TOP 10 BOARD RESOLUTIONS FOR THE NEW YEAR!
The New Year is upon us, and now is the perfect time to make certain resolutions regarding how your Board functions.
To that end, here’s a list of the top 10 resolutions your Board can make to help your HOA / Condominium run even more effectively.
- Review and revise your corporate policies – resolutions begin here! Now is a good time to start reviewing your communities existing policies to see if they’re still reasonable and appropriate. You may discover, for example, that your Sales and/or Subletting policies no longer apply to the current market. Or, you may want to change your Alteration Agreement or your policy regarding pets. Resolve to address each policy in turn until all of your corporate policies reflect the tone and quality of life you want to maintain within your community.
- Develop and distribute an updated House Rules Document. As long as you’re reviewing your policies, let your work count twice and simultaneously assemble an updated House Rules document. If such a document already exists, inserting updates and minor revisions can be a relatively simple matter. If this is the first time you’re putting such a document together, consider assigning an ‘ad hoc’ committee to assemble all the information and to present a draft to the Board for approval. In either case, pass the document by your corporate counsel before distributing it to residents. Resolve to make this an outgoing project until it’s done.
- Open the lines of communication between the Board and owners/residents. Even the most well-meaning Boards can get so involved with their day-to-day responsibilities that the promise of more frequent communication with owners and residents falls by the wayside. But among the most frequent criticisms of Boards is that they don’t keep residents informed.
- Develop a five-year plan and projected capital budget. Planning for the future is essential to your property’s long-term success. This year, resolve to do an extensive, basement / slab-to-roof inspection and evaluation of all your building’s structural and mechanical elements, and to develop an accurate, workable five-year plan and long-term projected capital budget. These will be helpful in terms of financial planning and also will provide a roadmap for future Boards to follow.
- Spruce up your property with cosmetic upgrades that increase its ‘curb appeal.’ Does your Clubhouse need new furniture? Have your common hallway carpets seen better days? Is it time to re-paint? Resolve to make inexpensive cosmetic upgrades throughout your community that will enhance its value for both current and prospective residents.
- Evaluate your staff with your Property Manager. If you’ve been putting off staff-related issues, now is a good time to take an objective look with your Property Manager at how your vendors are performing, and to resolve to make change where change is needed.
- Make your meetings run better. Board meetings can be productive sessions or they can be exercises in time-consuming frustration. This year, resolve to institute internal Board policies that help your meetings run better. Establish agendas and stick to them. Don’t let personality issues deflect attention from the matters at hand. Let your Property Manager do his/her job by remembering that it’s the Board’s responsibility to set policies and the Property Management’s job to implement them. In short, resolve to take a more business-like approach to the way your meetings are conducted.
- Be better informed. The issues impacting residential HOA’s and condos are in a constant state of evolution and flux. This year, resolve that your Board, both individually and collectively, will be as informed as possible. Tap into the information-based resources available through your property’s professionals, and take advantage of the many free industry-related seminars and conferences that are offered throughout the year.
- Do what you can to avoid ‘Board burn-out.’ If another year on the Board fills you with dread, you may be experiencing ‘Board burn-out.’ To ensure that your Board operates at maximum effectiveness, resolve this year to delegate more responsibility to committees and to volunteers who have expressed an interest in greater participation. This is also a great way to identify and groom candidates for future Board service.
- Focus on results. The best and most productive Boards make well-informed decisions that have positive results as their end-goal. This year, resolve to do likewise so that you can move forward quickly and confidently in all of your Board activities.
The New Year is a time of new beginnings. If your Board resolves to accomplish even only a few of the suggestions above, you will find yourselves progressing productively, efficiently, and effectively as you go about the business of your property’s governance and operation.
Klein Property Management is a full service property management firm located in central New Jersey. If you are currently reviewing or making changes to better your home owners associations, we have the experience to help you launch into the new year! Contact us any of the following: