The differences in on-site community management vary as greatly as the number of communities in the U.S. Most manager training consists of the fundamental community association management, but one of the greatest challenges a manager faces is when they move between states. Due to varying state laws, management approaches can vary significantly.
State legal requirements are perhaps the most noticeable regional difference – because state requirements can vary, it is the best practice that the community manager first familiarizes themselves with the laws of the state that the association resides, along with the association’s governing documents. One state may allow closed board meetings, while many others require that all meetings be open to the owners. The collection of assessments is a priority for most associations, as they are the lifeblood of the community. Therefore, collection policies must comply with respective state laws and carefully follow and allow legal recourse for non-payment if needed. Several states require licensing, certification and standards.
Each region presents its challenges when it comes to maintenance. For instance, areas that get snow need to plan for removal along with repairs for damages caused by salt solutions and plowing equipment. In other areas, hail damage is an annual concern, and a plan must be in place for assessing it promptly, while wind and rain damage is a concern for hurricane and tornado regions. Disaster response is an essential ingredient of managing large onsite managed communities. A community that is not prepared is not going to recover as quickly as another that has a disaster plan in place.
Planning is critical in managing associations in every region. A community calendar is helpful for charting out the maintenance needs for seasonal challenges and making sure that the association has the right insurance policies in place with adequate coverage. It is important to budget for preventative measures, repairs not covered by the reserve fund or insurance, or for the insurance deductible when necessary.
Ever geographic area requires a different management style, so when you select a manager or management company, choose them knowing that their knowledge in helping the association navigate the various regional aspects of the community is key to the long-term success of the association and the community at large.
Contact the experienced homewoners association association lawyers at Stevens & Goldwyn for a free consultation. Stevens & Goldwyn specializes in community association law, real estate litigation, as well as civil & commercial litigation in Fort Lauderdale.
Through a free, no-obligation consultation, you can discuss your legal concerns with a partner of our firm. We look forward to answering your questions and seeing how we can meet your legal needs.
Call 954-476-2680 or contact us online today.