Role of the HOA in the purchase of your Downtown San Diego Condo

July 6th, 2015

“When buying a Downtown San Diego condo, we are all seduced by the decor, the ambiance, the view, and other visual effects, when we should really be checking something else that is not visual!

The Home Owners Association (HOA) often plays a very nondescript part in the whole process of choosing a condo – especially for first-time condo buyers. However, the HOA can play a very large part in using up your finances if you hit an unlucky situation after moving in.

In order to avoid a surprise, ask a few pertinent questions about the HOA. One of the important factors would be ‘who is running the show?’ In a very small condo complex it may be run by residents, but a professional management company is preferable, especially in a condo of any size.

Professional management companies do charge for their services, but they can often save this fee by obtaining lower quotes for repairs, because they will use the same company many times. There is also less chance of the company using their influence on resident votes, so they may be construed as more fair. Finally, it is a business to them, and it the HOA will be run as such, instead of as a part-time rush before each meeting is due!

Always ask to see the rules of the HOA, the financial report, the by-laws and the minutes of the last several meetings. The conditions, covenants and restrictions (CC&Rs) will affect your lifestyle, so make sure they ‘fit in’ with it.

The financial report will tell you if there are any big increases in the fees coming up, or if there are any ’emergency’ fees due soon. This raises the important question, what will happen if there is a big emergency? How is it paid and how much money is in the HOA kitty?

The maintenance reserves will be important; there will hopefully be approximately one third of the gross annual fees charged to all residents in the reserves.

Another aspect that the HOA manages is the percentage of rental units allowable. Under 20% is passable, but any more and the re-sale of the condos becomes risky. Renters often do not have the same respect for property or neighbors, so they decrease desireability.Also mortgage companies are aware of this and are reluctant to give out mortgages to high-rental complexes.

Once you have ironed out all these questions, you can consider whether you would like to get a professional inspection done. These inspections include the common areas as well as the condo you are interested in. Once all these precautions are in place, you will feel more secure to go ahead and make an offer.

The Latest Headlines

Breeza San Diego Market Updates

Breeza – Market Updates Breeza Condos are in a prime location, well situated in the heart of Little Italy. April 2015 Breeza Market Update View the Breeza Market Update February 2015 Breeza......

read more

Pinnacle San Diego Market Updates

Pinnacle – Market Updates The Pinnacle Museum Tower is an 182-unit, 35-story luxury condominium development located at 550 Front Street in the Marina District. Floor plans are available in one-bedrooms with 669......

read more

Treo San Diego Market Updates

Treo – Market Updates Treo, bounded by Kettner Boulevard and A, B and India streets, is a 24 story, 326 residence development found in the Columbia District. Built as mixed use, Treo’s......

read more

Fahrenheit San Diego Market Updates

Fahrenheit – Market Updates Perched artistically at the corner of Tenth Avenue and Island Avenue, Fahrenheit is more than a place to live, it has been constructed as an architectural experience. Only......

read more

City Walk San Diego Market Updates

City Walk – Market Updates City Walk stands 5-stories tall and includes 109 town homes, single-level units and lofts on the block bounded by State, G, Union and Market Streets. The complex......

read more

Downtown San Diego March 2013 Events

March 1-3 Spring Home and Garden Show Held at the Del Mar Fairgrounds, San Diego’s Spring Home/Garden Show gives you the opportunity to meet and question the 20 Garden Masters and explore......

read more

Union Square San Diego Market Updates

Union Square – Market Updates In the East Village between Broadway Avenue, C Street and 14th and 15th Avenues is Union Square, a mixed-use development featuring 262 condominiums located in three buildings.......

read more

Common Risks Involved with Downtown San Diego Real Estate Investing

While a good many millionaires will agree that their fortunes were made in real estate, the honest ones will also tell you that they’ve probably lost a few fortunes in real estate......

read more

Downtown San Diego January 2014 Events

Polar Bear Plunge Jan. 1 The Annual LJCSC Polar Bear Plunge and Chili + Potluck. A great way for LJCSC Members to ‘SPLASH’ into the New Year! 10am. Kelogg Park: La Jolla......

read more

Get Listings and Articles Delivered Straight to your inbox