Boards - General

Back to homepage

Total Board Recall in Your HOA

The natives are restless. The smell of tar wafts through the night air and somewhere a chicken loses its feathers. The board prepares for impending doom.  Board recalls don’t happen out of the blue. Like Mount St. Helens, they give

Read More

Shortening the Board Member Learning Curve

For those who live in community associations, board membership should be viewed in the same vein as a civic duty. An effective board of directors is essential for the financial and administrative wherewithal and stability of every community association, so

Read More

What is Condo Association Fiduciary Duty?

The term “fiduciary duty” comes up often when talking about Condo and HOA Boards. According to US Legal.com the official definition of fiduciary duty is:  “A fiduciary duty is an obligation to act in the best interest of another party…A

Read More

How to Make Condo Boards Successful: The Ultimate Checklist

One of the questions I’m often asked is what makes a condo board successful. I’ve been in the thick of things as President of my condo board, and I’ve spoken to people involved with dozens of other condo boards. From

Read More

8 time-saving strategies for community associations to avoid strain

For many community association residents, serving on the board is a rewarding experience. They guide how the money gets spent, and they reap satisfaction when improvement projects are successfully completed.  Board service also can be a frustrating, thankless chore that

Read More

Fighting Apathy: Identifying Great Condo Board Member Candidates

Condo Association Boards have an extremely challenging job when it comes to running their Associations. They have substantial control over finances and the direction a community goes. The fear of breaking bad – and resulting horror stories – is very

Read More

HOA Target, Process & Objective

The lack of communication is often one of the biggest complaints that many boards receive. Yet, good communication is a fundamental imperative of every homeowner association. If the board is to succeed with its objectives, it needs cooperation from the

Read More

Whose job is it anyway? The difference between the roles of Property Managers and the Board of Directors

For most members of the condo community, the Property Manager is the face of the condo corporation. They are responsible for day-to-day running of the condo corporation, and I find that people can get confused about the difference between the

Read More

The First Steps to Learn to be a Condo Board Member

New Board members are are a key to fighting apathy. They come in full of energy, ready to change the Association for the better. They know what they’re getting into, but how do you get to work? This article is

Read More

HOAs: How to make community service fair

It is a basic truth that the risk in any venture should match the reward. High risk investments should bring high yields, while low returns may be acceptable for very secure investments.  The same principle should be applied to volunteer

Read More

How to make sure volunteer work does not bring risk

It is a basic truth that the risk in any venture should match the reward. High risk investments should bring high yields, while low returns may be acceptable for very secure investments.  The same principle should be applied to volunteer

Read More

HOA Financial Tips for New Board Members

Becoming a new member of an HOA board is an exciting time. You’re put in an important and exciting position to make decisions for your community. It might be overwhelming at the beginning, but the benefits are great. And one

Read More

New HOA Board Members – Get up to Speed on Your Community Finances

Congratulations, and thank you for stepping up to serve your community on the board of directors! As an HOA or community association board member, you get to run a business and make key decisions that will impact your community now

Read More

6 ways to manage a successful homeowners’ association

It is always a convenient option to form a group of like-minded people, chosen by the rest of the residents to maintain harmony in the neighborhood. For this purpose,homeowners’ associations are formed so that one can mark the elements that

Read More

Contending with Apathy Towards Board Member Service in Community Associations

Community association living has many advantages and desirable qualities. Residents share expenses in order to be able to enjoy relatively carefree maintenance of their property and the use of amenities such as pools, fitness centers, meeting rooms, and other appealing

Read More

How to Effectively Represent Condo Association Owners as a Board Member

Condo Association Board members are elected to represent Condo Association Owners and to carry out their fiduciary duty with regards to the Condo Association. That’s the job. There are many other challenges that go with it, but those are the

Read More

The Road to Self-Management: Independence Has Its Pros and Cons

Management by definition is a process; a series of ongoing systems and controls put in place with a specific outcome in mind. The management needs and requirements of HOAs, co-ops and condominiums have helped define the overall property management industry.

