What’s the State of the Union for your Community Association?

CPAHOA - State of the Association

What’s the State of the Union for your Community Association?

Recently, the President delivered the State of the Union address to our nation, giving us his perspective on where things are in our country. Regardless of your view of his address, the idea of leadership providing constituents a status of where things are, what was done last year, and what is to come next year is a good thing. These principles can apply to community associations as well. How about your Association; do you provide a State of the Union? The following are a few things to consider and some of the reasons why it might be a good idea to provide a State of the Union to the homeowners.

Education, Transparency and Good Communication

For many current homeowners, community living is a first for them. They are unaware about the activities of the Association and all the work the Board has been doing. They know what their monthly assessment amount is when they close on their unit, but may not understand why it may continue to increase each year.

An overview of the Association’s activities and related financial implications helps fill in and replace the vacuum that a lack of information creates. Among ongoing communication strategies such as newsletters, available board minutes and clubhouse postings, A State of the Union address may help mitigate potential homeowner vs. Board issues that can arise due to perceived lack of transparency.

A good time to deliver this address may be at the Annual meeting where you provide an overview of the major projects that were completed last year and the project plans and costs for the upcoming year. An effective presentation will connect the dots of where we have been, where we are today with operations and reserves, and what is the vision for next year. In addition, this can also be helpful for management to support and communicate all their efforts on behalf of the Association.

As always, it would be wise to run any communication presentation through your professional counsel to make sure that the communication points are appropriate and clear.

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