Disaster & Long Range Planning

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Flood insurance: Condos and the rising tide (VA)

Perhaps you’ve noticed homes in Norfolk’s Larchmont neighborhood jacked up several feet to escape flooding, or you’ve seen chilling news photos of single-family houses or townhouses surrounded by floodwater.  Sights like these may give the impression that single-family homes, whether

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Why Your Community Must Plan for Emergency Communication and Training

Whether you live in a high-rise condominium in Chicago, a homeowners association (HOA) in Houston or an active adult community in Las Vegas, emergencies can happen. Do you think your residents would know where to go or whom to contact

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Pre-Planning for an HOA Disaster Response: Roles and Responsibilities

Disaster planning is critical for anyone–but it’s doubly significant for HOAs and others in positions of authority. If a natural disaster strikes in your area, are you prepared to respond? Knowing the roles and responsibilities your HOA has in times

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WeHo City Council Gives Condo Owners a Pass on Earthquake Safety (CA

Faced with dozens of letters in opposition and a crowd carrying signs saying “voluntary,” the West Hollywood City Council last night quickly yielded to owners of condominiums who demanded it not require them to protect their buildings against earthquakes.  The

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Monsoon Season Madness – Be Prepared!

“We can’t do anything to prevent the monsoon, but we can prepare.” Weldon B. Johnson, The Republic | azcentral.com With summertime comes monsoon season, you never know when a big dust storm or heavy torrential downpour may hit! Is your

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Insurance Reminders for Condo Associations at Start of Hurricane Season (FL)

With hurricane season now underway, Florida condominium associations should take the time to ensure that they and their owners are prepared for a storm. In addition to ensuring that hurricane shutters are operational and all of the necessary supplies are

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Why a HOA Strategic Plan is Key to Your Homeowners Association

Your HOA’s strategic plan is a high-level planning tool and document designed to capture your organization’s values and goals while providing direction and motivation to your members. Ideally, the HOA board drafts the strategic plan through a progressive series of

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Be Prepared for Florida’s 2017 Hurricane Season

Florida hurricane season is underway and residents of the Sunshine State may be in for more storms than usual. State officials are warning Floridians to be prepared, noting that Tropical Storm Arlene’s April appearance may be a harbinger.  According to

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Prepare Your Landscape For The Upcoming Summer and Hurricane Season

With summer ahead, it’s time to prepare for the heat, storms and humidity that occur in south Florida. It is time to prepare for the hurricane season. It is important that along with your personal and home safety, you also

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Condo owners ready for flood, thanks to plan

In the middle of a large evacuation alert area, in which residents are busy sandbagging and draining basements of rising groundwater, one building’s name seems particularly apt given current events.  The Water’s Edge.  “It’s a perfect name,” George Mapson, president

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Strategy – Your condo can do better

Annual revenue approaching $1 million, market valuation of $50 – $60 million, 4-6 full or part-time staff members, a management team and a board of directors. It’s a typical 100 unit condo in a Canadian urban area, but you can

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When a Natural Disaster Strikes, Is Your Association Covered?

Hurricanes. Floods. Tornadoes. Hail. Wildfires. Lightning strikes. Earthquakes. Blizzards. Mother Nature has quite the arsenal to throw at us! Unfortunately, every part of North America is subject to one or more of these events. Some, like hurricanes, come with enough

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Power Outages and Blackouts – How Your Association Can Minimize Risk

Losing power is never fun. But it’s bound to happen at some point, so preparation is the best defense. Obviously, different types of communities are affected by blackouts in different critical ways: high-rises lose their elevators and water; resort-style gated

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Hurricane Plans and Policies: Reduce Your Association’s Risk

The Atlantic hurricane season begins each year on June 1 and runs through November 30. This is the time when the eastern coastal United States may witness Mother Nature’s wrath through furious ocean-born storms that for some reason are given

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Disaster Planning: Before, During, and After

If you’ve read the headlines, you know the risks are real. From wildfires to raging floods, and corporate fraud to cyber attacks, there any number of ways disasters can take an organization offline. Recognizing these risks is important, but for

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Disaster Safety for People with Disabilities: What to Do When Emergency Weather Strikes

