are adding one more person to the board and may be removing the Vice President and another person. Thank you
WandaM
(California)

Posts:19


08/23/2007 6:39 PM  
NormanG

Good Luck! Pay close attention to what does not get done, cc by certified mail everyone; MC, PM and HOA Board President (hand deliver everything to President in front of everyone at meeting etc, make sure all you want to discuss is documented in the meeting minutes for the record. And try your best to be at the meetings. Even Hoa Board members put off a lot of things and later you are hit with surprises, additional charges...etc.
WandaM
(California)

Posts:19


08/23/2007 6:46 PM  
Well for the use of Clubhouse somebody must be responsible for the maintenance in general, there are factors to consider: damages, up keep and cleaning, by the way the PM must get paid as well for his/her time.
WandaM
(California)

Posts:19


08/23/2007 7:09 PM  
Well I get disappointed the way the Board members behave at times. I think now were in a good path with the new President and the new volunteer who just joined the board (Thank God). I am a contractor after working long hours from 6am-5pm Mo- Fri sometime Sat...and I hear my neighbors can not get results from MC, Bod or PM, and there they are knocking on my door, this is very frustrating the board runs at the speed of slugs. Anyway we just have to do the best we can to change things around. I think what will help a lot is if all the home owners can make time to get together and discuss the voting as well prior to submittal of the proxies.
BobM5
(California)

Posts:34


08/25/2007 7:21 AM  
There is a danger in comparing rates at one development with those of another. Don't look at simply the obvious Check into the insurance coverage (one carries earthquake insurance and the other doesn't), property management (one has an on-site manager, the other doesn't), reserve funding (one is fully funded, the other isn't), utilities (one heats pool to 80 degrees year round, the other stays unheated or is not heated year round), amenities (one has elevators and the other doesn't). Until you have ALL the information, forget about comparing your apples to the neighbors oranges.
RobertR1
(South Carolina)

Posts:5164


08/25/2007 4:15 PM  
65 condo units, monthly fees tiered (apportioned) probably average around 275/month. No pool, ocean front with seawall and revetment, 4 1/2 acre, large sunken garden garden, undergroung parking and presently a $500 special yearly assessment. Complex built in 1981. Total income for year around 260K. Lived here 17 years. From reading this thread is is clear to me that some of the new complexes need a reserve study and then a solid Long Range plan. We do a pretty good job and we have managed to keep up, but I'll tell you folks, the transition from developer to association is not the smooth processs you would hope for. Once the developer is gone there is going to be a ton of work to be done that could likely end up in a law suit. If your association is not looking at least five years down the line you could be asking for surprises. You absoluitely need a solid long range plan and accumulation of a Reserve fund.
After saying that, I believe few will be able to swing it for any number of reasons and you will probably end up ten years down the line going from crises to crises. A bleak picture and a very very complex problem. Right now, we have neither the real interest of any governing office we can go to for solid help or advice, and besides that the history of this kind of Board management is not noted for it's effeciency and intelligence. Noit due to the lack of many concerned smart and interested folks but more to time passing and constant management differences. You ride will be closer to a Roller Coaster than it will be a soft float down the river on an inner tube. IMHO Oh, does my association abide by my evaluation. On paper.........somewhat. In reality.............by starts and stops dependent upon the members and Board, and Gods knows what else.
KathrynM
(Louisiana)

Posts:6


09/02/2007 12:21 PM  
Stacy,

I might can work out some thngs with you on a consultant level. You sound like you need some direction. email me [email protected] I understand you cant pay for regular management fees but we could help you establish a budget, form letter etc.
KathrynM
(Louisiana)

Posts:6


09/02/2007 12:21 PM  
Stacy,

I might can work out some thngs with you on a consultant level. You sound like you need some direction. email me [email protected] I understand you cant pay for regular management fees but we could help you establish a budget, form letter etc.
MissyW
(Georgia)

Posts:22


09/02/2007 6:29 PM  
JohnR4,
Gainesville GA 152 residential single family homes. $228/yr We have no common areas. it pays for 48 street lights, front entrance (flowerbeds, landscaping contract, pinestraw), irrigation, management company etc.
TomK2
(Ohio)

Posts:39


09/07/2007 9:29 AM  
JohnR4: Owners pay various amounts depending on the amminities they have but I say how much is tooooo much? I was told of one group in Florida pays $650 a month! Is that to much? Who knows!
I think this is the best way to set your budget.

(1)What does it cost to operate your complex annully, not monthly because some months you will spend more than others. This should include every expense

(2)How much is required for reserves. This is the "stickie one" Long term reserves are what you plan on repair or replacing in years to come.

