Tag Archives: Management

A list of the Do’s and Dont’s in HOA Management:


Community Associations

  • Customer service. Answer your calls and emails within 24 hours of receipt. Even if you don’t have an answer, let your client/homeowner know that you are working on it.
  • Know your community. Set your goals to be proactive, not reactive.
  • Be respectful. Treat that nasty, arrogant man or woman with respect; they may be your next Board President.
  • Maintain your cool. If a homeowner is calling you names and yelling, don’t take it personally. Nine times out of ten, they are just having a bad day and you have been chosen to take it out on. Surprisingly, after they have vented, they will often call you back to apologize.
  • Support staff. Acknowledge and appreciate those that are there to support you. It only takes a second to add a line to your email after they have gathered information for you to say, Hey, I appreciate all you do for me.
  • Never, ever lie. If you have forgotten or not completed a task given you by the Board, tell them I am sorry. I overlooked that directive but I will follow up immediately. The Board will understand that sometimes unforeseen things happen. If you are straight forward and provided you don’t make a habit of overlooking your assignments, they will understand.
  • Rumblings of dissatisfaction. Working for a management company means client retention. If you feel, hear or suspect any dissatisfaction, then you need to address this issue with your supervisors. What begins as a tempest in a teakettle ultimately could lead to a hurricane. Less clients for your company can mean cuts backs in the work force.
  • Ask questions. No one has all the answers all of the time. Ignorance is not bliss if you have read the documents wrong or given your Board misinformation. Better to say, I don’t have an answer at this time, but I will research the issue and report back promptly.
  • Stay focused. On the days that every call you get is from a cranky homeowner, every email seems full of hate, you feel sure that your supervisor appears to be looking at you with thoughts of terminating your employment, and you are ready to just give up. . . you might be surprised that the next call is from a homeowner or Board member telling you how much they appreciate you, the next email is one giving you a glowing reference on a job well done, or you are paged to come to the reception desk and find a floral delivery from a grateful Board/Homeowner, and you see your supervisor in the hallway and well, three out of four ain’t bad.

Riverside Property Management is a Homeowners association management company management company proudly serving Roswell, Alpharetta, Buckhead, Marietta and all of North Georgia. Riverside is also an expert Georgia condo association management company and high rise Atlanta association management company. To find out more about Riverside Property Management and why it is one of Georgia’s fastest growing property management companies, go to www.riversidepropertymgt.com. You’ll be glad you did.  (678) 866-1436

Why Professional HOA Management in Marietta and Kennesaw?


Beautiful Cottage Styles

Beautiful Cottage Styles

Most HOA Homeowners’ often have the belief that management is the sole obligation of the elected Board of Directors. While self-management is ideal for the early start of your neighborhood, they can become inadequate with sufficient maintenance responsibilities, tax issues, or other avoidable problems after the Association matures. HOA Management organizations can enter at this stage and provide the necessary help to preserve and even improve the neighborhood. The cost of HOA management companies are much less than the consequences of mismanagement caused by limited time or lack of knowledge of governing body.  Self-management was an idea originally developed by developers who had the belief that the  volunteers can manage all jobs at no additional cost. Volunteers today have much more work today.

HOA management requires considerable knowledge of the various areas such as conflict resolution, cost management, legal, dues collection, maintenance and most importantly, a running knowledge of the Covenants and By-Laws. Volunteers are not continuously trained  in each subject and very often do not have the time needed to learn each facet. Specialists can take care of daily duties, assist in the fiscal planning and reporting, manage vendor quality, and enforce Covenants. Association Management service can ensure that all requirements are met to maintain the  value of each home.
Long-term planning, service experience, and familiarity are very important to home value.

Board Members eventually discover they have bitten off more than you can chew. Monitoring without professional guidance is difficult and often causes problems between homeowners in the community.

HOA management companies help with a couple of crucial elements of the district administration: finance and operations. Collection of fees or how the funds are spent can cause conflicts between neighbors.  Every encounter from the self-managed Board ends up with some kind of confrontation. Boards currently experiencing problems like these can get rid of them by giving these daily tasks to professionals. Research your companies carefully.  A board should not only assess the price of these solutions, but the quality of services offered.

