If you are a condo owner, you will have noticed the new buzzwords that are bandied about these days: community associations, condominium associations and, more recently, condo conversion. You may have pondered, at some point, about the difference between a condo association and HOA. Well, here we go! We’ll take a look at the similarities and differences between these two communities, as well as explore the reasons why people choose one over the other.

Common Areas

Condo association and HOA both cover common areas of a community. Common areas include outdoor space, outdoor recreational areas, parks and plazas. Most condominium associations have certain fees in place for these activities. In a condo association, all fees collected are placed in a special community account and used to cover the expenses related to the activities. When you are buying or selling a unit in a condo association, you can be sure that your money is being used for the purposes you had in mind.

A common community also provides a set of common amenities. These amenities may include outdoor pools, tennis courts, jogging tracks, exercise classes, bike shares and more. These common amenities cost the condo owner maintenance fees. Most HOA’s do not charge any fees for these common items.

Swimming pool, photo taken in Murcia, Spain

What Kind of Structure Do You Prefer?

One of the most important factors when comparing what is the difference between condo associations and homeowners associations is to determine what type of structure the two types have. In a condo association, each unit owner has their own private entrance and has the right to use the communal areas. With HOA’s, you will find common areas along with shared entryways to the common areas, which makes them a lot less private and a lot more open.

You Could Save Money in a Condo Association

With a condo association, you pay to belong. This membership fee covers many costs, including security services, maintenance, property assessments and much more. In a common community, many of these fees are included in the sale price of your unit. So what is the difference between a condo association and HOA? The main difference is that in a condo association, all fees collected are added to the common funds, leaving you with more money to spend on other things.

Conclusion

So, what is the difference between condo associations and condominium associations? In essence, it is the financial investment that you make when you buy into a common property and that investment is tax free. However, in order to stay in a condo association, there is usually a monthly or annual fee that comes with owning the unit. If you are looking for a way to own a private piece of property or are looking for condos for sale in Greenville SC, this may be an option for you, but when comparing what is the difference between condo associations and condominium associations, you need to make sure that you are getting the most for your money and the monthly or annual fee is not going to eat too much of your monthly budget.