Read More

If Hillary and Donald were running for your Condo or HOA Board which one would get your vote?

I realize that the title of this blog post will prompt some readers to dash off a response in support of their favored candidate or at least launch an attack against the candidate they despise.  The question in the title

Read More

Why the ‘Business Judgment Rule’ is not a free pass

Association directors are unpaid, serving their neighbors as volunteers – is it fair that they can be sued for the decisions they make?  The Business Judgment Rule (“BJR” for brevity) is the first thing all directors should learn, but well-meaning

Read More

Finding your Specialty on a Condo Association Board

Once you join a Condo Association Board, you’ll have your hands full with a variety of different tasks and activities. Preserving the big three – finances, safety, and transparency – is the job of all Board members. The challenges of

Read More

Fighting Apathy: New Members on Condo Association Boards

The goal of every Association is to provide a safe, secure, and financially solvent community for its Owners. The vast majority of Associations succeed in this endeavor. This makes it all the more disappointing when Boards break bad and you

Read More

HOAs: The Business Judgment Rule protects boards but is not a free pass

Courts normally defer to HOA boards as long as the Business Judgment Rule is followed. The State Supreme Court said so in 1999, while deciding Lambden v. La Jolla Shores. In the Lambden case, a homeowner contended the board should

Read More

Protection for volunteers: Remember the business judgment rule

Association directors are unpaid, serving their neighbors as volunteers – is it fair that they can be sued for the decisions they make? The Business Judgment Rule (“BJR” for brevity) is the first thing all directors should learn, but well-meaning

Read More

Boosting Harmony Amongst Board Members

Whenever you have a group of people with different beliefs and backgrounds, you’re going to get arguments. However, as with any group, it’s important to create a harmonious environment to actually accomplish tasks. Check out these three tips you can

Read More

Risky Business: Discussing Association Matters in Emails

As well-known especially by those with teenagers, email has taken the place of ordinary telephone conversations and in-person communications. Unlike most telephone conversations and in-person communications, however, email communications are not ephemera. Rather, they live on in back-up tapes or

Read More

Five Personalities at Condo Association Meetings

Monthly Condo Association meetings are critical for the operations and maintenance of an Association. This is where the vast majority of real work gets done. Involved Owners show up to see the sausage made, or at least read the minutes.

Read More

HOA Sales Transactions Can Be Precarious – There Are Many “Sharks” in the Water

HOA sales transactions can be precarious when the parties that are doing the talking do not know what they’re talking about. I did a blog about a month ago with a “beware slant” telling you about why if you are

Read More

For the People, By the Homeowners: HOA Board Governance in a Nutshell

Community associations have a lot in common with municipal governments. As members of a governing body — and typically also members of the homeowner’s association — HOA board members should meet regularly to discuss and vote on important community issues,

Read More

4 Tips to Improve HOA Board Harmony

A productive HOA is a harmonious HOA. If people are arguing and ignoring each other, work can’t get done. If your board is lacking in harmony, check out these four tips to improve peace amongst members.  The most important thing

Read More

New Condo Board: Transition is Important

Question: I have just been elected President of our new condominium. Our new board of directors have just taken over from the developer, but frankly we are at a loss at to where and how to go. Any suggestions? Harry,

Read More

Six Essential Tips for New HOA Board Members

Congratulations are in order – you’ve just been elected to the board. So now the big question: What’s next?  “The great thing about associations that are helmed by owners is that they have a vested interest in doing right by

Read More

Important Things to Know When Serving on a Board of Directors (FL)

Serving on the Board of Directors of any corporation can be a great opportunity for both personal and financial growth. As with everything in life, however, in order to receive, one must also give. This article will summarize the responsibilities

Read More

How to Handle Aggression Against HOA Board Members

Ideally, all HOA board meetings would be organized, calm, and simple. However, that’s not usually how life works when you manage a homeowners association. With many homeowners comes many opinions, and there is usually one owner who believes their opinion

