The deterioration of maintenance standards in some housing complexes has necessitated the need to look into Home Owners Associations and their importance and relevance to the upkeep and management.
Two questions to ask would be, does the housing complex have a Home Owners Association and if so, what is hindering the effectiveness of these associations?
A Home Owners Association is an association formed by owners of a building, tenement or block of flats with the common purpose of addressing issues of shared concern for example common repairs, maintenance and bill servicing. The Association runs under a constitution which has its own covenants, conditions and restrictions. For the common interest to apply all property owners should be members of the association and anyone who buys into the complex or neighbourhood automatically becomes a member of the association with an appointed committee to run directly mange affairs. The Association is a non- profit making organisation and its constitution adopts a set of bye-laws clearly describing the Association’s rights and responsibilities. It works for the welfare of the residents while also protecting the owners’ interests.
The deterioration of infrastructure and security in housing complexes is normally due to the lack of a committed and united Association. The Associations funding comes from the payment of levies by the residents and non-payment of levies mainly weakens the effectiveness of these Associations. A functional Association will keep the housing complex well maintained and managed thereby maintaining the capital value of individual properties and attracting good prospective buyers as well as tenants.
As an owner /resident in a complex or block of flats, one has shared responsibility to maintain and repair the common areas of the property. It is, however, a strenuous and time consuming task to organize the repairs and maintenance of these areas whilst at the same time managing payment of levies due. An association is needed to plan such repairs and maintenance ahead of time and to ensure they are conducted correctly and timeously. Its entire purpose is to maintain a higher quality of life for the tenants and owners by maintaining the capital value of the flat or building.