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Community Inspections Part Three: Let’s talk Townhomes

Before we dive into maintenance suggestions, there are a couple of important points to consider regarding townhomes. Homeowners should carefully review their governing documents to distinguish their responsibilities from those of the association. This can vary significantly from one community to another, so thorough research is essential. While these documents may seem overwhelming, you should be able to find this information in your association's Declaration, often within a section related to maintenance. Below is an example.

As a reminder, an HOA inspection is not a structural inspection. HOA managers are looking for aesthetic irregularities; we are not engineers or general contractors.  If you have concerns about your home, please contact a construction industry professional for assistance.  

Now, let’s jump right back in with our townhome diagram.  

Chances are, if you read our last post, you probably spotted some familiar faces in this diagram.

We started at the top last time, so how about we work our way up! 

  • The lead walk provides a safe and accessible pathway for residents and their guests.  Regular cleaning ensures safe and inviting entryways.  Periodic repair and replacement of concrete or aggregate may also be required. 

  • Patio areas provide outdoor living space for residents to relax and entertain. Maintenance of patios includes regular cleaning, and inspection of any structures or furniture to ensure safety and aesthetics. Any modifications or additions to patio areas should be approved by the HOA to maintain consistency in design and uphold community standards. 

  • Patio slider doors facilitate easy access to patio areas while allowing natural light to illuminate the interior. Proper maintenance of patio slider doors involves regular cleaning of tracks and glass panels to ensure smooth operation and clarity. 

  • Chimney cleanouts provide access for maintenance and cleaning, ensuring optimal performance and safety of the chimney. You will want to ensure cleanouts are accessible and in good condition, adhering to HOA regulations for any repairs or modifications. 

  • Stoops provide a transition between the exterior and interior of the townhome. Keep stoops clean and in good repair, following your Association’s architectural guidelines for any alterations. 

  • Columns provide structural support and architectural elegance to the exterior of townhomes, often found on porches, porticos, or entryways. Regular inspection of columns is essential to detect any signs of damage, such as cracks, rot, or insect infestation. Any issues should be addressed promptly to ensure structural integrity. Additionally, periodic cleaning and painting or staining may be necessary to maintain the aesthetic appeal of the columns. 

  • Thresholds create a seal between the exterior and interior of the townhome, preventing drafts and moisture intrusion. Keep thresholds in good condition to maintain energy efficiency, and ensure any repairs maintain uniformity in design. 

  • The entrance abutment provides insulation and weatherproofing.  You will want to inspect and seal any gaps to prevent drafts or water intrusion. 

  • Door and window trim enhance the aesthetics of exterior doors and windows while providing protection from wear and tear. Maintenance involves regular cleaning and inspection to ensure it remains free from rot or damage.  Periodic painting may also be required depending on the material used. 

  • Bay window serves to let in natural light and add ventilation. The roof of the bay window will occasionally need paint, and you’ll want to make sure the window is sealed to prevent leaks, and the glass is cleaned.   

  • Shutters add charm and personality. Keep them clean, and repaint them when faded or stained. 

  • Downspouts and gutters channel rainwater away from the home, preventing water damage to the foundation and exterior walls. Regularly clean gutters and inspect for damage to ensure proper drainage 

  • Crown molding adds elegance and architectural detail to the exterior of townhomes. Regular cleaning and inspection of crown molding are necessary to preserve its beauty and integrity.  

  • Dormer windows add architectural interest and provide additional light and ventilation to interior spaces. Regular inspection and maintenance of dormer windows are essential to preserve their functionality and aesthetics. 

  • Attic vents play a crucial role in maintaining proper airflow within the attic space, preventing the buildup of heat and moisture which can lead to damage to the roof structure and insulation. Regular inspection and cleaning of attic vents are necessary to ensure they remain unobstructed and functional. Any debris or blockages should be cleared to promote efficient ventilation. Additionally, any damaged or deteriorated attic vents should be repaired or replaced in accordance with HOA guidelines to ensure optimal performance and prolong the lifespan of the roof. 

  • Chimney caps protect the chimney flue from moisture, debris, and animals while improving draft efficiency and preventing downdrafts. Regular inspection and cleaning are necessary. 


That wraps up our exploration of townhome exterior elements and maintenance best practices. Remember, living in a townhome offers real advantages - consider coordinating maintenance projects with your neighbors to save on costs. Your close proximity can often lead to shared savings if you opt for the same contractor for services or replacements.

By understanding the specific maintenance requirements and purposes of each exterior element of our townhomes, we can collaborate to preserve their beauty, functionality, and value, contributing to the overall harmony of the community. We truly appreciate your dedication and commitment to your neighborhood!

Our next and final post in this series will delve into community violations. See you next time.

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