If you’ve never served on a Homeowners Association board, it’s important you understand what your duties, responsibilities and obligations are and that you are, in fact, acting as a fiduciary on behalf of your fellow owners.
First and foremost, you must take your responsibilities as a board member seriously, always use good judgment, avoid conflict, be committed and be aware that the interests of the HOA take priority over your own. Being selfless and unbiased is a must.
Confidentiality is crucial. For example, if there’s a conversation about dues or competitive bids during a meeting and the board member tells someone outside of the board about it, they’ve potentially violated policy.
It’s important to be sensitive to potential conflicts of interest as they too can cause issues regarding your duty as a member. If something is being discussed in front of the board that a board member might have other involvement or interest in, it’s imperative that they disclose this and recuse themselves.
Remember too, that as a board members of the HOA its interests and well being come first and it’s important to think things through, while using common sense and sound judgment.
Communication with fellow board members, homeowners and the management company is also key to being effective in your role.
As a board member paying attention to the “little” things, like attending and participating in meetings, voting even when confronted with difficult choices, participating in community events, obeying deed restrictions, being financially responsible, treating everyone with courtesy and respect and passing responsible budgets in a timely fashion.
In the end, it’s quite simple. If all HOA board members maintain core values, do the job they signed up to do and use their heads, you’ll end up with a well run association.