The following is a guest post by JR Orlando. If you are seeking expert HOA accounting advice and like using a company that is easy to work with… then you have just found the pot of gold under the rainbow! Read this post and then learn more at http://www.orlando-hoa.com/ .
Condo Ownership 101: What do your dues cover?
Posted by Orlando HOA Services
This is my answer to the burning question of “Where does my money go?”—the short answer.
Your HOA is required to pay for two kinds of expenses: Operating and Reserve. Your operating expenses cover such things as maintenance and repair, utilities, landscaping, janitorial, HOA Insurance and the general upkeep of all common area items. Here’s where I’m going to insert my own personal proviso. HOA owners sometimes have a tendency that condo ownership is just like renting: everything is the HOA’s responsibility. It’s not. There are elements of your property that you own, and you are responsible for. Further, if you do not maintain your own condo (say, a water pipe that runs into your unit breaks) and causes damage to another unit, you are responsible for the damage to your unit and the other unit damaged by your water pipe. The HOA is not your Fairly Godmother.
Your HOA is also required to keep enough money in reserves for future component replacement. Do you have a clubhouse? That is part of the common area and like all structures has an expiration date. Siding, roofing, furniture, all needs to be replaced at some time. Do you have a parking lot? Asphalt has a limited life and needs to be replaced. So a percentage of your assessments go to fund your reserves.
Current Davis Stirling law requires the HOA to publish a 30-year percent funded report for your reserves. It tells you clearly where you are well-funded and where you are weak. A strong HOA is 73% funded. Below 35% is weak, and indicates a good possibility that you will need a special assessment in the near future. Before you decide this does not concern you as you are likely to sell before that time, remember that this document is also furnished to your prospective buyers and can affect the price of your house.
Do you need an expert? Orlando HOA Services can help your HOA stay fiscally healthy through sound financial management. Check out our webpage at www.Orlando-HOA.com.
As an HOA insurance specialist… here’s where I add my own proviso. HOA owners frequently think that because Monthly Dues Payments pay for HOA insurance that everything that could be damaged or lost in a fire or due to water damage will be covered by the HOA policy. Think again! Your CCRs dictate what the HOA insurance should cover. Some CCRs limit HOA insurance coverage to just the Bare (perimeter) Walls. The unit owner is then responsible to insure all interior walls, cabinets, counter tops, flooring, etc. Other CCRs insure the interior walls, cabinets, counter tops “As Originally Constructed”, but do not insure the value of Upgrades such as granite counter tops, custom cabinets or hardwood floors so the unit owner’s personal policy needs to cover the value of the upgrades. Suggestion: Read your CCR’s Insurance Section. Ask the HOA insurance agent to interpret what is covered or not covered on the inside of your home. Use your personal policy to insure whatever the HOA policy does not cover. For more about covering the inside of your home, please read http://dandavisins.com/condo-unit-owner-h06