We all like to believe that when a major hurricane is headed our way or a tornado warning is issued, we’ll know exactly what to do. But inclement weather is unpredictable, and it can be frightening and chaotic to handle

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Reaching Others When Disasters Strike

The first thing many of us do during or immediately following a natural disaster is to call family and friends. Unfortunately, in the minutes and hours after a disaster, overloaded cell phone networks can make it difficult—if not impossible—to reach

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Onion Creek residents search for flood risk solutions as Austin continues feasibility study (TX)

As the city conducts a feasibility study determining how to best mitigate flood risk in the Onion Creek area of South Austin, grassroots efforts continue to curb the loss of life and property.  Ken Jacob, vice president of the Onion

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Tips to Stay Safe When Lightning Strikes Your Homeowners Association

Winter and Spring weather usually means staying in and snuggling by the fire, but it can also bring severe weather. Threatening thunderstorms often loom large in Northern California so it’s important to be prepared for downpours and accompanying lightning, which

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When your homeowner association needs intensive care

Q. Long story short, the members have all been reluctant to get involved on our board for many years. They are all fine with someone else doing it. Our vice president resigned and then appointed herself “manager.” She paid herself

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Disaster Preparedness

With more than 68 million Americans living homes governed by community associations, emergency planning has become an essential skill of HOA managers. Community managers play a key role in any emergency response effort. HOA managers must understand what types of

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Long-Term Planning for Associations

Long-term planning is one of the most valuable tools for managing community associations. A good plan will establish goals that need to be set for the association and methods of monitoring those goals through the timeframe of the project. For

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South Florida Contents Restoration

Every single day, a natural disaster or other catastrophic event occurs somewhere in America, crippling businesses and homeowners alike. Floods and broken water pipes can wreak havoc to floors, walls, ceilings, carpeting, and to all items within affected rooms. Fires

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HOAs and Storm Prep

In many parts of the country, the temperatures have already settled into the 30s and 40s, and residents of those areas know that snow, ice, and wind are right around the corner. Even during mild winters, storms can wreak havoc

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Emergency Preparation: Planning for Worst-Case Scenarios

Some days it rains, some days it pours—and some days, there’s a Category 4 hurricane. And while the latter is relatively rare, it can be a true disaster, and any condominium, co-op or homeowner’s association worth its salt should be

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A first-hand account of the possible tornado that ripped through Charlotte (NC)

About 6:30 p.m., my family and I left our home in Ayrsley to go out to dinner. We were about a quarter mile south of Westinghouse on South Tryon Street when traffic came to a halt. As we slowed, both

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Intracoastal West community keeps power, avoids severe damage (FL)

Indian Springs was a small island that never lost power — while outages occurred all around it — largely due to having underground utility lines. Power flickered on and off several times but the worst nuisance for the residents was

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How to Prepare and Respond to a Flood in Your High-Rise Building

A flood – one of the most common natural disasters – can also be the most detrimental for high-rise buildings. The nature of these buildings makes them particularly vulnerable to flooding caused by severe storms.  “Vulnerability doesn’t have to equate

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EMERGENCY POWERS: What Condominium and Homeowners Association Board Members Need to Know (FL)

The windows are shuttered, patio and pool furniture is stored away, the pantry is stocked with food, water bottles and gas tanks are filled, flashlights have new batteries, and insurance policies and other important papers are in a safe place.

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HOA Management: Creating a Strategic Plan for Your Community

A strategic plan is a valuable resource, especially for large or aging communities. In this article, we will outline exactly what defines a strategic plan and how it can help guide your homeowners association property management decisions.   Read the article………….

