Reader’s Choice 2017: When you buy into a gated HOA community, you pay for private roads

It’s that time of the year. For the rest of the year, I’ll be reposting the 10 most read articles here on IAC.

Thanks for following, reading, and sharing. Special thanks to readers who have provided inspiration for blog topics, and for those who have been willing to share their personal HOA stories.

Public awareness is the first step on the road to justice for housing consumers.

Best wishes for a peaceful holiday season and happier, healthier neighborhoods in 2018.


SEPTEMBER 22, 2015

When you buy into a gated HOA community, you pay for private roads

By Deborah Goonan, Independent American Communities

If you choose to live in a gated community, then your HOA will be responsible for maintaining private roads. When the community is built, because the roads will be private, the County (or City) does not require them to be built to higher quality standards generally required by building code. That means the developer can make the roads more narrow and thinner than would be required by the local government.

Why is this the case?

Think about it. If the County or City will ultimately be responsible for maintenance and repair, they have a vested interest in making sure the roads are built to last. But if financial responsibility will fall to private homeowners, then the local government is less concerned. The thinking is, tax dollars won’t be used, therefore, allow developers to set the standard.

But what happens when the developer does not even complete the roads before selling houses? That has happened quite often all over the US, fallout from the deep recession. A few states, such as Florida, require developers to complete roads before selling the first lot. But many other states allow the builder to install temporary roads during construction, and then complete the project as construction nears completion.

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