Property Management Blog

Those who live in condos must be familiar with the term. In a condo community, HOA fees cover expenses related to maintaining the property.

You are now officially an HOA member if you buy a property governed by these rules. There is a chance your budget won't be able to cover HOA fees. You may even face foreclosure if you do not pay your HOA fees.

HOA liens, late fees, and foreclosure lawyers will be discussed.

HOA Fees - How To Avoid Them

How to avoid HOA fees. Fees can become so high that you cannot keep up with them. You have a few choices. Chapter 7 bankruptcy may be for you.

This chapter describes a way to discharge past dues. You may be able to prevent judicial foreclosure if you do this. Discharge under chapter 7 alleviates most debt and protects debtors from collection actions.

Who can apply?

Chapter 7 relief cannot be relied upon without any prior knowledge. You must qualify.

Filing Bankruptcy – Chapter 13

In Chapter 13, secured debts are repaid over 3-5 years. The collateral property can include your home and vehicle if you choose to stay at them.

With Chapter 13, you cannot be liable for post-petition HOA fees incurred before the transfer.

Lowered HOA fees

Finance crises are nothing new. We can sometimes not pay our fees due to life's unpredictable circumstances. Specifically, we're referring to HOA dues.

Here are some ways to reduce HOA fees:

  1. Identify high-cost areas in the budget

  2. Re-evaluate contracts with vendors (management, landscaping)

  3. Prepare for negotiations by requesting insurance quotes

  4. Defer nonessential repairs to your community

  5. Use the reserve fund to pay for essential projects if there is enough cash

What If You Don't Pay the HOA?

Your HOA will notify you if you have missed a payment and explain the consequences.

The HOA could take legal action against delinquent members if those preliminary actions fail. Here are the consequences of failing to pay HOA fees.

You Can Lose Privileges

It's perhaps your lightest consequence. The gym, pools, tennis courts, etc., might be off-limits to you.

Suing Is An Option

If you have accumulated homeowners association dues and fines, you may want to file a lawsuit. HOAs can deduct a portion of your salary to pay off outstanding amounts.

Foreclosures in HOAs

HOA foreclosures are similar to mortgage foreclosures - but what do they mean?

You may lose your home if you do not settle the agreed amount by a certain time, and the HOA has accumulated a certain amount to a certain extent.

Foreclosure proceedings must be notified to you 30 days in advance. Then you can start looking for foreclosure lawyers. Foreclosure and completing the entire process can take as long as a year.

Why Do You Need a Foreclosure Attorney?

In the case of either judicial or nonjudicial foreclosure, you might want to inquire about hiring a foreclosure attorney and whether it will be worth it.

If you need legal advice, you can use a lawyer referral service.

A trustworthy attorney-client relationship is built on experience handling HOA foreclosures. Your sensitive or confidential information is not compromised in this confidential relationship.

An agency can collect your bills

Similarly, if you don't pay your bills, your HOA may hire a collection agency to recover them - with constant calls and letters.

HOA Responsibilities

Homeowners have responsibilities in addition to collecting dues. Here are some.


The treasurer manages HOA finances. They check payments and pay repairpersons - and collect dues from congregation members. A budget should be created to pay bills, buy insurance premiums, and pay taxes.

Documents, records, meetings

Board members attend meetings, record communication, and keep records.

The board president schedules and determines the agenda for future meetings. Become familiar with each other. You can even vote and then announce the result. Aside from the president, you have the vice president and the board secretary.

Is HOA's Accountable?

Yes. Don't be afraid to file a claim if an HOA member isn't following the responsibilities we've discussed. Likewise, the HOA is held to its side of the agreement to respect and comply with dues and rules.

Your HOA might not be able to hand out fines and warnings as you'd like - but you can follow certain procedures that will affect a change. However, working alone won't accomplish this. Find a neighbor who feels the same way.

Why Do Homeowners Associations Exist?

Typical Homeowners Associations set forth rules and regulations specific to each home and must be followed by all neighbors.

HOA rules cannot override state laws. In new developments, condos, townhouses, and single-family neighborhoods. HOAs are typical of these. Talk to your real estate agent to learn how HOA fees differ.

  • Regulatory Rules

  • HOA rules imply:

  • Home/condo renovations

  • Lawn restrictions & holiday decorations

  • Maintenance requirements

  • Noisy policies

  • How many people can live in one unit

  • Park rules for residents

  • Pet policies and rules

  • Trash and recycling rules

  • How to rent your condo (Airbnb agreement)

HOA Fees: What To Expect?

Homeowners collect your dues each month. How much can you expect from these fees? In short, the fees differ by area, the resale value of the condo, and so on.

Therefore, condo fees can vary greatly. Newer and more expensive homes can cost as much as $1,000. Prices generally range from $200 to $400. A higher fee is charged for more amenities.

What Are HOA Fees For?

Let us remind you how you're saving those few hundred dollars here.

  • Repair & Maintenance

  • Trash removal

  • Electric system and lightning

  • Heating system

  • Sanitation system

  • Pest control

  • Elevator system

  • Roof repairs

  • Hallway paint, carpeting

  • Pipe replacement

  • Gym equipment, swimming pool

  • Internet and cable systems

  • Special assessments

  • Reserve Fund

This fund covers the cost of emergency repairs in your complex.

Check the reserve fund if you're moving to a condo and haven't paid HOA fees yet. The reserve status could reduce HOA fees for a time.


Homeowners' insurance covers wear and tear and unforeseen damage. In a natural disaster, for example, it can help reduce costs.


Staff responsible for maintaining common areas are part of the janitorial staff. Payroll is a part of the HOA fees you pay.

Managing Property

If the HOA wishes to enforce the CC&Rs, it can hire a property manager to help. Talk to the board about lowering HOA fees if you're looking to cut them.

Utility Payments

HOA fees cover utility payments such as heating, water, air conditioning, and electricity for common areas of the complex. It depends on how your community is set up, though. Sometimes, the utility fees cover expenses for individual units, too.

Final Thoughts

There may be a way to avoid legal action and stop paying the dues permanently if you're looking to avoid HOA fees.

You have two options: Chapter 7 or Chapter 13, and your case must meet certain eligibility criteria. Additionally, you can petition your HOA if it fails to fulfil its obligations.

If you’d like to talk more about property management, or you need help with Everest Property Management, please contact us at Everest Realty.

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