Today, homeowner associations are much more prevalent than in the past. You pass by them on your way to work. You probably live in one, know someone who lives in one or will live in one in the future. What drives the growth in community associations? What are the advantages to living there?
To answer these questions, let’s look at the characteristics of the most successful homeowner associations. What do they provide for the owners that makes people want to live there?
· Residents share amenities that they cannot afford to build or maintain alone — pool, tennis courts, clubhouse, etc.
· Homeowner maintenance is reduced because common community areas are landscaped and maintained by the HOA.
· HOAs offer efficiencies that can make homes more affordable, a benefit for first-time homebuyers, retirees, and others looking for more home at less cost.
· Individual homeowner property values are protected by regulating the appearance and resident actions in the association — paint colors, parking, storage buildings, etc.
· HOAs establish a community environment for those who want to participate — neighborhood activities and events where you can meet your neighbors.
· Associations provide an opportunity for leadership positions, volunteers, or a voice in the community vision for owners who want to contribute.
· HOAs can offer protection from crime through gated communities or neighborhood watch programs.
The majority of people who live in a community are happy with their lifestyle and association. As a Board member, you want to keep homeowners engaged and satisfied. Here are a few things you should consider to keep your community thriving.
· Accept that there’s always some negativity in a community. Instead of focusing on the negative, spend your time concentrating on the satisfied 95%.
· Each HOA Board member should be serious about his/her role in serving the homeowners and leading a flourishing community.
· Training is critical for Board members to lead their community successfully.
· It takes more than a few people to run a successful community. Homeowners get from their community what they are willing to put into it themselves.
· Community living is not for everyone. HOAs have rules and regulations that must be followed. After all, those rules and regulations are the reason why many homeowners chose to live in your community.