Homeowners Associations- From Good to Great!
Each community association has its own past, personality, qualities, and challenges, but all associations share common characteristics and core principals. Good associations try and maintain the character of their communities, protect property values, meet the established expectations of homeowners, and enforce the CC&Rs of the association. Most communities fall under this category of “good” but what truly helps a community association be “great”?
Great associations go the extra mile to promote a true sense of community, encourage active homeowner involvement, and create a culture of informed consensus. They focus on key elements and set a strong foundation to run the day-to-day operations of the associations. Here are some of the common core principals they implement:
1. Strong Leadership – Great associations typically are composed of excellent leaders who work together and put the interest of the community first. The board of directors, with the guidance of management, work harmoniously to become strong pillars in the community that owners can rely on for answers. This calls for the leaders to rise above personal interest and put the needs of others first. This helps achieve the greater good and tends to lead to a more successful path no matter what challenges the association may be faced with.
2. Smart Decision Making – A community that makes smart decisions goes back to having great leadership. Members of the board should make decisions based on the sole benefit of the association and not their own. Ego and pride need to be completely removed and decisions should be completely based on accurate information and on the communities’ rules & regulations. It is crucial that your Board and committee can respect final decisions to avoid any disconnect. A unified Board of directors and committee is a healthy one which creates a better dynamic for the association.
3. Responsible Budgeting – One of the biggest downfalls of an association can be failing to budget properly and prepare for those big expenses.
4. Successful Communication – Transparency is one of the best tools that can be used to communicate successfully with the HOA. Don’t leave owners guessing but instead be honest and keep them informed with the latest news. Maintaining the lines of communication open for upcoming events, projects, and board/annual meetings creates a sense of participation.
5. Community Involvement – Get homeowners involved by creating committees that promote opportunities for owners to pitch in. For example, committees can be formed that focus on architecture, security, social events, and landscape.
6. Clarity about Meetings – Concise and organized meetings that follow a clear agenda is a sign of a healthy HOA. During meetings it is important to be well prepared and informed with the correct information for both board members and association managers. During this time you want to bring light to certain topics and bring clarity on projects and events happening within a community.
7. Steady Policy Enforcement – Making sure that policies are widely known by the association and being enforced fairly amongst all members of the community. HOA is a corporation, and it should be treated as one by running it like a business. The CC&Rs must be implemented
All communities have the potential to become Great associations. It is important as leaders of an HOA to take a step back and evaluate where your community stands. It can be as simple as communicating and showing gratitude to homeowners.
Where does your HOA stand? If not sure and need assistance to become a great community contact us today and let Alliance Association Management help your community reach its full potential.