With a new year dawning, many communities and community associations are taking the time to reflect, to reassess, and to think about how they might improve upon community life and association governance in the months to come. As such, now is as good a time as any to think about the role of the HOA managers — and for HOAs without community managers to consider whether professional management might prove beneficial.
The first thing to consider is what an HOA manager (or, as is most often the case, an HOA management firm) does. Really, the sky is the limit, but the bottom line is that the manager works on behalf of the community, serving residents in general and the elected board of directors, in particular, by carrying out all the day-to-day functions of HOA governance. As such, the tasks of the HOA manager might include collecting assessments; bookkeeping; overseeing the upkeep of common areas, and of landscaping; facilitating trash removal; resolving disputes between neighbors; and more.
The question, then, is whether your community association might benefit from the services of a professional manager. If you live in a larger community, the answer is almost certainly yes, because the more residences there are, the more work there is to be done. The boards of directors of larger communities usually find HOA management companies to be very helpful, simply because there is so much community to manage!
Even smaller communities sometimes benefit from the presence of an HOA manager, however. Remember that it falls to the board of directors to resolve disputes, collect dues, and ensure the fair and even-handed application of HOA rules and regulations. What happens, then, if there are no volunteers in the community who have the time or the willingness to fulfill these tasks? That is when hiring a management firm becomes crucial.
In short, HOA managers offer myriad services to make the lives of HOA board members easier—and they offer services made to fit the needs of communities of all sizes. Thinking critically about the role of the HOA manager is a fine way to begin this new year in the life of your community!