The HOA Management industry is plagued with a few chronic issues: a lack of planning, inconsistent communication from property managers, financials that arrive late and/or are inaccurate, and unpredictable timelines for general deliverables.
We make five core guarantees to our clients to ensure these chronic industry shortcomings do not affect your HOA.
1. Complete, timely and accurate financials.
Board Members are the financial stewards of their HOAs. Having time to review and ask financial questions before the Board Meeting allows the Treasurer to ask the right questions, not only regarding the financials, but how they relate to the reserve study and other upcoming cash needs. Accounting is, at its heart, a series of checks and balances. One common issue in this industry is that expenses are not posted to the correct account. To prevent this, we have three sets of eyes on every profit and loss. First, the accounting department posts expenses to the appropriate account. Second your Property Manager, who has direct knowledge of the invoice related to the expense, double-checks that it is coded to the correct account. Finally, the accounting manager performs a final review.
2. A Weekly Email Update to the Board of Directors
The top complaint we hear regarding other HOA management companies is managers who are inconsistent in their communication, and a general lack of reporting. We interact with Board members all week long, but we know that Boards can benefit from a clean summary of what has been done, any delays that may be encountered, issues that the Board may be unaware of, seasonal reminders, and so on. But a report of our accomplishments, setbacks, updates on new and old business, and general reminders, is provided on a weekly basis to your Board of Directors via email. And it all ties to a 12-month strategic plan….
3. A Strategic Plan for all HOAs
There are so many priorities in an HOA. Some are actionable, others theoretical. Some are pressing items that need immediate attention (bids for a new landscaping vendor), while others are simply ideas that we want to ensure don’t slip through the cracks (is our HOA eligible for any grants or credits for water wise landscaping?). Keeping track of action items, strategies, and goals is essential. To accomplish these, we work with Boards to create a “two-page strategic plan” for the year ahead. Having a north star of where the HOA is headed allows Board members to assess what the management company is doing in relation to the mission of the HOA and the vision of the Board. We provide the HOA with a 12-month, 3-month, 1 month to-do list. When we complete the 1 month, we roll the 3 month down into the 1 month and re-asses to the 12 month.
4. Board Packets provided to Boards the Friday before the Board Meeting and draft minutes transcribed 3 days after the Board Meeting.
We’re all busy people, and having the time over the weekend before the Board Meeting to review the Board Packet eliminates last-minute questions and provides for a smooth-running meeting. While the meeting minutes are not approved until the next Board Meeting, a transcription no later than three days after the meeting allows everyone to make sure they are on the same page and that the minutes accurately describe the decisions made at the meeting. Fun Fact, HOA minutes are a record of decisions made, not conversations had – we work to be clear and efficient..
5. Monthly Eblast to all Homeowners.
Communication is not just for Board Members: we also report to owners on a monthly basis, because the industry is hungry for it. Those who attend the Board Meetings and the Board are intimately involved with everything that is going on in the community, but owner participation and engagement is down. Keeping everyone else in the loop takes the place of the monthly newsletter we used to mail to all homeowners. Once monthly, we send owners a list of accomplishments, updates, recommendations, and even tips: like local restaurant openings, seasonal maintenance considerations, industry best practices on insurance, and so on.