Full Disclosure Please of Any and All Fees in Colorado Springs

By
Real Estate Agent with Monument, Black Forest, Falcon, Fountain homes

 

My buyers called me all excited about a home listed in a certain area they want that didn't have the usual HOA fees.  I read the listing sheet and sure enough no where on the listing is a monthly fee mentioned.  Now I'm very familiar with this area and I know the homeowners pay $142 a month which includes their water fee and access to a recreational center that is managed by the district. 

 

My first call is to the agent to find out if maybe they have won the lottery and managed to list a home exempt from the fees in this area.  Sure enough they claim there is no HOA, and no fee that they are aware of.  Now some buyer's agents might stop there and take the word of the listing agent.  But I go with my gut and my gut instinct told me to dig deeper. 

HOA fees

 

The next call was to the water management company to find out if indeed this home is exempt from the HOA.  They referred me to the HOA management company (not listed on MLS) After researching from the tax records as to which zone they were in we could therefore establish that they were outside the HOA parameter.  OK so does that mean they don't pay any fees attached to the land?  No it just means they are not inside the HOA boundary-back to the water district to clarify.

 

After clarifying that this property indeed is not part of an active HOA, I inquire as to any and all fees that go with the property for the community.  "Oh, there is the water and rec center fee that is governed by the district."  Now we are getting somewhere.  So let me understand, "A buyer purchasing this property has to pay the 142.00 per month fee required as a property owner in this district even though they are outside the HOA?"  "Yes."

 

 

Now this may not seem like a significant dollar amount to many and it does include the water bill for the property (with limitations on gallons used and penalties for going over), but some buyers are not prepared nor desire to have a set fixed additional charge on top of their monthly mortgage.  This is a non negotiable fee for this area and should be disclosed somewhere on the listing.  Whether it is put under HOA fees or in the Agent notes there is an obligation to DISCLOSE.  Taking the time to investigate potential pitfalls on the front end and to get clarification for buyers is just one more way to prevent misunderstandings that can lead to significant deal breakers later on.

 

 

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Topic:
Home Buying
Location:
Colorado El Paso County Falcon
Tags:
hoa fees
active hoa
home buying in colorado springs
homes for sale colorado springs

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Rainmaker
259,343
Bill Travis
Broker/Owner
Captain Bill Realty, LLC

$142 per month is significant

August 04, 2010 08:58 AM
Rainer
22,852
Dawn Bush
Exit Landmark Realty

What a great post!  I think too many times there are agents that just list a property and don't do the required research needed to disclose any and all information necessary for the new home owners.  You would think that the agent would have started by asking the current homeowner and moved on from there.  Obviously, it wasn't secret information since you were able to gather it by making a few phone calls!  Good job protecting yourself and your clients from this.  The other agent should thank you for doing their job and protecting them from a potential law suit as well.

August 04, 2010 09:08 AM
Rainmaker
93,009
Lorraine Sayer
Realtor ABR,CDPE,GRI - Colorado Springs,CO RE/MAX
Monument, Black Forest, Falcon, Fountain homes

Val: I agree. Many buyers are stretching themselves financially to just make the PITI. Another 142 month would push them over the edge to losing the home--and therein lies the potential for litigation.

 

Dawn: Thanks for your input.  I think this could blow up into a huge lawsuit for the listing agent but at least not with me or my buyers:)  One would hope that my inquiry would enlighten this agent to maybe pursue more information and take a look at the other listings on the same street that do mention this fee. 

August 04, 2010 10:16 AM
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Rainmaker
93,009

Lorraine Sayer

Realtor ABR,CDPE,GRI - Colorado Springs,CO RE/MAX
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