Call (678) 866-1436 for more information!  www.riversidepropertymgt.com

Riverside Property Management in Kennesaw works with homeowner and condo associations providing a variety of management, code enforcement, consulting and educational services, reserve studies, budgeting assistance and maintenance planning expertise.

Why Professional HOA Management in Marietta and Kennesaw?


Most HOA Homeowners’ often have the belief that management is the sole obligation of the elected Board of Directors. While self-management is ideal for the early start of your neighborhood, they can become inadequate with sufficient maintenance responsibilities, tax issues, or other avoidable problems after the Association matures. HOA Management organizations can enter at this stage and provide the necessary help to preserve and even improve the neighborhood. The cost of HOA management companies are much less than the consequences of mismanagement caused by limited time or lack of knowledge of governing body.  Self-management was an idea originally developed by developers who had the belief that the  volunteers can manage all jobs at no additional cost. Volunteers today have much more work today.

HOA management requires considerable knowledge of the various areas such as conflict resolution, cost management, legal, dues collection, maintenance and most importantly, a running knowledge of the Covenants and By-Laws. Volunteers are not continuously trained  in each subject and very often do not have the time needed to learn each facet. Specialists can take care of daily duties, assist in the fiscal planning and reporting, manage vendor quality, and enforce Covenants. Association Management service can ensure that all requirements are met to maintain the  value of each home.
Long-term planning, service experience, and familiarity are very important to home value.

Board Members eventually discover they have bitten off more than you can chew. Monitoring without professional guidance is difficult and often causes problems between homeowners in the community.

HOA management companies help with a couple of crucial elements of the district administration: finance and operations. Collection of fees or how the funds are spent can cause conflicts between neighbors.  Every encounter from the self-managed Board ends up with some kind of confrontation. Boards currently experiencing problems like these can get rid of them by giving these daily tasks to professionals. Research your companies carefully.  A board should not only assess the price of these solutions, but the quality of services offered.

Call (678) 866-1436 for more information!  www.riversidepropertymgt.com

Riverside Property Management in Kennesaw works with homeowner and condo associations providing a variety of management, code enforcement, consulting and educational services, reserve studies, budgeting assistance and maintenance planning expertise.

A list of Do’s and Dont’s for HOA Management:


Community Associations

  • Customer service. Answer your calls and emails within 24 hours of receipt. Even if you don’t have an answer, let your client/homeowner know that you are working on it.
  • Know your community. Set your goals to be proactive, not reactive.
  • Be respectful. Treat that nasty, arrogant man or woman with respect; they may be your next Board President.
  • Maintain your cool. If a homeowner is calling you names and yelling, don’t take it personally. Nine times out of ten, they are just having a bad day and you have been chosen to take it out on. Surprisingly, after they have vented, they will often call you back to apologize.
  • Support staff. Acknowledge and appreciate those that are there to support you. It only takes a second to add a line to your email after they have gathered information for you to say, Hey, I appreciate all you do for me.
  • Never, ever lie. If you have forgotten or not completed a task given you by the Board, tell them I am sorry. I overlooked that directive but I will follow up immediately. The Board will understand that sometimes unforeseen things happen. If you are straight forward and provided you don’t make a habit of overlooking your assignments, they will understand.
  • Rumblings of dissatisfaction. Working for a management company means client retention. If you feel, hear or suspect any dissatisfaction, then you need to address this issue with your supervisors. What begins as a tempest in a teakettle ultimately could lead to a hurricane. Less clients for your company can mean cuts backs in the work force.
  • Ask questions. No one has all the answers all of the time. Ignorance is not bliss if you have read the documents wrong or given your Board misinformation. Better to say, I don’t have an answer at this time, but I will research the issue and report back promptly.
  • Stay focused. On the days that every call you get is from a cranky homeowner, every email seems full of hate, you feel sure that your supervisor appears to be looking at you with thoughts of terminating your employment, and you are ready to just give up. . . you might be surprised that the next call is from a homeowner or Board member telling you how much they appreciate you, the next email is one giving you a glowing reference on a job well done, or you are paged to come to the reception desk and find a floral delivery from a grateful Board/Homeowner, and you see your supervisor in the hallway and well, three out of four ain’t bad.

