Living in a neighborhood where there is a Homeowners Association (HOA) is a different experience from when you live in one without. You will find out that there are many rules that dictate what you can do to your own home and yard. The purpose of HOA’s is to keep a neighborhood uniform and counteract influences that can make a neighborhood less appealing, but sometimes they do more than that. In some cases, HOA’s have gone as far as putting the homes of those not paying their dues in time into foreclosure, selling it at a fraction of the cost. This is why it is important for you to do the research before buying a home in a neighborhood where there is an HOA. You can see if there have been a lot of foreclosures in the neighborhood in the past. You can also discreetly inquire of those living in the neighborhood as to what their feelings are. Does the HOA overreach its authority? Are they strictly enforcing their bylaws, and are the bylaws unreasonable? In the end, you will need to make an informed decision.