Fostering a Sense of Community in your HOA

 

Keeping neighbors neighborly; That’s what we at Gulf South Property Management do!

You don’t have to look far to see examples of Homeowner Associations (HOAs) being stereotyped as controlling, power-hungry organizations that bring about no discernible benefit. While some memes and blogs may go a little too far, in some instances there can be an underlying element of truth to that message.

We believe that a well-organized Association with the right intentions can turn any community around, no matter the history.

While keeping up appearances are all well and good, getting along with your neighbors is also equally important. After all, you wouldn’t want to end up featured on an episode of Fear Thy Neighbor would you?

Below we share a list of ways to foster a sense of community in your neighborhood. (more…)

How to handle a violation notice from your HOA


We often hear that the “HOA Nazis” are out to get them.  With nothing better to do with their time, they spend hours upon hours looking for infractions and sending out senseless violation notices. Who are these people and who do they think they are?!?

Of course, nothing could be further from the truth.

It’s easy to get frustrated when you think your homeowners association is telling you what you can and cannot do with your home … and they are.

Homeowners associations are charged with making sure everyone follows the rules.  Property  management companies are essential in helping to uniformly enforce the Covenants and Restriction and Rules that govern a community.

Remember, you purchased there for a reason – you liked how the neighborhood looked. It is the job of the HOA and the property management company to keep the association looking as good today as they day you moved in.

Here are four things to do if you receive a Violation Notice from your HOA

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Establishing Enforceable Rules for the Association

When you decide to purchase a home in a neighborhood that is subject to Covenants and Restrictions certain responsibilities follow – abiding by governing documents of the association, paying assessments timely and following the rules and regulations of the association.

To maintain the aesthetics of the subdivision the board must establish and maintain an enforceable set of rules that are clear, fair and enforced against all homeowners.  After all, those rules are likely the reason the neighborhood was attractive to you in the first place.

Here are a few tips for establishing Rules and Regulations that are clear, fair and, most importantly, enforceable.

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Maintaining Board Membership

It is inevitable that associations will go through board member resignations from time to time.  Resignations can result from a change in jobs, scheduling conflicts, a family health emergency or a move.  They  can also result from frustrated or overwhelmed members.  Maintaining consistency through board transitions is paramount.  One way to do that is to have the right property management company in place to work though the transition phase.

Below are a few tips to help minimize the avoidable resignations.

Here are a  few tips to assist your HOA in reducing board resignations.

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Well Funded Reserve Accounts

 

Members of the Board of Directors of neighborhood associations have responsibility for managing the association’s finances and creating budgets that allow a community to preserve property values.  A major part of this fiduciary responsibility is the board’s responsibility to budget for future repairs or unanticipated expenses.  To accomplish this goal, an up-to-date reserve fund is critical to the financial management of a community.

Here are four great reasons to make sure your reserves are properly funded:

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How to Make the Most of Annual Meetings

 

Annual meetings serve two functions, one of which is often overlooked.

Obviously the annual meeting is the place where the business of the association is conducted. Votes are taken and the Board of Directors is elected.

The more overlooked opportunity is the second function of the meeting.

In addition to conducting regular business, the annual meeting is an opportunity for the Board of Directors to show off their hard work by educating neighbors on the progress the Association has made over the past year and their vision for the upcoming year.

Here are a few helpful hints to make the most of your association’s annual meeting. (more…)

How to curb speeding in your community

It’s back to school time and that means lots of little kids running around.  From morning and afternoon bus stops to burning after school energy, children and pets are out and about this time of the year.

Here are tips on how to curb speeding in your community:

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Board Member Burnout??

Are you suffering from board member burnout?

While it’s a compliment to be selected to serve as a board member for your homeowners association, it’s also a big responsibility. From meetings to budgeting, the role of a board member is extremely robust.  When a handful of people are the designated decision makers for an entire community, it can be easy to get tired of fulfilling the never-ending duties of the role.

Read on for a few tips on how to avoid burning out before you’re ready.  (more…)

Which HOA Documents Control?

As a board member it’s important to review and understand the governing documents of your Homeowners Association.  In the event you or a fellow homeowner notice a conflict between association documents, you’ll need to know how to filter through all of the association’s information and know which document to follow.

But seriously…

What do you do if one of your HOA’s governing documents conflicts with another document or with state or federal laws?

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