Now is the time to start evaluating whether your HOA management team is making all the necessary preparations for the new year to ensure that your neighborhood will thrive. An HOA has many responsibilities with regard to maintaining property for its residents, and it’s important to have a reliable management team to help carry out those tasks. Here are some essential tips to keep in mind when seeking out an HOA management team who will effectively keep your community up to standard and protect the lifelong investment that you call home.
Here are some questions to ask to evaluate the efficacy of your current HOA management team:
- Are you getting the results you need?
- Is your HOA management team abiding by the 10 steps outlined by the California compliance guidelines?
- Do you know what the new laws are for 2021 and what changes are being made to ensure they are being followed?
- Are you aware of the plans for budgeting and financial accounting for the upcoming year?
- Has your annual reserve study been conducted by a certified reserve company?
One of the primary obligations of an HOA management team is to create and maintain a budget for both day-today operations and money allocated for annual property upkeep. This must be done while following the rules of fiscal accounting as outlined by state law to avoid fines.
In order to efficiently manage money from the dues that are collected from its residents, it is crucial that a management team does proper accounting to cover its daily operational expenses and pay vendors for routine maintenance in its communities.
HOA management should check in with vendors annually to identify any changes in price so that they can update their budget. Each year, HOA board members must approve the new budget before the year is over, so management should begin creating the new year’s budget in September. (If you are in the market for a new HOA management team, this is also the best time to start hunting for a new one.)
This budget also includes both a reserve fund and an emergency fund, and your management team should be diligent about never commingling these two funds. Reserve funds are those that the board deems necessary to have available in the event of the need for a repair or replacement of a property element the HOA is required to maintain. Emergency funds are entirely separate accounts used only in emergency situations to repair high-priority structural issues that occurred due to damages from unexpected acts of nature. A healthy financial reserve is funded above 70%, but ideally somewhere between 75% and 100%.
In addition to tasks like managing the collection of dues, an important aspect of HOA management is financial accountability. A qualified HOA management team is always up-to-date on what is currently owed and what has already been collected in order to ensure that bills are being paid on time. This is applicable to ongoing services like landscaping or garden service. How often is your HOA management team looking at your statements to keep tabs on account receivables and payables?
Performing Routine Maintenance Checks
It is essential that an HOA management team performs routine maintenance checks to ensure that everything is functioning properly and that the aesthetics of the neighborhood are visually appealing. If anything seems to be broken or deteriorating faster than anticipated, the HOA management team must then present the cost of fixing this issue to the board, who will then vote on whether or not they think it should be repaired. By performing these scheduled assessments, the management team is being cost-effective and proactive, avoiding what may potentially become a sizeable expense, especially if neglected for too long!
Hiring Reliable Vendors
It is very important that HOA management companies take the time to do research and acquire proper references when hiring vendors, contractors, and other professionals necessary in maintaining a property. An HOA team should implement proper protocols to verify third-party vendors, such as making sure they have the proper professional experience, are reputable with a good-standing track record, and, most of all, can be trusted.
Does your current HOA management company check all the boxes? Consider Atlantic & Pacific HOA Management Team, as they have a vast amount of knowledge and expertise. A&P has provided exceptional service for 41 years in San Diego and has a highly respected group of personnel working to uphold the highest standards in the communities they represent. They pride themselves on always looking out for the best interest of their residents and have a history of reliability. For a comprehensive evaluation of your current HOA management company, contact Atlantic & Pacific’s Director of Community Associations, Mr. Dominic Cirillo, TODAY! Call (858) 672-3100 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.