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Working at a ridiculous HOA

January 24th, 2014 at 06:38 am

So my job interview went well. They did not offer me the job on the spot- but sent me for a drug test and said they'll be doing a background check.

The job is 90% great but the pay is a big troubling point though. It pays $8.50 an hour.

I assumed it would pay $10/hr since that is the going rate around here. I was hoping to negotiate up to $11-$12/hr. When the employer told me the pay I was speechless.

I tried to get $10/hr and the employer told me after 90 days they can probably increase to $10/hr. But that was a stretch so they didn't want me coming back at 90 days and trying to ask for higher thsn $10.

So for 3 months its $8.50/hr and then it goes up to what I thought I would minimally accept.

I have a bad feeling in my stomach about this because I've always accepted less than I wanted in pay and within a year I am really bitter. I really dont want to let money get in the way of my enjoyment of the job.

In all other aspects its an awesome job.


The job is working at a riding stable in a HOA. The HOA is an all inclusive sportsmans place. It has an equestrian center, golf course and boating marina for members (homeowners) to use only.

To buy into this place you have to submit an application with references and bank statements. Then you pay a $125,000 buy in fee so you can be allowed to purchase a property.

Then you buy a property. Bare lots are priced from $15k-$1 million. I found an 1100 sq ft guest house on an acre advertised for $400k with architectural drawings so you can build a main house. That was the only house I found for sale under $500k. The most expensive house has an asking price of $7 million.

Then you move in and pay $18k in annual membership dues.

You pay $2750 for maintenance.

You must spend at least $1500/yr at the restaurants in food and drinks.

You are charged $100/month for landscaping.

So your paying about $25k EACH YEAR to maintain your membership- after you paid $125k to become a member! And you still need to buy your property!

Then all the amenities have individual charges. If you call and schedule a riding lesson- there is a charge. There is a charge to have your horse bathed or body clipped. Any extra- the staff will jump to it- and then charge your account.

That's why I'm shocked they have the lowest pay rate of any barn in the area.

If offered- I'll still take it and hope there are perks to offset the low pay. Maybe I'll get to ride a lot. Or maybe the members tip. Or maybe we get sweet christmas bonuses.

5 Responses to “Working at a ridiculous HOA”

  1. laura Says:

    It is too bad the pay is so low, especially since they charge so much! I understand low pay at not-for-profits, but this ... really?!

    Good luck!

  2. CB in the City Says:

    Yeah, sounds like a greedy outfit to me -- charge for everything and pay your staff peanuts? However, it might be worth it for you to be able to do something you love.

  3. TashaC. Says:

    Thanks for the support. I don't understand why I'll be expected to produce premium service for below average wage. I'm worried if I have this mindset going in...it will get worse. I'm worried the employer will continue to cut corners with me after I start working there.

  4. PNWMom Says:

    Wow....minimum wage in Oregon is higher than $8.50. Hope it all works out and they will bump you after 90 days.

  5. Looking Forward Says:

    I'm thinking tips would happen, but who knows??
    And, if your first priority is to satisfy your horse itch then getting paid is just icing on the cake.

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