(3)Add these figures up and divide by twelve to get the monthly cost and divide that figure by the number of units in the complex to get the unit cost. Now you will have a starting budget that you, no doubt, will change every year. Do not think about what other Assocaition pay, because they could have a great many amminities or none. Some Associations pay for Cable, water, garbage etc. Remember, the best way to get voted out of office is to increase the fees !
JohnC7
(Missouri)

Posts:1


09/08/2007 2:22 PM  
Our HOA is 130 Homeowners strong, No pools or recreational Facilities. Minimal common ground maintenance; one retention pond maintenance, The streets are private and we maintain them (try to). $200 annually. Minimal reserves with over $20K annually for concrete street repair. Yes we are struggling too!
RobertR1
(South Carolina)

Posts:5164


09/08/2007 3:11 PM  
JohnC7, Follow advice of TomK.
All things considered it sounds as if you are underbudgeted. Once reserves are built up you may be able to lower them, or consider a one time assessment to build Reserves. You may be struggling but you can see the sky, some can't.
JohnD3
(Florida)

Posts:3


09/09/2007 7:04 AM  
Bradenton, Florida, 238 single-family homes in a dead resticted, non-gated subdivision. We have a community playground, built in 2004 with HOA funds, 18 assorted ponds and acres of common grounds. Our dues are $275.00 collected annually, not monthly. We do not use a management company. The board hires outside contractors to maintain the ponds and common grounds.
AikanaeR
(Arizona)

Posts:6


09/09/2007 7:53 PM  
Scottsdale Az. 85 homes, maintance of 2 community areas (includes playarea), small community pool, clubhouse (mainly used for meetings). Assesstments are $100/month which includes water, sewer, solid waste for entire community, street lights and 3 private roads. $40 of the $100 goes to reserves (not enough). The community is over 30 years old and until apx. 5 years ago, the HOA didn't even have operating cash. The dues hadn't been raised since the early 80's. I'm amazed they pulled it off for so long. Now everything needs very serious repair - except the pool. That was maintained. No reserve study (yet).

Nice message board here.
DebraA
(Arizona)

Posts:5


04/04/2008 12:28 PM  
My MONTHLY dues are 440.00 per month. That't right folks and taboot...my property looks like it should be condemned. Residents have called the city in order to have repairs conducted since management and regime ignore requests.

President of regime seems to have to have little regard for value of area or the residence who want to improve property. Although located within in 2 miles of old town Scottsdale Arizona our building compared to others should be torn down.

Other regimes as they are called -- nice eh...flowers are cared for, building maintained...not ours that is fact not just whining. We pay big bucks that is supposedly being applied. When asked to where and why our building is seemingly and yes by appearance obviously being neglected by the the over all system of management, the response is null saying we are doing all can -- but no evidence.

I can't sell my property because the area surrounding my immediate area looks a sham and property value in decline. Even though other buildings under same management group but different regime in community are mainted and some of same age. (other buildings and regimes call our building subsidized housing) We have residents in building that wanted to pay for total remodel of lobby area and were denied. They went about it in the right way -- presented design but were denied. OLD lady upstairs on board can choose awful decor for carpet and other with out residence vote. Odd isn't it. BUT we have a resident that passes away and leaves 1 mil to over all property for community ammenities for improvements -- pools, bathrooms, gym, Took some one to pass away and leave fortune to get it done...All made and yes look nice -- done by a licensed contractor? I doubt you could find that information out...it was done by local maintenance group that does work for buildings and employed by management. Hey all good but someone does a remodel on interior you need license posted on door and copy in management office before work can begin.

Anyway -- would love to hear feedback,solutions advice. It is very sad to be in one of the best locations in Old Town Scottsdale with wonderful ammenities, pay 440.00 each month see surrounding buildings who pay the same property and landscape maintained. Residents are tired of fighting and the building regime. Something is obviously not right with this area of housing, way money is being spent, disbursed and managed. Anyone know an HOA lawyer willing to take on as pro bono? I have lots of support from community...

Regards and bloom where planted.