Riverside Property Management is a Homeowners association management company management company proudly serving Roswell, Alpharetta, Buckhead, Marietta and all of North Georgia. Riverside is also an expert Georgia condo association management company and high rise Atlanta association management company. To find out more about Riverside Property Management and why it is one of Georgia’s fastest growing property management companies, go to www.riversidepropertymgt.com. You’ll be glad you did.  (678) 866-1436

 

Why Professional HOA Management in Atlanta?


 

Most HOA Homeowners’ often have the belief that management is the sole obligation of the elected Board of Directors. While self-management is ideal for the early start of your neighborhood, they can become inadequate with sufficient maintenance responsibilities, tax issues, or other avoidable problems after the Association matures. HOA Management organizations can enter at this stage and provide the necessary help to preserve and even improve the neighborhood. The cost of HOA management companies are much less than the consequences of mismanagement caused by limited time or lack of knowledge of governing body.  Self-management was an idea originally developed by developers who had the belief that the  volunteers can manage all jobs at no additional cost. Volunteers today have much more work today.

HOA management requires considerable knowledge of the various areas such as conflict resolution, cost management, legal, dues collection, maintenance and most importantly, a running knowledge of the Covenants and By-Laws. Volunteers are not continuously trained  in each subject and very often do not have the time needed to learn each facet. Specialists can take care of daily duties, assist in the fiscal planning and reporting, manage vendor quality, and enforce Covenants. Association Management service can ensure that all requirements are met to maintain the  value of each home.
Long-term planning, service experience, and familiarity are very important to home value.

Board Members eventually discover they have bitten off more than you can chew. Monitoring without professional guidance is difficult and often causes problems between homeowners in the community.

HOA management companies help with a couple of crucial elements of the district administration: finance and operations. Collection of fees or how the funds are spent can cause conflicts between neighbors.  Every encounter from the self-managed Board ends up with some kind of confrontation. Boards currently experiencing problems like these can get rid of them by giving these daily tasks to professionals. Research your companies carefully.  A board should not only assess the price of these solutions, but the quality of services offered.

Call (678) 866-1436 for more information!  www.riversidepropertymgt.com

Riverside Property Management in Kennesaw works with homeowner and condo associations providing a variety of management, code enforcement, consulting and educational services, reserve studies, budgeting assistance and maintenance planning expertise.

A list of Do’s and Dont’s for HOA Management:


 

Community Associations

  • Customer service. Answer your calls and emails within 24 hours of receipt. Even if you don’t have an answer, let your client/homeowner know that you are working on it.
  • Know your community. Set your goals to be proactive, not reactive.
  • Be respectful. Treat that nasty, arrogant man or woman with respect; they may be your next Board President.
  • Maintain your cool. If a homeowner is calling you names and yelling, don’t take it personally. Nine times out of ten, they are just having a bad day and you have been chosen to take it out on. Surprisingly, after they have vented, they will often call you back to apologize.
  • Support staff. Acknowledge and appreciate those that are there to support you. It only takes a second to add a line to your email after they have gathered information for you to say, Hey, I appreciate all you do for me.
  • Never, ever lie. If you have forgotten or not completed a task given you by the Board, tell them I am sorry. I overlooked that directive but I will follow up immediately. The Board will understand that sometimes unforeseen things happen. If you are straight forward and provided you don’t make a habit of overlooking your assignments, they will understand.
  • Rumblings of dissatisfaction. Working for a management company means client retention. If you feel, hear or suspect any dissatisfaction, then you need to address this issue with your supervisors. What begins as a tempest in a teakettle ultimately could lead to a hurricane. Less clients for your company can mean cuts backs in the work force.
  • Ask questions. No one has all the answers all of the time. Ignorance is not bliss if you have read the documents wrong or given your Board misinformation. Better to say, I don’t have an answer at this time, but I will research the issue and report back promptly.
  • Stay focused. On the days that every call you get is from a cranky homeowner, every email seems full of hate, you feel sure that your supervisor appears to be looking at you with thoughts of terminating your employment, and you are ready to just give up. . . you might be surprised that the next call is from a homeowner or Board member telling you how much they appreciate you, the next email is one giving you a glowing reference on a job well done, or you are paged to come to the reception desk and find a floral delivery from a grateful Board/Homeowner, and you see your supervisor in the hallway and well, three out of four ain’t bad.

