Homeowners Associations, or HOA, for short, are everywhere in the United States. In New Jersey alone, nearly 2 million people live in HOA communities. Your neighborhood’s HOA can either be a good thing or a bad thing, and much of that depends on your viewpoint. HOAs are generally intended to improve the security, aesthetics, and overall smooth operation of a community.

However, living within the jurisdiction of a homeowners association can also mean paying additional fees that may not have been expected, as well as conforming to regulations and bylaws. These may not be a big deal, depending on the circumstances. If you’re considering the purchase of a property that includes membership in a homeowners association, it may be a good idea to try to do a little bit of scouting before you sign the deal. Do your future neighbors like the HOA? Can you get a peek at the bylaws ahead of time?

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