Continued from last issue…
Preserving your community's resources makes sense, if your community has sufficient competent volunteers to do what a management company should do. Be it your manager or the board, the objective of management is to preserve or increase the property values of your homes. For that to make sense, consider the level of competency that management requires. The challenge of managing an association has little to do with a community's size. The challenges to the management of any community have to do with the complexity of that community's assets and their administration.
Take a community whose sole assets are entry signage and entry landscaping. This is a simple community that anyone could manage if they have enough common sense to take good care of their home and yard. Add entry lighting, irrigation, and decorative boundary walls to the mix, and the required level of competency increases. A small park with a bit of playground equipment increases the association's liability and exposure considerably. Did you know that there are companies whose primary business is the inspection of playgrounds? These inspectors carry the designation of Certified Playground Safety Inspector (CPSI).
The addition of a swimming pool or a clubhouse, a street with crumbling asphalt, and several owners that require liens, and foreclosures increases the required competency of volunteers again. The point to take from this is that sufficient competency is always required of association volunteers. However, in the more complex examples above, i.e. playground equipment, road and asphalt remediation, and collection issues, volunteer competency is not enough; the services of professionals are called for. The question you need to ask is are we qualified in those professions to adequately meet the neds of the task at hand.
The greatest disservice a self-managed board can do to their association is to rely upon their inexperience and lack of professional judgment when they should be calling upon an expert. If I had half of the money wasted by boards without the sense to call in an expert, I could have retired comfortably ten years ago.
And this happens because…? Boards want to save their association money.
With technology, there are respectable ways to save your association money without breaking the bank and creating financial waste. Furthermore, with technology a board can decrease their legal exposure, personal exposure, and limit the liability of the association. Did you catch the word ‘personal’ in the last sentence? Exposure of one’s personal assets exists when they do not use the prudent judgment in managing the resources of othersTo . Manthe management services required, one must keep in mind the adage, 'don't be penny wise and dollar-foolish.'
Since management fees are a material line item in the budget, The greatest saving I now is a good time to deal with It is in part from your feedback that this article will address technology. Protecting and saving your personal time is the one major benefits of technology.