Riverside Property Management in Kennesaw works with homeowner and condo associations providing a variety of management, code enforcement, consulting and educational services, reserve studies, budgeting assistance and maintenance planning expertise.

 

How to Run an HOA Board Meeting


The Secret to Good Board Meetings.

Board meetings should be productive, efficient meetings where the board conducts business.  Are your board meetings productive and efficient? Does the board meet to conduct business or socialize? Are you getting the most out of your meetings?

Consider doing a few of these things:

Prepare a Realistic Agenda. Five page agendas with 50 objectives set out may be impressive but they are unrealistic and counter-productive.  You need to set a list of priorities for each meeting and focus on those issues.  If you have 50 issues you want to address, spread them out over the course of the year.  You will be more efficient and see better results if you are able to manage your agenda.

Set an end time to your meetings. Meetings should last no more than an hour.  Start the meeting when it is scheduled to begin and get straight to business. If you collectively have the focus to get done in an hour you’ll be amazed with how much you can accomplish. If you have no time limit, the meeting will typically drag on and a lot of time will be wasted. When time is wasted at a meeting then people are less likely to volunteer because they feel their time is wasted.  One hour meetings have a major impact on volunteers. Associations that hold focused, one hour meetings have more people volunteer. It’s also important to note that those volunteers stay active the in the community for much longer. Length of your board meetings may seem like a trivial matter, but it really does have a large impact on how the volunteers of the association view the organization and, in turn, how they view their role.

Be familiar with the Covenants and Bylaws. Key elements with which board members should familiarize themselves are the association’s governing documents that define the board’s authority. If you have a management company, they should provide guidance on your role as a board member, your fiduciary responsibility, specific board responsibilities from decision-making to administrative tasks, and how to conduct and participate in board meetings. Other vital information will include how to avoid personal liability, professional conduct at meetings, parliamentary procedures, the operating and reserve budgets, federal, state and local laws that impact your community, and appropriate insurance coverage.

Come prepared. Be familiar with the issues that will be addressed at the meeting.  If you have questions, ask them prior to the meeting so that your manager (if professionally managed) can have ample time to find the answers. This will help the meeting be more effective and brief. There is nothing more frustrating to those attending the meeting than for fellow board members to come unprepared and want to discuss issues at great length.

Make the meeting a time for action. Next, hold action oriented HOA board meetings.  Don’t just discuss issues, make decisions. Every item up for discussion should end in a vote to move forward in some way or table the issue with a clear understanding of why the item is being tabled and when it will be revisited. When taking action on an item make sure it is clear who will be responsible for getting that task completed. Ambiguity cripples a board.

Don’t be confrontational. Board members should recognize they are part of a team and not take a confrontational position with fellow board members or their management company. No one should have to work or conduct business in a hostile environment. Realize that at times you will not always agree, but take the position that even disagreement can bring compromise and consensus. Be concise with your opinion and thoughts and then be sure to listen to others. Always be respectful of your fellow board members and staff, as well as the homeowners. The tone of the board can set the tone of the community. So, if you want to have a healthy, vibrant and successful community, you should reflect that image as a board member.

Treat your Community Manager with Respect. Your community manager is your agent, not your employee. They act on behalf of the board and facilitate the decisions of the board.  Remember that they are professionals and should be treated as such. It can be detrimental to a board and its community to consistently be at odds with their management company. They are there to offer their expertise based on their experience, training and education to ensure that the board doesn’t compromise their fiduciary responsibility. A board should trust and rely on their management company’s vast experience and unlimited resources.  If your board has lost trust in the management company, have a frank discussion with the company’s CEO regarding whatever problems exist. Perhaps a different manager can restore your trust, eliminating the need to start all over with a new company.

