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Six Ways to Keep Your HOA Community Looking Good

An HOA is a non-profit entity with the purpose of protecting, maintaining, enhancing, or preserving the common property of the development. As we’re all well aware, a home is a substantial investment. How can you help keep your community looking

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Rainwater Collection Systems Policies in Your Homeowners Association

Some states like Texas prohibit HOA communities from banning rainwater collection systems, as the benefits of these systems are tremendous. However, if you are considering when outlining your HOA rainwater collection policy.   Read the article………….

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Know your Duty as HOA Treasurer: 6 helpful tips

Your HOA board is responsible for many important decisions, but one of the most important responsibilities is maintaining the financial health of the association. Although each board member needs to participate in sound financial decision-making, no one is more responsible

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Dealing with Squatters

While the term “squatter” may make you think of crumbling buildings and homelessness, it can be a very real problem for well-kept and well-managed communities. Since dealing with squatters can be difficult, knowing the telltale signs and how to properly

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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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Pokémon Chasing: Coming Soon to an HOA Near You

This gaming craze has created stories and news all over the U.S. It’s even impacting HOA’s and homeowner association management companies. Homeowners are calling in concerned about the activity they are seeing go on in the community. After further research

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HOA Board Members Can Be Sued

“You’ve been served” is a phrase no one ever wants to hear. While lawsuits against board members are usually unsuccessful, it’s still important to protect yourself and your board from the threat. Since we hate legal speak as much as

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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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American Flags In Your HOA: Let the Stars and Stripes Fly Free

With the Fourth of July right around the corner, more and more homeowners will hang their American flag, and while you may be tempted to micromanage their flag flying freedoms, don’t. Instead, recognize that as Americans, their right to fly

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Coping with Change in your HOA

Change can be tough, and while it makes some people nervous, it also provides HOAs with the opportunity to improve their community. So, to help you manage change in a positive way, we thought we’d share a few helpful tips

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Becoming a Landlord in an HOA Community

Having a rental property can be a great way to add some supplementary income to your pocketbook. When that rental property is in a community with an HOA, it offers a lot of advantages for both you and your tenants,

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HOA & Xeriscaping

When you hear the word “xeriscaping,” does it evoke images in your mind of endless gravel, rocks, and cacti? Well, if you’re like most people, this is probably how you tend to view xeriscaping and it may seem less-than-appealing to

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7 Mistakes New HOA Board Members Should Avoid

Congrats, you’re the newest HOA board member in your community! Chances are if you made the move to get elected to the board, there was a reason why you wanted to get involved in your community—whether there were specific changes

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Security Cameras and HOA Policy – Prepare before assuming the role as big brother

Security cameras in your HOA can be a handy security tool, but if they’re not managed properly, they can end up being more of a headache (and a liability). Before your HOA installs them, make sure your board drafts a

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Defalcation and the Hazards of Board Membership – Lessons from the Fifth Circuit (TX)

Do you serve on your condominium’s board as a fun way to meet your neighbors and test out your governance skills? What seems like a low-commitment diversion can balloon into a stressful time suck – or worse. You may be

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HOA Security: How Safe is Your Community?

Safe neighborhoods are desirable, a safe AND desirable community is what every HOA strives to accomplish and maintain. While everyone knows living in a safe community is important, it isn’t always as easy to know how to make and keep

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Fiduciary Duty and What it Means for Your HOA Board

Just try saying that five times fast. Not only is it a serious mouthful, it also carries serious legal obligations and potential consequences. As board members, your community has entrusted you with the “power” to make decisions on their behalf

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How to meet quorum at Annual HOA meetings

Meeting HOA annual meeting quorum requirements can be difficult at times. What is a quorum? It is the minimum number of required owners to be present at an annual meeting to make it official. If the association does meet quorum,

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Google+ Hangout the future of HOA Board meetings?

Anyone that has ever lived in a HOA or Condo Association community knows that the feeling of being persuaded by a neighbor to volunteer for the board of directors for their community. Most people are scared to death to add

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Five Symptoms of Chronic HOA Board Fatigue

Most management companies claim to perform the “same tasks,” but the approach they take and whether or not they actually perform those functions are another question. Every day we get phone calls and emails from HOA board members who are

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Fireplace Safety in Your Home and HOA Community

For many, the essence of winter is curling up next to the warmth of a crackling fireplace while enjoying the sights of the snow-dusted scenery outside. Unless of course you live in a Arizona or Texas, in which case it’s

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Volunteer Labor in your HOA: Worth the Risk?

HOA Board members face a lot of decisions when it comes to finances. Usually those decisions involve trying to figure out how to be as responsible as possible to keep the HOA budgets in good shape. Sometimes, Boards will have

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Noise in your HOA Community

3 Steps for community peace; we’ll tackle world peace next time.     Noisy neighbors… Almost everyone will have to deal with them at some point in their adult life, whether they live in a single family home, condo, or apartment.

