Different HOAs have different rules and restrictions. Interestingly, they all experience the same six problems in their community:
1. Pet Problems
Common pet problems include noise, leash law violations, and owners refusing to clean up pet waste. The more pets a community has, typically the more pet problems arise.
Make sure to communicate and enforce pet management policies regularly. Set up signs and send reminders as necessary.
Poor pet waste management poses serious health and sanitary issues. If your community struggles with pet waste management, consider enlisting the service of a third-party company.
2. Parking Problems
Typically, parking spots are reserved for residents. When guest parking issues and service truck parking issues, resident complaints and violations can occur.
The HOA should provide a parking spot exclusively for guests, which all residents should know. There should also be visible and explicit signs and directions to guide guests on where they can and cannot park. Doing so will also help enforce violations.
HOA commonly experiences issues with overnight parking of commercial vehicles. This is common among homeowners who need to park their work trucks or vans when they go home at night.
3. Financial Issues
Homeowners pay significant fees to their HOA. They expect regular and detailed financial reporting that shows where their money is being spent. The board should work towards better communication and transparency.
First and foremost, it is imperative that the HOA board publish and distribute financial reports annually for full transparency.
Keep your financial documents including reports and audits up-to-date and compiled neatly. They should be available upon request. You may also opt to have them available through an online cloud storage like Google Drive or Dropbox.
It is also important to encourage your residents to attend board meetings to discuss financial matters and to entertain their questions.
4. Common Area Maintenance
It is to everyone’s best interest that your community’s property value is maintained at a high level.
As such, there should be regular maintenance and repairs especially in common areas and properties to keep them to a high standard. Otherwise, they will decline over time and the community’s value will lower.
If there are delays and failures in repairs and maintenance, the board should inform the residents in a timely manner.
If regular repairs and maintenance have become difficult due to lack of volunteers, it’s best to outsource it to a third-party company.
5. Resident Favoritism
The HOA board should hold all residents to the same restrictions or rules. A board member shouldn’t come down hard on others, then turn a blind eye to his close friends or neighbors who break the rules.
This becomes more complicated when fines are involved. Some board members try to sneak in new or unlisted rules to push people out. Remember that all new rules and restrictions should be properly communicated and implemented fairly to all residents.
6. Inaction to Complaints
Residents expect the HOA board to mediate and resolve a complaint that they have on a neighbor. When a dispute goes unsettled, what may be a small issue can turn into a big squabble that can disrupt and involve other neighbors.
As HOA board, you have the responsibility to keep the peace and quiet in your community. You should have a clear streamlined process for accepting and addressing complaints at a timely manner.