55+ Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: I am under 55 years of age, could I live in a 55 and older community?

A: Each community has their own unique rules and enforcement for their 55+ age restrictions for residents. Across the board, the rule of being older than 55 years of age to reside in the communities is adhered to.

If a community was found to be in violation of not upholding the 55+ rule, they would be in danger of losing their status as a senior community.

Some communities may allow you to buy a home if you are under 55+, however in order to live in the community you will need to be 55 and over.

Some 55 and over communities may also allow you to purchase a home if you are younger than 55 and rent or lease the home to a 55+ renter until you are age-qualified to move in to the home.

Please verify this information for each community that you are interested in.

Q: Can my under 55 years old children or grandchildren live with me in a 55 and over community?

A: In most cases children and, or grandchildren under 55 years old cannot live in the home full-time. Although each 55+ community has its own restrictions and bylaws, all of them have a defined length of time that anyone under the age of 55 years old can visit in the home. This time period varies from 30 to 90 days per calendar year.

The exceptions to this rule, in some 55+ communities, is if the underage person is a qualified caregiver for the over 55 year old occupant – OR –  if the underage person is a spouse/partner age 45 years old or more.

Please verify this with each community that you are interested in.

What is the Difference Between Resident-Owned and Land-Lease 55+ Communities?

A: In resident-owned parks, as the name implies, you own home as well as the land underlying it (i.e. through fee simple, condominium, co-operative ownership or HOA membership). These type of communities have Homeowners Associations and monthly HOA fees. Homeowners Association fees may be reviewed or changed annually.

In land-leased parks, you own only the physical structure and not the underlying land. These communities will have a monthly lease, but usually no additional HOA fees. Leases are typically renewed annually.

Homes in resident-owned communities are typically higher priced than those located in land-leased parks, simply because of the additional purchase of the real property (land).

While many buyers prefer a resident-owned community, land-lease parks can be ideal for some buyers depending on their financial situation. The purchase price is normally much less. There is usually no additional monthly HOA fee to pay, and since there is no land ownership, there are no annual property taxes to pay.

Financing home purchases in land-leased parks can carry a higher cost due to the lack of real property collateralizing the loan.

Q: Do you have a list of Adult 55+ Land-Owned Mobile Home Parks in San Diego County?

A: Yes, please visit our web-page for resident owned 55 and over communities in San Diego County – click here. Owning a home in a resident owned communities may be in the following forms of ownership: fee simple, condominium, co-operative (co-op), and HOA membership. VA may not allow you to finance and purchase a land-owned home with co-op ownership (please verify this with your lender).

You may also watch short video tours of these land owned 55 and over communities in Southern California on Youtubeclick here.

Resident Owned 55+ Communities in San Diego

Q: Why is There No HOA Fee Listed?

A: In general, there are two types of 55+ parks: resident-owned and land lease parks.

In resident-owned parks, as the name implies, you own home as well as the land underlying it (i.e. through fee simple, condominium, co-operative ownership or HOA membership). These type of communities generally have Homeowners Associations and their monthly HOA fees are most clearly marked on the listings that you will see.

In land-leased parks, you own only the physical structure and not the underlying land. These communities will have a monthly lease, but usually no additional HOA fees. Because the lease is not technically an HOA fee, it is often not recorded on homes for sale listings under the HOA fee field, causing it to display $0. Other times, listing agents may insert the monthly land lease in the HOA field in an attempt to disclose the fee amount. When this occurs, you will typically see a fee that is higher than expected.

At the time of this writing, HOA fees in San Diego typically run anywhere from $100 to $400 per month.

Land leases are currently anywhere from $500-$2000 per month. Therefore, if you see an HOA fee advertised as either $0 or greater than $500, it is probable that you are looking at a land-leased 55+ park. Additionally, since you are not purchasing the land under the home, the asking price will be lower than what you would find in a resident-owned community.

It is not enough to have the cash nor financing to buy a home in a land leased senior park. You also have to qualify for approval to purchase based on income and terms from the specific community.

Q: Can I Take My Pets With Me to a 55+ Home?

A: Yes, pets are typically allowed in these 55 and over communities. However, each community has its own unique rules as they pertain to pets. All 55+ communities restrict the number of pets that residents may keep. There are also restrictions by the weight of the animal and certain dog breeds may be prohibited as well. A handful even prohibit the walking of dogs within the community’s boundaries.

Unfortunately, it is not easy to determine what a particular community’s pet acceptance policies are, and they may be modified frequently.

We always recommend that buyers call the respective HOA offices directly to learn of what their pet policies are. This is also a good opportunity to inquire about other restrictions, such as underage visitation lengths, parking regulations, home modifications, etc . . .

During these conversations with the HOA, one question often leads into another.  Most times, all of these questions can be answered on one quick telephone call and you get the answers directly from the source.

We will soon add a list of HOA contact numbers here.

Q: Can I transfer my property taxes from from the home I am selling to a new home I am buying in San Diego?

A: Yes, it is possible for you to transfer your low tax basis in your current home in California to a new home if you qualify under Proposition 60 or Proposition 90.

Proposition 60 allows transfers of base year values within the same county (intracounty).

Proposition 90 allows transfers from one county to another county in California (intercounty) and it is the discretion of each county to authorize such transfers.

What are the counties that have enacted ordinances to accept intercounty transfers?

As of June 5, 2015, the following eleven counties in California have an ordinance enabling the intercounty base year value transfer:

  1. Alameda County
  2. El Dorado County *
  3. Los Angeles County
  4. Orange County
  5. Riverside County
  6. San Bernardino County
  7. San Diego County
  8. San Mateo County
  9. Santa Clara County
  10. Tuolumne County
  11. Ventura County

Since the counties indicated above are subject to change, we recommend contacting the county to which you wish to move to verify eligibility.

* On August 30, 2016, the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors approved an extension of their ordinance, which will now sunset on October 1, 2021.

Read more information from Source BOE.ca.gov

Q: What are the advantages and disadvantages of living in a 55+ Adult Communities?

A: We wrote an article on the pros and cons of living in age-restricted communities – please read here.

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