Be a Team Player. If you recognize that, as a board member, you are part of a team of volunteers and management experts, you will be rewarded when you use those resources to make decisions that are based on sound business judgment. This, in turn, will inspire others to serve and build a team of future leaders who will want to emulate your leadership. By doing so, you will find serving on the board is not a burdensome chore, but a rewarding experience that you will value for years to come.

Be determined to have one of the best HOA’s in Atlanta by having an HOA management company that focuses on helping you have effective meetings.

HOA Cash Management Programs


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Cash management programs for Community Associations

Council members have a fiduciary responsibility not only to track revenue and expenses of the association, but also to use procedures that provide security for the assessments collected from homeowners and cost control. If your community association or management company has not recently revised its payment processing and cash management systems, you may not be aware of the innovations that can make your Board more efficient, save money and help increase your investment earnings.

Lockbox services designed for Community Partnerships
Does your staff still handles accounting manual assessment payments? If your association or management company is the opening of envelopes, posting payment information, preparing deposit slips and bring them to the bank, these activities consume a significant amount of management time and also increase the risk of theft and error . There is a solution: an automated treatment.
Automated processing services include a lockbox. A “lockbox” is a cash management tool that is a cost effective way to outsource most of the obligations associated with payment processing, saving time and money partnership.
Lockboxes have been available since the 1930s. They were designed to expedite the processing of payments by mail. Payments were sent to a PO box, closed and a delivery service could collect payments and transport it to their customers. The delivery of the contents of the box directly to the association eliminated the time lost by the post office to sort and deliver the payments. Computer imaging technology improved the process dramatically in the 1990s, making possible the creation of electronic payment files.
Today, the assessment payments are mailed directly to the lockbox, not the office of the association or management company. The controls are read by electronic scanners that reduces read errors, and payments are processed faster than it would be manually. Payments are credited to the account faster for the homeowner as well. The department of the association or management company accounting can upload files directly on your payment of accounts receivable system, eliminating manual entry of payments. The payment information is available to you online immediately.
Using a lockbox, associations often find they are able to reduce the time spent in processing payments and may be able to use staff to work on other tasks necessary to meet the daily needs of the association . How to find a lockbox service that meets the needs of your association?

1. Get recommendations from other professional associations or management companies what works for them and why.

2. Ask detailed questions about the technology used by the lockbox. The answer “using the latest technology” is not enough. Your questions should focus on specific services offered by the lockbox:
• Do you see a diagram and picture coupon?
• Are your electronic files compatible with your accounting system?
• Is the lockbox in use of their own software or licensed by third party? The costs are usually higher if the lockbox does not use its own software, because they must pay licensing and maintenance fees.
• What is the cost, if any? Most banks do not charge for the service in exchange for maintaining certain balances in checking and / or savings accounts.

3. Ask specific questions about what is working with the vendor to ensure that lockbox services fits your needs. Lockbox is held within the company or outsourced? How to handle errors? What kind of reports do you offer? How do you handle payments with on-line services to pay bills?

Cash Management Services Associations
It is important for all associations to ensure that financial institutions use to understand their needs. If they do, you may not be receiving advice and guidance you need to maximize the profitability of the funds of the association. In reviewing the cash management process, which should ask the following questions:

Are my reserve accounts performing as well as they could be?
I’m making the maximum rate of return on my money market accounts?
Do I have FDIC coverage on my CDs?
Do I have an investment manager we can trust to recommend investments that meet the regulations of my association and the investment policy?
Are all financial institutions that hold money for my association ensuring the highest level of protection of the funds?

If you are unsure, look for a financial services company specializing in industry owners’ association and work closely with them to implement an effective program management for an effective and efficient partnership.

Ask the right questions before taking over as HOA Chairman of the Board


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Since the job of president of the board is so important to the organization, becoming successful protagonist, who, becoming a major player taking the time to discover just what that entails. If you are a board member for a long time or new to the organization and are not familiar with the board, it helps to have conversations with several people inside and outside the organization:

Request the current chair of the board about the time commitment, difficult issues that arose during the term of office, unfinished board business, the board’s strategic plan, the vision became a protagonist in the organization, becoming the leading address over the next few years, and working relationships with the chief executive, board members, community leaders, donors and other stakeholders in the community.

