Cloud Condominiums – Living without an HOA?

There is a new type of housing community, popping up all across the nation. This innovative style of living exists without any kind of an HOA board or internal government. In many ways, however, this new type of community reminds us all of the real benefits that an HOA offers.

Here are the basics. The new type of community is called cloud condominiums community. This new housing classification has already been approved in Orlando, San Diego, and Denver—and one imagines that it will make its way into other regions, as well.

What, exactly, constitutes a “cloud condominium” complex? The short answer is that it is, for all intents and purposes, just your basic condominium complex—minus any kind of HOA. The absence of the HOA stems from the fact that there is no common area in these cloud condos.

How it works, basically, is that there is no maintenance or repair work provided to homeowners. Each homeowner is responsible for the upkeep of his or her own unit. As such, there are, of course, no dues or HOA fees. The inhabitants of these communities are governed by basic CC&Rs, just like in many HOAs—though in this case, there is no HOA to enforce those covenants, conditions, and restrictions.

The “upshot” of this kind of community, such as it is, is that the units are supposedly small enough that upkeep is easy and affordable for the homeowner. Of course, there are also some significant drawbacks here. The biggest drawback goes back to those CC&Rs. If there is any infraction or violation, there is only one way for it to be settled: in a civil court.

Rather than address a building or landscaping violation via the HOA, then, you literally have to sue your neighbor in these cloud condo communities! That’s not the only downside here, either—because cloud condos are so new, homeowners will likely have to educate lending institutions as to exactly what this new kind of living really is.

None of this is meant to bash the cloud condo idea, however. The point is simply that there are some very real benefits offered by living within an HOA or community association—and when you see what communities look like without HOAs, it can really drive those benefits home!

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