Some possible items include:
- Maintenance costs for common areas (community pools, community center, etc.)
- Insurance related to the common areas & association
- Security costs for the association (not the individual homes)
- Payroll for any HOA employees
- Fees paid to an outside property management company
- Entry gate & security guards
- Basic cable fees
- Costs of running the association, professional fees, bookkeeping, etc.
Read the association documents to be clear about what is covered. It is also important to review a copy of the HOA budget so you can see how your HOA fee money is being spent.
When you apply for a mortgage, the HOA fee is included in the calculation of your monthly housing costs, along with your mortgage payment and real estate taxes. This affects your qualification for your mortgage.