Another year has come and gone. It’s time to prepare for 2017 and make it the HOA’s best year yet. There are a lot of loose ends to tie up and ways to be proactive before saying farewell to 2016. Getting everyone on board – and on the same page – can help to kick off January on a positive note and set the board up for success. Here are a few tasks the HOA should consider as December winds to a close:
- Review Financials
Is the new budget set? Review annual expenses and decide if there needs to be a shift in funds from one area to another, or a change in assessments to cover anticipated costs of upcoming projects or repairs. Don’t forget to include homeowners in decisions and be transparent about how money will be spent and what the status of reserves and operating budgets are.
- Gather Tax Documents
With a new year comes tax season. Make sure that all necessary financial documents are finalized at the end of the year and kept together for when you’re ready to file taxes. Talk to a financial consultant or your management company about what is needed if you are unsure. It’s better to keep everything and shred what you don’t need later than to find out that materials are missing.
- Prepare New Board Members
Will there be roles that are changing with the start of the year? Take steps to ensure new board members have what they need to be successful. Go over the governing documents, reaffirm responsibilities, offer advice, and make time for training. Having a smooth transition between board members can keep the HOA moving forward seamlessly.
- Thank Homeowners
Take a few moments to thank the homeowners who have volunteered their time throughout the year on committees or helping with special events. A shout-out in the newsletter or on the community website can be a wonderful way to acknowledge their hard work and commitment. It can also strengthen relationships as homeowners feel more valued and appreciated.
- Set Goals
What does the HOA want to accomplish in the new year? Having short- and long-term goals can provide direction and motivation. Does the board want to increase homeowner participation? Enhance reserve funding? Switch to paperless or adopt other environmentally friendly and cost-saving practices? Now is the time to decide on goals and put plans in place to reach them. Don’t forget – they can be adjusted as the year progresses.
Hopefully the HOA is well on its way to wrapping up year-end activities and gearing up for another productive year. If you’re struggling, contact your property manager for guidance and assistance so you can feel more confident and prepared moving forward. Kuester Management Group is proud to partner with HOAs throughout the Carolinas and help them to operate more efficiently and effectively.