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New Year, New HOA Goals: 10 Ideas to Make 2016 Better

If you haven’t decided on any 2016 goals for your HOA board yet, it’s not too late! To give you a head start, we’ve compiled a list of several goals that we think could help almost every HOA board improve

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How to Read and Understand HOA Documents

As a potential buyer in a HOA community, it’s important that you know what rules you’re signing up to follow for before you actually sign on the dotted line. Unfortunately, too many potential buyers shy away from fully reviewing HOA

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Your Homeowner’s Association (HOA) and the role it plays

In many communities one of the fees a homeowner is expected to pay is an HOA fee. The amount of the fee varies greatly and most people don’t really understand why they need to pay it. The role of your

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HOA Board Members:Creative strategies for reducing HOA costs

As all good HOA board members do, they are always looking to help improve the financial situation of their HOA community. Everyone’s first reaction is always to look at the management costs or service provider (landscaper, pool servicing company,etc) and

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What to Do If You Have to Levy a Special Assessment

In a previous post, we talked about the importance of adequately funding your reserves as an HOA. While it would be ideal for every HOA to have a healthy reserve fund that could cover almost any unexpected cost, that’s not

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Tipping Point: In Huntington Village, the Community Association Has All the Power

Most of the time Ebony Washington is able to pretend everything is fine. She even waves when Huntington Village Community Association deed restriction inspectors pause near her house to record another infraction. Washington puts up a good front throughout the

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The Three R’s of HOAs: Rules and Regulations

When most people hear the term “the three R’s,” they probably think of the phrase “reduce, reuse, recycle” that they learned in grade school. But did you know that there are three R’s that apply to homeowner associations, too? Rules,

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New HOA Laws (TX)

The 84th Texas Legislature enacted several new laws that impact HOA & Condominium Communities. Full text documents of applicable legislation can be found on this website.”    Read the PDF’s………….

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New Hoarding Ordinance in Houston: What this means for you and your Texas HOA

Hoarding—If your Texas HOA hasn’t had to deal with it yet, you’ve probably seen a glimpse of it on some popular reality TV shows. It’s not a problem we’d wish on any community, but considering how rampant of a problem

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How to best use (or not use) your HOA Insurance Policy

While carrying insurance to protect your community is important, it’s also important to use the policy properly. Unlike personal home and auto insurance, the types of claims that an HOA may file can vary greatly and understanding when to file

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HOA Budgeting 101: How to Budget for Your HOA Community

It’s HOA budget season. Everyone talks about needing a budget, but very few people like budgeting. While it takes time, attention to detail, and intense practicality, a detailed budget is essential for any HOA that plans to operate with the

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4 Steps for Managing HOA Board Member Conflicts

No matter how hard you work to avoid conflicts of interests, you’ll likely find yourself encountering one at some point during your time as a HOA board member. A conflict of interest occurs when a board member places their own

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Statutory Civil Damages for Covenant Violations Requires Actual Damages (TX)

In a case of first impression, today the Houston Court of Appeals, 14th District, issued its opinion in KBG Investments, LLC v. Greenspoint Property Owners’ Association, Inc. The court held that in order to recover civil damages under Property Code

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New State (TX) Laws Effective as of September 1st

The 2015 Texas Legislative Session brought new changes to statutes affecting owners associations in a myriad of topics. For the complete text of the new statutes, visit the link at http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/BillLookup/BillNumber.aspx . Below are the highlights:    Read the article…………

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Waging War on HOA Weeds

Why is it that the plants you want to keep green and living always brown and wilt, while the weeds you try to kill flourish and drive you nuts? It’s a problem that plagues every yard, in every community no

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5 HOA Parking Enforcement Tips

Many communities, especially those made up of townhomes and condos, restrict parking curbside. Even though this is a great tactic to keep the community safe and looking nice, it can oftentimes annoy homeowners who don’t see the real reason for

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New Texas statute affecting condominium construction defect claims

Before filing a lawsuit or initiating an arbitration proceeding pertaining to a construction defect, a condominium association in Texas with eight or more units must now comply with the newly added Section 82.119 to Chapter 82 of the Texas Property

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Preventing HOA Paint Problems

Exterior painting can be an expensive and daunting task, especially if many homes in your community are in need of fresh coat. Unfortunately when a community reaches 7-10 years old, most of the homes likely need new paint, and every

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Dog Poop and HOA Compliance

Picture this: you’re walking through your community’s common area with your family, enjoying an early-evening walk when you hear a distinctive “SQUISH”. You’ve just stepped in poop. Gross!  There are very few things that can ruin a nice walk faster

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10 Ways to Be a Better HOA Board Member

Your job as an HOA board member isn’t always smooth sailing. While being on your HOA board is important to you, it’s likely not your only job. The extra time and attention it requires for meetings, decisions, and other duties

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10 Questions To Ask About Roads

Doc may be right that the future holds a paradigm shift in transportation patterns. However for the near future at least, community associations need to concern themselves with roads. Whether in a condominium or subdivision association, it is important to

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Landscaping With Artificial Turf in an HOA Neighborhood

With increasing concerns over drought and water conservation, artificial turf is growing in popularity. If your first thought is “ew,” you’re probably visualizing the scratchy plastic carpet in Aunt Edna’s sunroom or a miniature golf course. You may want to

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6 Tips for HOA Media Crisis Management

If you’ve ever heard the term “any press is good press,” you also probably know that it’s a motto used by most celebrities, politicians, and even corporations in mainstream media today. Even less-than-favorable publicity is considered a bonus for these

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Are Your Retention Ponds Safe During Monsoon Season? (TX)

Proper water drainage is an issue that every HOA needs to address at some point. Whether the drainage system in your neighborhood is working great or could use some improvement, here are some general guidelines to keep in mind for

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Condos: 2015 (Texas) Legislative Update

The 84th Texas Legislature made multiple changes to the laws affecting property owners associations. The majority of the changes impact single family HOAs, but one important change was made to Chapter 82 of the Texas Property Code, or the Texas

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Texas HOA Law – 2015 Legislative Update

On June 1, the Texas Legislature concluded the 2015 legislative session. Unlike the 2013 legislative session, in which the Texas Legislature enacted legislation that was relatively minor in scope, the 2015 Texas Legislature enacted 39 new HOA-specific laws that apply

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Fair Housing Law: U.S. Supreme Court upholds disparate impact claims

Can enforcement of a rule, regulation, practice or procedure that is completely neutral on its face create liability for discrimination? The U.S. Supreme Court said “yes” today in the case of Texas Dep’t of Housing and Community Affairs v. The

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