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How Managers help communities achieve their goals

Last week we spoke about how associations can set achievable goals. An achievable goal is a specific, realistic, and attainable target that an individual or organization can reasonably reach within a given timeframe. Setting achievable goals involves considering various factors, including resources, capabilities, and external constraints.

This week let’s talk about two common association difficulties, the goals to overcome them, and how a community manager can help. 

One struggle that many community associations are always striving to achieve is boosting community participation. Whether it’s through meeting participation, committee involvement or just providing feedback through community surveys, communities require involvement from their membership. The community members themselves play an integral part in your association’s success. If your community is struggling with owner involvement, you are not alone. Unfortunately, many HOAs struggle with member participation.  

Idea: Consider introducing initiatives that would see greater participation from the

community. Ideas for community activities could be a community clean-up event, town hall meetings, a community newsletter, block parties, or seasonal events.

Specific Goal: Your specific goal could revolve around establishing various committees to help plan and coordinate community events intended to increase owner participation. Committees are made up of owners in the community who volunteer their time and expertise to benefit the community. Committees can help shoulder some of the workload normally carried by the Board of Directors, who are also community volunteers.

How your manager can help: Community Managers have a wealth of knowledge. Think of them as Jack of all trades with a broad knowledge base including topics such as governing documents, association law, facilities maintenance, and budgeting practices, to name a few. In addition to managing your community, they most likely manage several others and may be able to recommend some ideas or tactics that they’ve seen bring success to other communities just like yours. While your community manager does not manage committees directly (this is done by the board of directors) they help advise the board on the necessary steps to forming an effective committee that will assist the board in achieving the goal of more owner involvement.

Another area that many associations struggle with is violations of the community’s CC&Rs, rules and regulations, or architectural standards. Ensuring that owners adhere to the rules and standards set out for the community helps preserve the aesthetic of the community which in turn ensures that property values increase.    

Problems with violations can arise when communities have excessive numbers of violations, not enough enforcement of regulations, and nonuniform enforcement of standards.

Idea: Improve violation processing to help property values increase.

Specific Goal: Your specific goal could aim to reduce CC&R violations by 30% within the first three quarters of the year.

How your manager can help: Your community manager has extensive practice with violations. Generally, managers will be responsible for performing community inspections where violations of the community documents are noted, and subsequent notices are sent to owners.

To accomplish the goal of decreasing violations by 30%, first, a review of the community standards should be conducted. Managers can help identify where language might be outdated or no longer comply with the current aesthetic of the community. For example, the architectural standards dictate that only two planters are allowed on a front porch, but the Board or architectural committee will approve additional planters upon request. The manager will send violations to homes with more than two planters because the manager is going off the current language in the documents. In this instance, the language should be updated to allow for an additional number of planters to be determined by the board or committee, thus eliminating the need for the manager to create violations and send notices.

The second step in this process involves educating community owners on the importance of their adherence to community standards. Ensuring that owners understand the reasoning behind any changes or updates to the documents and how their effect on property values is key. Your community manager can help relay this information to the community in many ways, guaranteeing that all owners are receiving a cohesive explanation of the document language.

Association managers acts as a facilitator, organizer, and coordinator to help associations achieve its community goals by addressing various aspects of management, communication, and community engagement. Their diverse skill set, encompassing communication, governance, finance, and conflict resolution, makes them indispensable contributors to the overall success of residential associations. Recognizing and appreciating the pivotal role of association managers is key to fostering vibrant, harmonious, and prosperous communities.

Does your community need help achieving their goals? myStreet Community Management can help!

Join us next time as we dive into community documents, what they mean, and how communities use them.

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