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Old 09-13-2018, 09:39 AM   #1
DznyGirl
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Default Larger vs smaller associations

Looking at different areas to purchase a second home, with an eye towards eventual retirement. Hubby wants an association, with little outside maintenance for him. Any opinions on larger vs smaller communities? Have visited, and really liked, SDS, but what about the other end of the spectrum like Mallard Cove?

Appreciate any thought and opinions you may have!

Last edited by DznyGirl; 09-13-2018 at 09:40 AM. Reason: Change wording
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Old 09-13-2018, 09:47 AM   #2
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Looking at different areas to purchase a second home, with an eye towards eventual retirement. Hubby wants an association, with little outside maintenance for him. Any opinions on larger vs smaller communities? Have visited, and really liked, SDS, but what about the other end of the spectrum like Mallard Cove?

Appreciate any thought and opinions you may have!
SDS and LB have a lot of advantages, just note that most but not all sub HOA's inside SDS and LB include landscape and snow removal in their HOA also there are stand alone homes that do not have a sub HOA in both so you would be responsible to maintain your landscape and snow removal on your property
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Old 09-13-2018, 10:09 AM   #3
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I prefer the smaller the better but that's a personal preference.
I've only been involved with two small ones. My first was 15 homes so the association was only for the waterfront lot. Each home owner took care of their own personal property. We would rotate officials in charge every 2 years.
The one I'm in now is only 4 homes. No one is really in charge. We call it the "procrastination association". We are all over 60 and we talk about what we want to do every year but not much gets done unless I do it. I'm actually the youngest and the newest member so I take upon myself to improve the waterfront area a little every year, which I don't mind at all since I use it the most.
It's very laid back, which I like.
The bigger the associations, the bigger the fees and more members means more people that have to try and get along.
The smaller associations are more hands on and require more individual work.

Last edited by Biggd; 09-13-2018 at 12:23 PM.
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Old 09-13-2018, 10:37 AM   #4
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We love SDS. Although it is big its broken down into many villages which still make it feel quaint. Also the bigger association means better buying power when negotiating landscaping, snow removal etc. Its a big piece of business for those trying to get it so they pay attention to cost and accuracy. Like your husband I just want to show up and see all my chores have been done!
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Old 09-13-2018, 11:48 AM   #5
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We love SDS. Although it is big its broken down into many villages which still make it feel quaint. Also the bigger association means better buying power when negotiating landscaping, snow removal etc. Its a big piece of business for those trying to get it so they pay attention to cost and accuracy. Like your husband I just want to show up and see all my chores have been done!

Where is Mallard Cove?



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Old 09-13-2018, 12:18 PM   #6
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Where is Mallard Cove?



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Off Elm Street, around the corner from SDS. Leaving SDS make a left on Parade Road and then a left on Elm (first light) it will be on the right before you get to the Laconia Golf Club. Note it is not on Winni, it is on Opeeche
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Old 09-13-2018, 12:42 PM   #7
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Default HOA Fees

what are some of the HOA fees for these associations?
I'm thinking of SDS, Mallard Cove, Grouse Point, Jonathans Landing, Windwood Harbor.
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Old 09-13-2018, 12:50 PM   #8
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what are some of the HOA fees for these associations?
I'm thinking of SDS, Mallard Cove, Grouse Point, Jonathans Landing, Windwood Harbor.
SDS the primary HOA is 1k per year to take care of the common areas but you sub HOA fees vary by the size associate, so the Heights will be different from the Highlands, Bay Hills, Captains Walk, Daw, Colonial, Ferncroft, Golf Club, Gabels ect.......
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Old 09-13-2018, 01:05 PM   #9
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I'm in the Highlands and its $350...
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Old 09-13-2018, 01:32 PM   #10
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Mallard Cove currently lists an HOA fee of $290/month
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Old 09-13-2018, 01:45 PM   #11
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SDS the primary HOA is 1k per year to take care of the common areas but you sub HOA fees vary by the size associate, so the Heights will be different from the Highlands, Bay Hills, Captains Walk, Daw, Colonial, Ferncroft, Golf Club, Gabels ect.......
Joey2665 is correct...there are two levels of association in SD. SDRA is the association that manages the common infrastructure (main roads, greenbelt, beach, gate etc...) The ~$1K is the SDRA fee. The community is divided into villages and single family homes. The villages maintain their common property...roads, pools (where applicable), beach (where applicable). In addition, some costs are included in the village fee and some are not. Some villages include trash pickup in their fee (such as Gables and Captains Walk), other do not. In addition, some are really condominium associations and units do not include property (such as Gables, Daw Village etc...). Captain's Walk is a group of homes with individual lots and common roads.

So, it is a bit complex...the advantage of a large association wrapped around smaller associations is scale and amenities. A large association can amortize costs across a broader group...SD and LB have volunteer boards and $1k (SDRA) is extremely reasonable on a comparable basis. A small association can pay attention to individual needs without having to deal with the broad population...ex painting, residing, trash, governance etc...

