There are about 325,203 homeowners associations in the U.S., but some are far more successful homeowners associations than others. What makes them different? Here are five traits of successful Homeowners Association boards:
1. They have a vision:
HOA community management boards that are successful define their community ideal before they decide how they’re going to achieve it. All board and community members should have input on the vision of their community. Brainstorming sessions with active participation from as many members as possible is crucial to understanding what you want your community to become, and from these ideas, you can start to construct a plan of action.
2. They have core goals:
A vision is a great place to start, but from there you have to find the steps that will get you there. The vision statement is a good starting point. Use it to map the long-term and short-term goals you’ll need to achieve in the future to reach your community ideal.
3. They communicate well:
The best HOA boards always keep their residents in the loop as much as possible. If they don’t, residents will feel like they aren’t part of the management process and won’t be as ready or willing to contribute. Members should always be encouraged to be involved and should never feel like they can’t have a say in their HOA community management processes. Communicating clearly reduces the chance that major conflicts will occur and keeps members engaged and committed.
4. They find leaders:
Resident participation is a constant struggle for many HOAs. Even your strongest board members may tire quickly if no one else steps up to help with community management. To prevent this, HOAs must constantly be on the lookout for good leaders in the community. Be prepared to groom community members with potential on a continual basis. Of course, finding new leaders will only be effective with clear processes for succession that ensure that all valuable information is transferred to new members. Sixty-three million individuals were members of HOAs in 2012, so as long as your paying attention, you should find no shortage of help.
5. They consider HOA management services:
Outsourcing certain functions to HOA property management companies can be a great way to supplement your volunteer force with professionals with expertise in areas like vendor relations, legal disputes and property law. The HOA industry in the U.S. employs about 901,726 people who work to make communities better places to live. Professional HOA community management can give your community the extra efficiency it needs to reach its goals.
Work on these qualities to improve your own Homeowners Association!