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When Tragedy Affects Your Building – Picking Up the Pieces at Your Co-op or Condo

According to a story in the New York Daily News on August 18, a construction worker died after apparently hanging himself from a fifth-floor window at a Queens condominium complex. By any estimation, this event was tragic, and surely devastating

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What to Do After a Natural Disaster in Your Homeowners Association

If your homeowners association property has been damaged in a natural disaster—hurricane, tornado, flood, earthquake or fire there are some important steps you can take in the immediate aftermath to ensure your safety and minimize financial loss. Consider the following

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How to Set Up Emergency Plans in Your HOA Community

No one really wants to think about emergency situations and their consequences. Unfortunately, bad things, including natural disasters like tornadoes or severe thunderstorms, happen when we least expect them. So your board should always have an emergency plan in place

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Tips to Prepare a Family Emergency Plan in Your Homeowners Association

Natural disasters affect thousands of people every year, and with the increased risk of severe thunderstorms, flash flooding and tornadoes these days, it’s a good idea to think about having an emergency plan in place. Consider preparing an emergency plan

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Here’s How to Prepare Your Community for Hurricane Season

The goal of hurricane preparedness is to minimize the impact on any association or property during the storm. It’s an ongoing, year-round process to mitigate the potential effects of dangerous debris, impassable roadways, loss of electricity or running water, and

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How to Prevent an “Act of God” from Derailing Your Community.

Ask a contractor or vendor about what will happen to their services and your community in the event of a disaster or emergency and they will likely point you towards a clause in their contract entitled, Force Majeure.    

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It’s Hurricane Season: Is Your Community Association Prepared?

Despite 2016 not being projected as a big year for hurricanes in Florida, we all know that the season is not over yet. This leads to a very important question for community associations: if a hurricane or tropical storm were

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Storms and Your HOA

You were just hit by a big storm, you know there is damage and are grateful everyone is safe; and that you have insurance. But, did you know that you as a homeowner are responsible to prevent additional damage and

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Community Associations: Are You Prepared for this Hurricane Season?

Southwest Florida has been fortunate in the first month of this 2016 hurricane season, but if a hurricane crops up next week, is your association prepared?  Here are a few suggestions for protecting yourselves and your association members this hurricane

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Property Owner Association Strategies For Post-Hurricane And Disaster Events (Part 3)

In my previous two articles, I discussed preparation for catastrophic events and post-event site assessment. There are a few final steps to disaster recovery for associations, though, and those are settling the insurance claim and finalizing the cleanup and repair

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When a Storm Strikes Your HOA: How you respond is critical

You were just hit by a big storm, you know there is damage and are grateful everyone is safe; and that you have insurance. But, did you know that you as a homeowner are responsible to prevent additional damage and

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Hurricane Shutters and Florida Condominiums

Question: I am preparing to return to my northern home for the summer and intend to deploy the hurricane shutters on my condominium unit. However, the association is advising me that I cannot deploy my hurricane shutters unless there is

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Property Owner Association Strategies For Post-Hurricane And Disaster Events (Part 2) (NC)

Does your association have a post-hurricane and disaster event plan in place? As I discussed in my last article, preparation is key for property owner associations when it comes to being ready for catastrophic events. But once the event happens,

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Effective policies for Managing Emergency Situations in a Condo Association

I recently wrote about how important it is to protect the powers of the Condo Board. To ensure you run a transparent and open Condo Association, you must protect your Board powers. But the reality is that life is messy.

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Property Owner Association Strategies For Hurricane And Disaster Preparation (Part 1)

Is your association ready for a disaster or catastrophic event? A plan is critical year-round, but for the Cape Fear region, it is particularly important to be prepared for hurricanes and floods.  Read the article…………

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Hurricane Preparedness for Your Community Association

The dreaded hurricane season is here. June 1 marks the beginning of the season, which goes until November 30.  Does your community have a plan? If not, now is the time to create one. Knowing the necessary steps to prepare

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Keep It Moving: How Community Associations Plan for a Successful Future One Year at a Time

Many association boards have no real vision for their community or any goals that they are working toward. Essentially, they operate in a month-to-month mentality, addressing issues as they arise and focusing on homeowners and property values. Although that’s understandable,

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Extreme Weather Patterns On The Rise

Safeguarding the structural integrity of buildings of all sizes and purposes will be a crucial endeavor for all industries and sectors in the coming years. As extreme weather conditions continue to increase, so too does the risk of damage to

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Does Your HOA Have a Strategic Plan?

The strategic plan for a homeowners association should act as an outline for the immediate future of projects and priorities, as well as an overview of the year’s budget and what future budgets might include. Regularly reviewing and updating your

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