Category Archives: Tips

How to Winterize your Home and Community

Winter weather can wreak havoc on your home or neighborhood, which is why proper winterization before the weather gets too cold is a must. Check out these different ways residents, HOAs and property management companies winterize homes and neighborhoods.

Create an Emergency Kit and PlanWinterize your home and community

In the event of a winter storm, you may be trapped, which is why an emergency kit is a must. Ensure it includes a first aid kit, necessary medications, food, drinking water and anything else you may need if you are trapped in your house for a few days. It’s also important to create a plan on what to do if a storm strikes and some members of the family aren’t home. How will everyone communicate? Where will they go if they can’t get home? Continue reading

Cleaning up After a Summer Storm

Just like any storm, a summer storm can cause severe damage to homes and surrounding areas. The downed trees, debris and damaged buildings can leave the neighborhood in disarray. Summer floods can even cause severe water damage. That’s why getting out there and cleaning up after a summer storm is so important.

What Damage Does a Summer Storm Cause?Protect your Home against summer storms

Depending on the type and severity, summer storms can cause a lot of different damage. Minor damage may include tossed debris, such as limbs and garbage, but the damage may be worse, including broken windows, roof damage, damage to landscaping and much more. Most HOAs will have guidelines regarding how fast this damage needs to be dealt with to ensure the neighborhood is kept looking great. Continue reading

Types of Fundraising Techniques

Generally, communities with HOAs require homeowners to pay monthly dues. These dues are used to pay for neighborhood upkeep and many other factors. However, in some cases, an optional cost may appear. For example, the community may decide it wants a community garden, but it isn’t in the budget. In these cases, holding a neighborhood fundraising event is the perfect solution. Check out these great ways to raise money.

Hold Hobby LessonsCommunity Fundraising Techniques

Everyone has a hobby they love, so why not let them share that hobby with the neighborhood. Residents can teach others how to do something, such as cooking, knitting or automotive care. The residents can volunteer to teach, and the HOA can charge a fee to attend, and the money can be used for whatever special project they are working on. Continue reading

How to Amend HOA Rules and Bylaws

Communities that have associations usually have set rules and bylaws, which are designed to make the neighborhood the best place to live. Some of those rules, however, may have been passed twenty years ago, or more, and they no longer mesh with current social norms, the needs of the HOA or the flow of the community. Luckily, with a little effort, these rules and bylaws can be amended.

Determine if the Rule Still Makes SenseAmending HOA laws

The process of creating HOA rules and bylaws is a constantly evolving process. The board should routinely examine the rules to determine if they still make sense. It’s also a good idea to pay attention to what residents are saying. If they are all complaining about the same rule, it may be time to look at it closer and see if it should be amended. For example, solar power is becoming more and more popular, but many HOAs may still have rules prohibiting solar panels on roofs. With the push toward going green, many HOAs may want to reconsider this rule, especially if their homeowners feel the rule should be amended. Continue reading

How to Establish Your Community’s Pool Rules

A community pool is a great perk for any neighborhood, and it may attract many potential residents. However, a pool without rules is a serious danger. When establishing your community’s pool rules, use these five guidelines to help you.

Identify the Age LimitEstablishing community pool rules

You don’t want toddlers running around your pool without parental supervision, so you’ll need to determine various age limits. Even if you choose to hire a lifeguard, it’s best to prohibit young children from entering the pool area without a parent or adult. However, you’ll also need to determine how old the escort needs to be. Will you allow 15-year-olds to monitor 7-year-olds, or do they have to be 18 or older? Continue reading

5 Steps to Choosing a Community Manager

Choosing a community manager can make or break an HOA. A good community manager will ensure the community excels, making the neighborhood more pleasant. Check out these steps in choosing a qualified community manager.

1. Do Your HomeworkHiring a community manager

Before considering anyone, it’s important to learn more about the community manager’s history. This first means learning if they have the necessary licensure. Next, determine their level of education and experience in managing property. Make sure the experience meshes with your own property (high-rise, detached, etc.). Finally, check references to find out what previous and current clients have to say. Doing all this pre-legwork will avoid wasting time and hiring someone who doesn’t work out. Continue reading

The Challenge With Some Community Members

TipsRunning an HOA is challenging, especially when community members are difficult. The best way to overcome these challenges is through good communication between the board and residents. When there is good communication, residents understand the rules and reasons, and they are more inclined to come speak when they have a comment or suggestion. Continue reading

Is Booting Going Too Far?

shutterstock_96759652HOAs have long complained about how difficult it can be to collect delinquent fees that they are owed by homeowners who rent out their homes. In response, some states have taken action to allow HOAs to demand payment from the tenants of properties that have past due rent or fees, even though they are not technically the ones who have an agreement with the association.

While many HOAs are breathing a sigh of relief that they now have more avenues to recoup their losses and put pressure on delinquent accounts, these laws have also created a situation where the people being held responsible are technically innocent parties that have been put in the middle of a conflict they may have no control over. Despite this, some associations are resorting to booting residents’ cars, even those owned by tenants and not delinquent owners. Is this going too far? Continue reading