Homeowners associations, often referred to as HOAs, are organizational units that manage the upkeep of common property in communities and regulate how individual members may use and maintain their properties. For some, HOAs take the burden of maintenance off their shoulders for the cost of membership. Others find HOA regulations to be cumbersome and restrictive.

The reach of HOAs can vary throughout communities, and this post does not offer any legal advice regarding what specific HOAs can and cannot do. Individuals with specific HOA questions are encouraged to contact their trusted Detroit-based HOA law attorneys for individualized guidance.

Common HOA provisions

Many HOA provisions concern how property owners manage the exterior upkeep of their homes. For example, an HOA could stipulate that only certain paint colors may be used for homes or that gardens may not be planted in members’ yards. Other common HOA provisions can include:

  • The height and type of fences;
  • The size and location of mailboxes;
  • The presence of sheds on properties; and
  • The building of recreational structures for kids.

The reach of HOAs can go farther. Some may prohibit home-based businesses of may limit the types, number, and sizes of pets that members can own.

The benefits of HOAs

Though HOA provisions can be restrictive, they ensure that members will hold each other to the same expectations to protect their shared interests and property values. Many communities exist that do not utilize the regulations of HOAs, and before buying into an HOA community an individual should fully research what provisions they will be held to if they select to join one. An HOA can be a financial commitment and may carry with it penalties for those who fail to comply with its directives.