Homeowners Association (or HOA) fees are an unavoidable fact of life for a significant number of property investors in Orlando. These fees usually affect owners in residential buildings that comprise multiple housing units where a homeowners association is in place to look after the common interests of the building's residents.
These include condos, or properties that are linked to a planned
development such as a gated community or regular subdivision, though they can sometimes also apply to stand-alone residences such as single family
The primary purpose of a homeowners association is to make sure that the overall value of the communal property
is maintained, if not enhanced. As a resident within that
community you are legally obligated to be a standing member of the
homeowners association and also to pay the monthly fees charged to all members.
HOA fees and charges in Orlando will vary according to each property and where it's located, so it's important to understand what your obligations are and the fees that you're accountable for.
Your HOA obligations as a homeowner
As an investor in an Orlando property, you will be obliged
to pay HOA fees just like any other homeowner, even if you don't actually intend to set foot on the property yourself. Most homeowners associations will have a set fee structure in place that will be applied to you.
Members will pay regular monthly
or annual fees of a pre-agreed amount. Most HOAs will appoint a board, which, depending on the size of the building, will comprise some or all of the residents. Through a vote, they will normally agree a set amount that members pay. This will be calculated according to the overall cost of maintaining the property which will then be divided equally between the individual owners in the building.
Sometimes the HOA will also ask members to contribute last-minute fees,
which are required when reserve funds are empty or insufficient to meet
the cost of an emergency repair or purchase for the property. The association might also decide to charge for an extra assessment to cover the expenses. Typical expenses include a new elevator or major repair to the roof or outer wall of the building.
HOA fees in Orlando
HOA fees in Orlando will typically range between
$200 and $400 per month. The more upmarket the property and the
greater its overall value, the higher
the fees are likely to be. Properties that have extensive grounds that require maintaining, or that have specific amenities (such as a pool or tennis court) will also usually require a higher contribution from each member.
Rest assured that your fee obligations as an HOA member will be laid out clearly in the regulations and by-laws. These will normally be made available to prospective buyers so make sure to ask for a copy (and to go through it in scrupulous detail)
before you sign any purchase agreement.
In order to remain in good standing with your fellow HOA members, it's up you to ensure all fees are paid on time. To be sure, homeowners associations in Orlando have the authority to administer charges or fines to homeowners who fail to pay their fees in a timely fashion, or who violate the other regulations stipulated in their HOA membership agreement. They also have the power to foreclose even if you are up to date on your mortgage payments.