Ask the CEO about their expectations of the president of the board and the employment relationship, the organization’s vision, personal goals and current and future relationships in the community. Discuss trends affecting the organization, the challenges and opportunities it faces, how it compares with similar local and national organizations and their financial health and a development plan.

Ask the president of the Governance Committee regarding the current leadership needs, qualities and experience he or she thinks will take the chairman role, the reasons being considered, and the state plans succession for the positions of the board.

Ask the treasurer of the organization, becoming a leading player in financial health, sources of funding and funding trends. Review the annual and audit reports.

Ask major donors, sponsors, and residents on community perceptions and expectations of the organization, the quality and quantity of programs and services are meeting the mission, and community problems or trends can affect the work of the organization.

These conversations will help create an image of the president of the board, becoming the protagonist role as seen through the eyes of others. These perspectives and experiences are important in recognizing the connections between the president and others and creating a realistic framework for his efforts as President. Think of this exercise as a way to begin to shape your own ideas about the work of the chairman and to identify areas warranting further exploration and possible change. As chairman of the board, does not necessarily follow from its predecessors, the steps of AO or accept what has been traditional practice. You will create a new path.

Adapted from the Chairman of the Board Manual, second edition of Mindy R. Wertheimer, PhD.

HOA meeting Seats


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Where you sit in a meeting that determines where you are. Foreign diplomats are particularly careful in choosing the shape of the table and sits next to who, from the slightest misstep can have disastrous results. King Arthur held their meetings at the round table so everyone can participate freely without the king dictating the debate. There are lessons to be learned from this experience that can be applied millennia to deal with HOAs and membership meetings. Each format requires different considerations seats.

Board meetings are designed for regular business transactions for the care and welfare of millions of dollars frequency of active members. As such, they should be held at places and times conducive to business. Meetings held in someone’s home, be a challenge.

At Council meetings start. Members are entitled to attend board meetings as an audience, not participants in the discussion or vote. To facilitate this right, there should be seats for a reasonable number of them. If meetings are held in small rooms with space only for the board, guests are shut out and the impression is that they are welcome. They look for the house has wider to accommodate so much advice and guests.

Avoid the use of living rooms with the exception of guest seating. It is very difficult to juggle the documents or take notes while sitting in a Lazy Boy. Meetings should be held at a table large enough to extend the programs, reports and other documents without having to continuously mix the pile. If using a kitchen table, remove everything except items meeting. Turn off cell phones home and during the meeting because the sound is always interrupted the discussion and pull someone out of the company in question.

If a pit boss, the president should sit down and address the meeting. The head of the table is the historical place of authority and no reason to buck tradition. The secretary records should sit at the opposite end of the table so that all directors can be more easily seen and heard. Customers should not sit at the table meeting of the board as this is an invitation to participate actively in the business.

Avoid the temptation to have the board to guests as a “panel”. This format of seats also invites the participation of the guests and makes it difficult for the board to talk to each other.

Formal meetings of the Board Ideally the board should meet in a place that is designed for meetings. Basics include a large conference table, good lighting, bathrooms, climate control and room for guests. If none exists in the HOA, find meeting rooms in the area of ​​community centers, libraries and churches. They can be closer and cheaper than you think.

There are several advantages to advance “the kitchen” in a formal meeting. The potential for distraction is greatly reduced: no phones, food, television, children, dogs and neighbors. The business meeting takes a real “business” of nature. People are less likely to remain in this environment or get into long discussions. As with the meetings at home, the seats must be appropriate for the board and the guests together at the conference table and invited to one side.

Annual meetings of Owners Association. These meetings should be carefully choreographed. Always keep them in a formal meeting place large enough to accommodate all the owners. Usually take ownership of gallery style with the board on a table in the head unless your group is small enough to fit around a round table of King Arthur. Ideally, the head of the table should be “half moon” or “U” so that all managers can see each other and the audience. Prevent the board feel like panel unless the meeting is intended to be a question and answer session with the directors of the “line of fire.” Make sure you have adequate sound system, if the room requires it.

Seating meeting is very important when it comes to getting things done efficiently. Set your sites for successful meetings and do not forget to check out their swords at the door.