What Are Homeowner Associations?
The real estate sector in Dubai has witnessed a significant boom in recent years, attracting numerous tenants and investors due to its safe environment and flourishing economy. As the city continues to grow, new buildings are being added to the skyline every day. With this rapid expansion comes the need for effective management and maintenance of these residential developments. This is where homeowners’ associations (HOAs) play a crucial role. If you are considering any kind of investment in the real estate sector, it is essential to learn more about the regulations and responsibilities of these associations.
The Jointly Owned Property Law, commonly known as the Strata Law, was introduced in 2007 and later supplemented with regulations in 2010 to address the ownership of common areas and establish Owner Associations (OAs) for their management. Homeowner associations are non-profit entities and separate legal bodies comprising all unit owners within a jointly owned property. They are responsible for overseeing the maintenance, monitoring, and administration of common areas. Each property owner automatically becomes a member of the OA upon purchasing a unit, necessitating payment of an annual service charge for the upkeep of shared spaces. The OA is governed by an elected board of owners who work voluntarily to improve the community.
Responsibilities of Homeowners Associations
The primary responsibility of homeowners associations is to maintain the quality of life and enhance the overall living experience for the residents within the community. They do that through
- The management, monitoring, and maintenance of common areas such as swimming pools, gyms, parks, parking areas, and other shared facilities.
- They ensure that these areas are well-maintained, clean, and in compliance with the required standards.
- They enforce statutory regulations, and community or building rules, and ensure the security of the community.
- They play an active role in facility and property management, handling administrative tasks, financial management, and operational aspects of the community.
- They manage finances, budgeting, collecting annual service charges from property owners,
- They allocate funds for necessary repairs, maintenance, and improvement projects. They also promote a sense of community and provide a platform for residents to voice their concerns, and suggestions, and actively participate in decision-making processes.
Role of the Real Estate Regulatory Agency (Rera)
Real Estate Regulatory Agency (RERA) is responsible for regulating and overseeing homeowners associations (HOAs) by managing relationships between various parties involved, including owners, landlords, developers, HOA management companies, and service providers. It ensures strict adherence to legal requirements, fosters transparency, and safeguards the interests of property owners and the community. RERA closely monitors the entire process to maintain a well-functioning real estate market.
In recent times, a noticeable trend has emerged wherein HOAs are opting to enlist the services of dedicated managers from licensed companies registered with RERA. There are several compelling reasons behind this trend:
- Skilful and Professional Expertise: The appointed managers possess the necessary skills and professionalism to effectively handle the day-to-day affairs of the association.
- Knowledge and Experience: With a wealth of knowledge and experience, these managers are equipped to navigate the complexities of managing an HOA and ensure smooth operations.
- Compliance and Streamlined Management: These managers ensure strict compliance with regulations and implement streamlined management practices, enhancing the efficiency of the association. Contribution to Success: By actively participating in the operations of the association, these managers significantly contribute to its overall success.
We can say that these associations bring several advantages to homeowners, residents, and landlords alike. Firstly, they prioritize maintenance and upkeep, preserving the value of the property. Additionally, they establish a unified approach to managing shared resources, leading to efficient fund allocation and timely project execution. The regulations and governance provided by HOAs contribute to a harmonious living environment and facilitate the resolution of any disputes or conflicts among residents.