Originally Posted by JordanL
This is why I flat refuse to live in anything but an actual house, urban living be damned.
I'm not giving control of my property to an HOA, period.
Actually, you have exactly the same vulnerability if you buy an "actual house" with an HOA. This has nothing to do with condo vs. single-family residence. Even in a development of SFR's, the developer holds the voting rights for the unsold houses.
The only upside of an HOA comes if you need to take the developer to court for construction defects; then you can split the legal costs among the HOA. If you're going up against the developer on your own, he can tie you up in court until you run out of money.