Welcome to San Diego Blog | July 4, 2011

Monthly Condo Dues for HOA

Every condo building in Downtown San Diego has a home owners association (HOA) and property management company.  Although some buildings are self managed, the overall responsibility of the HOA management is to run the the business component of the condo project.

What do I get for my monthly home owners dues?

When you buy into a condo project, you are buying 1 fraction of the private corporation that is such HOA.  For example, if you buy into a building like Parkloft with 120 units and you purchase one condo, then you are 1/120 owner of that private HOA corporation.

The business component of a HOA includes:

  • collecting monthly HOA dues – considered income for the association
  • paying bills &  expenses which include: water, gas, electric, security, janitorial, engineering, landscape maintenance, plumbers, HVAC maintenance and repair, window washing, painters, contractors, elevator service companies, concierge service, and the HOA management company if the property is not self managed
  • scheduling for maintenance of the building systems (heating, AC, elevators, fans for underground parking garage the circulates fresh air, etc..) and amenities, move-ins & move-outs, window cleaning and more.
  • handling emergencies in buildings like floods, elevator failure, garage door failure, trash shoot failure and the many other things that can go wrong.
  • enforcing the rules and regulations of the Conditions, Covenants and Restrictions (CC&R’s) which may include collecting deposits for amenity room use, or fines for breaking rules.
  • Keeping a budget and making sure the home owners board makes decisions on behalf of the homeowners according to the bilaws.

How much do HOA dues cost per month?

Monthly HOA dues in buildings Downtown San Diego range from as low as the mid $300/month range for the more economical buildings up to the $1500/month range for full service luxury buildings like the Metropolitain atop the Omni Hotel.

Some people come to town and comment on how expensive the monthly dues are, yet others that come from other metropolitain cities are surpised at how little they monthly dues are in San Diego.  Regardless of where you stand, the important component is that you understand what you get for the monthly dues paid and the level of maintenance of your association.

I often compare homes to automobiles when it comes to HOA dues and maintenance.  When you buy a new car, the manufacturer has a service schedule that spells out after the first 1000 miles you get an oil change, change the transmission fluids, etc…and after 5000 miles, another oil change, top off fluids, do a 20 point systems check, etc….10,000 miles, 20,000 miles and on…

The same is true for homes and all of the functioning components of a condo building…HVAC, heat pumps, water heaters, boilers, hot water circulators, elevators, pool pumps & filters, garage gates and more.  All of these components have a service schedule and a well run HOA with a building engineer will stick to the recommended service schedule to keep these items in good working condition. 

In other words, your property is well maintained and generally in excellent condition inside and outside all of the common areas.  You would be amazed at all of the deferred maintenance that most people let go on single family homes.  If you compare the costs of ownership and monthly expenses at a condo vs a single family residence, you would be surprised that they really line up quite similarly.

  Single Family Home Condo HOA Dues
water & sewer  $                     87.00                included
trash  $                     53.00                included
gas  $                     23.00                included
electric  $                     79.00  $                45.00
pool & Jacuzi  $                   150.00                included
Landscaping  $                   140.00                included
insurance  $                     59.00  $                25.00
fitness membership  $                     40.00                included
saving for maintenance  $                   150.00                included
HOA dues    $              750.00
Total  $                   781.00  $              820.00

I don’t know about you, but I would much rather pay somebody about $40/month to take care of my property and maintenance than have to manage all of the different providers myself.  Not to mention the level of security of a condo building…if you had the security service in on your single family home, it is actually less to own a condo!

For more information about Home Owner’s Associations, give us a call: 619-309-8011

Written by: chad

Categories: Buyers, Luxury San Diego Condos, Real Estate Investment, San Diego Real Estate

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