MaryA1


Posts:0


04/04/2008 7:04 PM  
I live at Arrowhead Ranch in Glendale, AZ. We are a planned community with 1,700 members. Our HOA is comprised of about 11 communities so we're a bit spread out. We have a lot of landscaping, a number of parks and many lakes. The lakes are a big expense. Our assessments are $115/quarter and we have approx 1 million in reserves -- fully funded.
DonnaS
(Tennessee)

Posts:5671


04/05/2008 12:41 PM  

My rented condo is $298.98 per month, includes water charges. My villa is $777.00 per quarter, and my home is $324.00 per quarter for a stand alone home. All of these are in Martin County Fl. Villa and condo include outside maintenances of units and landscape.
DeborahW1
(Michigan)

Posts:10


04/06/2008 8:00 PM  
I live in Ann Arbor, MI, 188 stacked ranch style condos, $195/month includes Management fees, water(for all residents and grounds), grounds, snow removal, reserve fund, etc.
MaryA1


Posts:0


04/07/2008 6:47 AM  
Jan,

While I think this is a very commendable action of your board, I wonder if it really is legal. Assn docs say ALL members of the assn are obligated to pay annual assessments. Do yours say a member's assessments can be suspended for whatever reason? If not, don't be surprised if someone complains about this. I wouldn't be telling too many people.

My prayers are extended to your hubby and your family. Hope he comes home soon!

Take care,
Mary
LizzC
(Pennsylvania)

Posts:6


04/07/2008 1:41 PM  
I am in NEPA, North East Pennsylvania. We currently pay $970/year, $80.83 a month, for an improved lot. We have 4 pools but they are not always in working condition, 3 parks I believe, 4 clubhouses, 2 tennis courts (?), 2 basketball courts (?) and 2 man-made lakes which have a pollution problem annually. We have our own armed Public Safety Department which is much like a police department but limited powers (they can't arrest anyone), we have a Maintenence Dept. that is bigger than our towns DPW, a Welcome Center which houses the Public Safety Dept., main gate guards and some administration personnel. We also have an administration building and 2 guard shacks. There are 4 different entrances with gates at each.

Our Dues & Maintenece fees will probably go up due to the fact that our Maintenece Dept. no longer collects trash or recyclables, we now have a company which does this. We also have a dump which has not been in use for about 3 years. The Board of Directors also just purchased a T.V. station, contracted a Reserve Study group, a Public Relations firm and is looking to contract out the re-grading of an entrance and installing a drainage pipe (remind you, our Maintenece Dept. already has all the machinary needed to do this).
AnnO
(Massachusetts)

Posts:4


04/09/2008 8:02 PM  
Massachesetts. Six units. No pool,ect. $279.00 for 2,000 sq foot unit.
JohnK3
(Pennsylvania)

Posts:967


04/11/2008 10:35 AM  
20 single family homes in Bucks County, PA (north of Philadelphia). 7 years old. Recently became self-managed. 30+ acres of green space including 4 ponds and 1 retention basin. $225 per household per quarter. Our biggest expense is landscaping upkeep, this year's contract being $12,500, which includes (for about 22 acres, the other 8 being left wild) clean-up, fertilizing, mulching for about 30 trees, and weekly cutting from April to November. Next up is fountain insertion/removal for the largest pond and electricity, figure $1,200 per annum. Liability/BOD-E&O insurance about $700. Street lights, road maintainance and snow removal are provided by the township.

Good news is that this year we'll save $6,000 in management fees which we hope to use to substantially augement our current $5,000 reserve fund and then, knock wood, if all goes well, drop dues 10-15% for 2009.

In the current real estate market, the Board (me being 1 of 3, and the first active Board we've had since incorporation)(hence the canning of the do-nothing management firm), we firmly believe that excellent care of our very attractive green areas (visitors often comment on how "open" and "spacious" the subdivision feels), coupled with good financial health, are valuable assets that shouldn't be scrimped on, so we don't plan on reducing dues much further. Thankfully, membership has no complaints (yet!).
BarbaraM9


Posts:0


04/11/2008 11:41 AM  
Dear JohnR4,

I am located in Warrenton, Virginia and we pay $100 quarterly ($33 per month). We don't have 35 acres of common gound, no pools, no tennis courts, no basketball courts, no recreation center, and no community activities (we tried to get people together but so many people dislike each other around here, that that didn't work out). I say you have a pretty good thing going there. We have 122 households, I'm guessing you have more since you dues are so low for all your HOA has to offer.

Our dues pay for lawn maintenance and care, some landscape maintenance, snow removal(which you probably don't use much), general maintenance, electricity for some common area street lamps, and asphalt repair of courts and curb painting, and management company fees. We used to have playgroud equipment but the older kids destroyed it and it was removed.

Maybe we should move where you are??!!

BarbaraM9


Posts:0


04/11/2008 11:46 AM  
DonnaS, You have a VILLA??!!
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Forums > Homeowner Association > HOA Discussions > Your Monthly dues..... how much do you pay??



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