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Old 09-14-2018, 07:52 AM   #12
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What is the protocol on offsetting costs for weekends/weeks you're not there. Do associations allow you to rent your property or is that not allowed?
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Old 09-14-2018, 08:24 AM   #13
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What is the protocol on offsetting costs for weekends/weeks you're not there. Do associations allow you to rent your property or is that not allowed?


You are allowed to rent in most if not all the villages in SDS and LB but some have restrictions on the amount of time. Some villages prefer long term rentals as opposed to short term. Make sure when you are looking at homes/condos that you read the village bylaws throughly



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Old 09-14-2018, 08:28 AM   #14
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Default Wikdwood Village

On Winnisquam. Full amenities including backyard pond, 200 ft sandy beach, mooring field, launch ramp, natural gas utility etc. About 120 units with $300 @ month HOA fees.

Five minutes to Lakeport Landing, Irwin Marine. I have a boat on both winnis. Best of both worlds!
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Old 09-14-2018, 08:40 AM   #15
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What is the protocol on offsetting costs for weekends/weeks you're not there. Do associations allow you to rent your property or is that not allowed?
SD does allow rentals...note that each of the villages have their own rules about rentals also, but generally it is allowed.
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Old 09-14-2018, 01:25 PM   #16
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Association or not mostly comes down to money. An association allows more amenities/access at a lower cost. For some aspects--recreation, activities--associations can be great. For some others--privacy, freedom--associations can be horrible.

If it's about maintaining the property, it would be worthwhile to research the price of landscapers, etc. vs. HOA fees and keep that consideration in the mix. One of the condo associations we looked at had fees in the low 400's, which was almost twice as much as what it would cost to maintain the property.

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Old 09-14-2018, 10:09 PM   #17
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Default HOA's

If Moultonborough isn't too far for you, and Long Island might be in your select range, we have both Harbourside (16 single family homes on 60+ acres that you don't have to mow and your own boat slip) and Land's End (also single family homes or alternatively a condo life with your own boat slip) and Jonathan's Landing (More of a condo set-up again with your own boat slip).

I can relate about not removing snow or mowing your onw lawn after a certain age. Any of these offer this. The only fee I know of is Jonathan's landing which runs at $775 a month. I have no idea about Harbourside or Land's End....

Good luck and what a great choice getting a second home up here. I promise you won't take a day up here for granted. We dreamed of being here for 18 years and finally made it back. I wish you the same happiness.
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Old 09-15-2018, 04:42 PM   #18
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Thanks for the replies and information so far. We are hoping to narrow down to a couple of choice areas and be ready to pounce when the right thing comes along.

Cal-to-N: Moultonborough is pushing it as far as distance, although the low tax rate is definitely attractive. I really haven't looked into any associations there yet, but I will research the ones you mentioned...thank you!

thinkxingu: That's one of the issues we keep going back and forth on...condo vs. private ownership. For less than some of the condo fees we are seeing, we could certainly hire landscaping/plowing help. But we do also like some of the amenities that come with the associations.

BroadHopper: We seriously looked at a unit for sale in Wildwood Village this past spring. I really liked the association and the quiet area, although the unit itself needed some work. My concern was that it backed up to an area that has a not-so-nice reputation with frequent police presence. Any insight you can offer about that? I did like that it was a smaller association and the beach area seemed very nice!
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Old 09-15-2018, 04:59 PM   #19
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One more thing I'll add about associations: there is a built-in set of friends, etc. I mention this because we've discovered that it's nice NOT to have to invite guests/entertain people. When we arrive at camp, the party's already there!

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Old 09-17-2018, 09:03 AM   #20
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BroadHopper: We seriously looked at a unit for sale in Wildwood Village this past spring. I really liked the association and the quiet area, although the unit itself needed some work. My concern was that it backed up to an area that has a not-so-nice reputation with frequent police presence. Any insight you can offer about that? I did like that it was a smaller association and the beach area seemed very nice!
You did your homework. There is a HUD housing development on Blueberry Lane a 'block' away. Typical of may such 'projects' there are police presence every day. The village as we call ourselves have enough year round residence to deter theft and or vandalism. Police in the HOA itself is very rare. There are a few calls to police for 'unusual activity' within the village. And found later the occasional delivery guy or contractor doing legitimate work. I can only remember one break in the past decade I've been here. Only one suspicion of young perps looking into car windows. Not any more than any other HOA on the lake.
The only time we have an occasional problem is the use of the beach. Unauthorized people are asked to leave. Most just leave. If one don't leave the police are there in minutes! I am not aware of any escalated issue.

Units do need work. Mine been occupied by the original owners since 1979. It was outdated. Got a very reasonable price in 2005, and updated the unit. It is very nice. The HOA is currently replacing exterior clapboards. Original construction did not have a moisture barrier under the sidings. You will notice this have been taking care of.

What can be said about the unit owners, many of them are here for the long haul. And retiring to enjoy the area. It's not a 55+ community, it just became that way.
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