Read More

Just named a director on your new condo board? Better get busy

I have just been elected president of our new condominium. Our new board of directors has just taken over from the developer, but frankly we are at a loss as to where and how to go. Any suggestions?     Read

Read More

The Business Judgment Rule

Community Association board members frequently ask, “What is the standard we’re held to when we vote and make decisions?” The standard of conduct in Oregon and Washington is colloquially known as the “Business Judgment Rule.” Application of the Business Judgment

Read More

HOAs Gone Haywire, Part II: How To Avoid The Most Common Pitfalls Of HOA And COA Management

With 66 million Americans and climbing currently living in common interest communities such as Homeowners’ Associations, Condominium Associations, retirement communities, vacation timeshares, and gated subdivisions, both the benefits — enhanced control over their environment and property values — and the

Read More

When the Inmates Take Over the Asylum and a Good Board Loses Control

Those of us who have been involved in representing community associations (in my case, for over forty-five years) have, no doubt, experienced a situation where so-called dissidents in a community association, for clearly irrational reasons, strive to seize control of

Read More

HOA Generationalizing

Homeowner associations can be a melting pot of age groups which carry unique values and perceptions of the world. At times, these values can clash at the HOA level and the board is challenged to restore balance and harmony with

Read More

When a Board Breaks Bad: Righting the Ship at Your Co-op or Condo

Owners and shareholders trust their elected boards with their very lives. Okay… it’s probably not a life-or-death scenario, but residents of co-ops and condos do put a great deal of faith in their association’s representatives to have their best interests

Read More

Overreaction in a Condo Association

One of my favorite sayings about Condo Associations is “the emotions are so high because the stakes are so low.” Now that’s not to say that serious things can’t happen. Sometimes you’re dealing with major projects or special assessments that

Read More

Are Non-resident HOA Directors Bad For The Community?

“Hello, I live in a condo complex with 69 units. I am on the board with eight other people. Three of our board members do not live in our complex. They own a unit and rent out their units. What

Read More

Business Judgment Rules does not Apply to Unauthorized Acts

The South Carolina Supreme Court held that association board decisions must be evaluated individually to see if the business judgment rule applied, and the business judgment rule did not apply when the board acted beyond its authority. Although this case

Read More

What to Expect as a New Board Member in a Condo Association

Joining your Condo Board is the ultimate leap you can make in terms of your participation in your Condo Association. Far beyond being an involved Owner or a committee member, joining the Board involves a new level of dedication, thick

Read More

How To Recognize Volunteer HOA Board Burn-Out

It would be hard to overstate the importance of volunteerism: it’s quite simply how a lot of work gets done, from large, national programs to smaller and more localized organizations. According to the National Corporation for National and Community Service

Read More

The Power of Ongoing Education for HOA Board Members

As a volunteer board member on your community’s homeowners association, you are not expected to understand the complicated logistical and legal details that govern the community. However, the more you know about the ins and outs of property management, the

Read More

So You Want to be a Board Member – Now What?

I wish someone had told me the nuances of trying to cultivate a community while also trying to manage a business,” said Pat Burke, the current president of the Fieldstondale co-op in the Riverdale section of the Bronx, when asked

Read More

How to Have Efficient Condo Association Board Discussions

Having efficient Condo Association Board discussions is the goal of every sane individual. One great way to speed up meetings and cut through wasted time is my ultimate secret. However, there are more ways to trim the fat of Board

Read More

Techniques for Assessing Condo Association Owner Opinions

As a Condo Association Board, you are elected to represent the views and interests of the Owners of your Association, while also upholding your fiduciary duty. Your Association’s hot topics may be much less dramatic than those in current politics,

Read More

Creating Harmony on Your HOA Board

Part of the fun and reward of serving on the board of your homeowners association is getting the opportunity to listen to the many perspectives of other board members before reaching a decision that will best serve your community.  In

Read More

Three Bad Habits of a Reactive Condo Association

One of the worst habits of a bad Association is that they are completely reactive, not proactive. Instead of proactively getting a handle on their Association, they wait for problems to crop up. This approach often results in higher costs,

Read More