Taking credit when things go well and accepting the blame when they don’t is directly related to our self-esteem. It’s easy to point the finger to others when we can, but it’s difficult to accept blame even when it’s justified. How about when it isn’t justified? When you’re on an HOA Board, homeowners are quick to place the blame on you. In addition, Board members blame each other when something in the community goes awry. Welcome to the merry-go-round of blame! The truth is that Board members don’t always deserve the credit when things are good, nor do they always deserve the blame when things go wrong.

HOA Board members are easy fall guys because they make decisions for the community. However, many other people have input into community decisions, including vendors, committee members, specialists and other homeowners in the association. In addition, homeowners vote on many of the Board’s recommendations. Not everything is resting on the Board’s shoulders, even though it often looks like it.

Just whispering the words, “special assessment” will ignite fear and resistance throughout the community. All fingers point to the Board members for their lack of insight. The Board blames it on lack of funds due to delinquent homeowners, nature, poor workmanship, etc. This is the merry-go-round of blame once more. We see this happening frequently community associations in East Tennessee, especially when older communities are left to play catch up on their reserve fund.

New Board members may inherit problems and expenses, and it takes time to set things right. In the meantime, a lot can go wrong where homeowners blame the new Board members. Even if the Board does make a mistake, think twice before pointing fingers. It’s important to give new Board members time to get acclimated. Your community needs these volunteers, and the Board members need constructive homeowner input and community support.

Accepting the blame when you should is an admirable trait.  Refraining from pointing the finger at others is even more commendable. These two actions can make a positive difference in your Board meetings, your neighborhood relationships, and your self-esteem. Whether you are a Board member, serving on a committee or a homeowner…only you can choose when to get off the merry-go-round of blame and constructively use your energy and talent to help build a better community.


Wise Property Solutions is a property management company serving East Tennessee with offices in Knoxville, TN and the Tri-Cities, TN-VA. Specializing in Condominium Association Management, Home Owners Association Management, HOA Management and Gated Community Association Management.


Tri-Cities, TN-VA: 423-926-7373  

Knoxville, TN: 865-643-8989

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