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HOA Inspections: 7 Questions Answered

Person holding a paper with a diagram of a house

Living in a homeowners’ association (HOA) usually has many perks, including a well-maintained community and strong property values. However, it takes proactive efforts to ensure homeowners are happy and the neighborhood is thriving. An HOA inspection helps a community’s board of directors stay on top of the community’s living standards and prevent future risks that could affect residents.

HOA inspections are essential to running a successful association. Read on to learn the answers to seven questions about HOA inspections.

1. What’s an HOA Inspection?

An HOA inspection is a thorough review of the community to assess current conditions, identify areas for improvement, and make sure homeowners are in compliance with HOA rules and regulations. The purpose of an HOA inspection is to catch discrepancies before they start to affect the quality and functionality of the association.

2. Who Performs an HOA Inspection?

Depending on your community’s size, needs, and overall budget, people who can perform formal inspections may include:

  • HOA board officers
  • The HOA community manager
  • A third-party HOA inspection service

While HOA board members can choose to conduct HOA inspections themselves, it’s common for associations to trust their community manager or a quality inspection service provider to perform the review.

Your community manager often has professional insight and a sound understanding of what to look for during a site inspection. They also know your community’s governing documents and grounds well, which can be a time-saving advantage.

Alternatively, a third-party HOA inspector also offers professional services with an unbiased perspective. An HOA inspector has an established inspection process that provides consistency, accuracy, and detailed results.

Read “The Community Partners & Professional Service Providers Every Board Needs” to learn what other service providers are crucial to your community.

3. What Do Inspectors Look for in an HOA Inspection?

HOA inspectors will focus on preventative maintenance, structural and functional repairs, and compliance with the community’s covenants, conditions, and restrictions (CC&Rs) in the following areas: 


The HOA exterior maintenance part of the inspection will check the outer elements of your community’s homes and structures, including:

  • Foundations
  • Walls
  • Roofs
  • Driveways
  • Stairs and railings
  • Gutters
  • Windows and doors

Inspecting the condition of these areas will help you identify damage and schedule maintenance or repairs when needed. Also, checking the individual exteriors of each home ensures community members are adhering to HOA rules and maintaining the neighborhood’s aesthetic.


Not all HOAs have interior areas that are included in an inspection. However, condominium developments or townhome communities may need to check:

  • Hallways
  • Ceilings
  • Floors
  • Attics
  • Vents and screens

When these components connect people’s homes, the HOA is typically responsible for maintaining them. Regularly checking each element means you can keep them in optimal shape as long as possible.

Shared Community Areas

Your community’s common areas are another significant focus during an HOA inspection. While every association is different, common HOA shared areas include:

  • Clubhouse
  • Parking lots
  • Swimming pools
  • Fitness centers
  • Community landscaping
  • Sidewalks and walking paths
  • Playgrounds and parks

The inspector will look for damage and potential risks, including poor lighting, broken equipment, uneven flooring, and a lack of HOA rules on signs. You’ll need to schedule repairs as soon as possible and be proactive about potential improvements that will enhance your community’s quality of living.


Although homeowners may be responsible for their own utilities in their homes, the HOA inspection should check utilities in common areas and throughout the community, including:

  • Electrical lines
  • Water lines
  • Gas lines
  • Sewage systems
  • Phone lines
  • HVAC systems

Inspector wearing a hard hat inspecting a door frame

4. What Are the HOA Inspection Requirements?

Requirements for HOA inspections will depend on state laws and the community’s governing documents. In many states, there’s no legal requirement to conduct regular inspections. Still, your HOA’s bylaws may specify when you must perform these inspections, what needs to be checked, and other requirements.

Understanding your governing documents is essential! Read “A Breakdown of HOA Governing Documents” to learn more.

5. Why Should My HOA Conduct Inspections?

Regular inspections are an effective way to maintain your community by spotting risks and maintenance needs. Getting ahead of these things will keep homeowners and their guests safe and your community in the best condition. Additionally, inspections can save your HOA money. By being proactive, you may avoid costly repairs or legal issues down the road.

Overall benefits of HOA inspections include:

  • Safer HOA grounds and amenities
  • Cost savings by preventing extensive repairs
  • Boosted curb appeal and property values
  • Reduced HOA violations
  • A more harmonious community

6. How Often Should an HOA Perform an Inspection?

While not all states have laws that make regular inspections mandatory, conducting a thorough inspection of your association at least every three years is crucial. Many HOAs perform checks as often as twice per year to ensure everything looks and operates as it should.  

If your state doesn’t have a requirement, some factors that may influence the frequency of your HOA inspections include:

  • The age of your community
  • Your region’s weather
  • Risk of natural disasters in your area
  • Planned HOA capital improvements or renovations

7. How Much Does an HOA Inspection Cost?

The cost of HOA inspections will depend on who is conducting them, the size of your community, the number of amenities offered, and how often you need to perform them. While working with a professional HOA inspector may be more costly, it can provide substantial savings in the long run. Discuss options with fellow board members or your HOA community manager to see what works for your association.

Top FAQs About HOA Violations

HOA inspections are invaluable for maintaining a safe and beautiful community. They also verify that homeowners are complying with HOA guidelines and can deter residents from committing violations. Learn more about HOA violations and how to handle them with our ebook, “Top Frequently Asked Questions About HOA Violations!”