HOA dues don’t make any sense to me

Before we moved here and bought our house, I had no idea why new home communities had to have HOA dues.
We lived in a 50 year old home back in California and didn’t have to pay for HOA. We couldn’t comprehend why new homes would make their residents pay to live in their community unless it was to keep their area safe.
I knew about the major reasons – taking care of the landscaping, irrigation systems, the waterscapes and so on and so forth. But why so much money? With new homes developing, I would have thought this would help keep the dues at a stable level. Yet I got a letter in the mail earlier this year telling me they are increasing our dues and attached a cryptic expense sheet justifying this increase. While we have this increase, I see strange cars parked out on the street, graffitti on some walls, and vandalism. With this much money you would think they’d also have someone taking care of this. But no. Actually the company is based in Scottsdale and they only have one representative in the model center. If we saw a car parked out for more than 3 days, we had to file a complaint form and submit it to the Scottsdale office. Why do we need to do this? When graffiti or vandalism happens in our community a long period of time elapses before anything happens. There should be some patrol to protect our community from this. If I am going to pay so much money in dues, I’d rather see the money going to something that actually makes a difference to keep our community safe. Grrr.

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