Re: Dues structure
From: David Mandel (
Date: Sun, 3 Oct 1999 23:40:40 -0600 (MDT)
Our practice, which I believed to be standard for most, is to divide expenses
into two categories, those more directly related to unit size (reserves for
repainting, reroofing, for example) and those not so much related (maintenance
of common facilities). The former are assessed proportionately to size, the
latter the same for each unit. The result is that the owner of a unit twice as
big as another will be assessed more, but less than twice as much. There is
still some arbitrariness, as some expenditure categories are borderline and
could go either way. Nor does it take into account number of people living in
two units of equal size: a larger household uses common facilities more and
pays less per person. We decided to leave this alone, however, after
considering a proposal to add ability to pay as a third dimension. I know that
at least one community does this, but we decided that the complications were
not worth it, particularly because in most instances, a larger household living
in a smaller unit would tend to be less affluent and is in fact paying less per
person than a smaller household, as explained above.
    We do have a separately funded line item on the budget for creating and
replenishing a kitty for capital expenditures (new, expensive stuff) and went
out of our way to link this one element to income. People declare their place
on a scale of $2 to $20 per month according to a combination of ability to pay
and unit size. It is a meaningful gesture to the fact that we have a wide range
of income levels and want to keep it that way.

David Mandel, Southside Park, Sacramento

brian wrote:

> Dear folks,
> Our community is preparing our annual budget.  To date, we have divided the
> annual budget based exclusively on the square footage of each residence.
>  For example, if I have 1 person in my 1,000 sf home, I pay exactly the HOA
> (Homeowner's Association) dues as someone with 3 people in an identical
> 1000 sf home.  Or if I have 1 person in my 1,500 sf home, I pay double what
> 2 people would pay living in a 750 sf home.
> I should add that all our utilities, HOA and community fees are run through
> this system
> I am an accountant and think our fees should be split based on a couple of
> factors namely square footage and number of people.
> I am wondering, how do other communities divide dues?
> Brian Setzler
> Trillium Hollow
> Portland, Oregon

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