Everyone wants to live in a community that they enjoy and feel fits their needs and lifestyle. HOA communities can provide a lot of wonderful benefits and be a place families are proud to call home. If you’re someone who always has ideas for ways to improve things or make processes more efficient, serving on the HOA board may seem like a great idea. You’ll be on the front lines of decision making and have your voice heard.

Not so fast. Board membership can be very rewarding, but it’s not for everyone. Before you jump in head first and throw your name into the hat, here are a few things to consider:

Are you good at making tough decisions? While some problems have a clear answer, others are not so cut and dry. Are you able to stay impartial and make hard decisions based on facts and input from others? Remember that you’re acting in the best interest of the community as a whole. When your neighbor violates the HOA rules, you have to be willing to enforce what is right.

Do you have a thick skin? HOA board members hear from happy homeowners, but also their fair share of unhappy ones. You can’t take issues personally and must remember that you can’t please everyone all the time. It’s important to be able to separate your personal life from your role as a board member.

Can you keep an open mind? Just because something has always been done one way doesn’t mean there aren’t better options. You have to be willing to hear people out and consider their views and ideas. You might not always have all of the answers – or the best answers – so be open to collaborating with others.

Are you willing to put in the time and effort? There is a lot of planning and decision making that goes into running an effective HOA. That means you must be familiar with the governing documents, comfortable with planning budgets and projects, open to researching and negotiating with vendors, available for meetings, and regularly communicating with the property manager. Depending on the size of your HOA, you may have to wear several hats. Are you ready to make that commitment?

It can be a good idea to talk to current (or former) board members to learn more about their job and what it entails. This can give you a better feel for if the position is the right move for you right now. Having a strong board is important, so if you’re up for the task, it can be a wonderful way to feel more connected to your community and make a positive difference. If it doesn’t feel like the right fit, ask about other ways that you can get involved and contribute – board membership isn’t the only option.

If your HOA could benefit from additional support and guidance, contact Kuester today and learn more about how a property manager can help. We offer a wide range of services to fit each community’s needs.

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