Do you care about your neighborhood to run for the highest position on the board? Caring for an entire community is challenging, but if you think you have what it takes to become an HOA president, then this guide is for you!
Most communities in the US have a board committee that works to make each neighborhood better. A study found that some 300,000 community associations are registered across the nation. That includes one of your community.
You can always try a starter role in your local board committee, but if you have a vision and you want to turn your neighborhood into a model community, being a general board member just won’t do. You need more authority and take on more responsibilities to mold the community as you see fit — be the President of the homeowners association! Hey, if you think you’re perfect for the role, then why not shoot for the stars?
But before diving headfirst into the role, you need to learn all the duties and responsibilities that come with the job!
How Does a Homeowners Association Function?
A Homeowners Association (HOA) comprises a board of directors, and every member was elected to enforce community rules and regulations. The rules and guidelines are outlined in a document called “Declaration of Covenants, Conditions, and Restrictions,” or CC&Rs. These regulations include restrictions about the look of each home, such as:
- Types of fences to use
- Landscaping styles
- Paint color of a house
Yes, the regulations can be quite stifling for some and are surprisingly specific but, these exist to maintain the highest standard of living in your community and, of course, to make your neighborhood look spectacular.
Also, the CC&R document outlines all the penalties for violating the rules. Homeowners who defy the rules may pay fines, and certain cases could even lead to litigation. Demanding penalties seem harsh, but there’s no way that the association could enforce the rules without these. Also, the money could be used to fund the community’s many needs, like a third-party professional management team, to keep the neighborhood pristine!
Qualities Of a Good Homeowner Association President
Not everyone has the skills needed to hold office as an HOA president. Here are some of the qualities a homeowner association president should exemplify.
Hunger for Learning
A good HOA president should have the willingness to learn new things. He shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help from other people! Part of the job includes understanding the many state and local laws that affect the community. The HOA president should learn all about these laws, including the limits of his authority.
How well can you handle disputes between community members? As the HOA president, you should have excellent mediation skills because issues between residents happen all the time, and it’s your job to sort these out. Some of the disputes could turn ugly but you’re there to smooth things over.
Apart from handling disputes between community members, you should know how to solve disagreements between you and other residents in a calm, objective, and professional way.
Time Management Skills
As the HOA president, you have a lot on your plate. Expect to juggle different tasks because you’ll wear many hats. Yes, you’ll have board members helping you out, but you need to know which tasks to prioritize to maintain a peaceful and fabulous-looking neighborhood. And if an urgent issue falls on your lap, you need to know how to resolve it without messing with the rest of the tasks you have on your schedule. Having excellent time management skills is vital in keeping the entire community running smoothly.
Excellent Communication Skills
As the HOA president, you represent your entire community. As the head of your community, you should be comfortable speaking on behalf of the association among residents, management companies, and other service providers. You’ll deal with different people from the press, local governments, and other associations, so you should learn how to convey messages well to nurture relationships and avoid potential issues.
Love For the Neighborhood
Of course, you need to love your neighborhood enough to run for the top position. Let’s be real; being the HOA president is not a walk in the park at all. Residents will come to you every time an issue crops up. You are expected to sort out disputes, handle critical maintenance tasks, enforce HOA rules, and represent your neighborhood outside the community. It’s a tough job.
Maintaining an entire neighborhood can be a thankless job, but it’s a labor of love. If you love your community and you know that you have the dedication to maintain the highest living standards, then you deserve to be the HOA president!
Duties To Expect For a President Of a Homeowners Association
Now that you know all the characteristics that make a great HOA president, let’s talk about the responsibilities that come with the job.
Sign Important Association Documents
Get your pen ready once you become the president of your HOA because you’ll sign many documents. All the documents that have anything to do with community projects, you’ll sign with your name. You represent the neighborhood now, so you’ll honor these commitments on behalf of the community.
Serve As the Main Point Of Contact for Contracted Companies
From third-party management companies to contracted companies, you will serve as the person to call for all service providers. Most of these companies will even give their mobile number to you for emergencies and vice versa.
Schedule, Attend, and Run Board Meetings
Prepare to attend and manage board meetings to discuss all the important issues related to maintaining and improving your community. You’re the HOA president, which means it’s your job to schedule these meetings. You’ll need to attend these meetings in person and make sure to address all the community’s pressing issues.
Creating Meeting Agendas
… and speaking of meetings, you’ll be the one to plan the meeting agenda. Just to be sure you won’t forget any of the issues that the board would tackle, keep a list. Remember, a good leader should have excellent planning skills; otherwise, issues could simply be forgotten during the meetings, which could wreak havoc on the community.
Call For Community-Wide Votes and Announce Results
There are times when you have to round up all the residents and call for community-wide votes on certain issues. You have to be comfortable calling people up for a community vote, discussing what the issue is all about, and then announcing the vote results.
Appoint Special Committees
As the president of HOA, you have the authority to appoint a special committee for important projects. For instance, you can organize a community movement and let the special committee handle the event. You can nominate any people you choose as long as they can get the job done — even those who are not active board members.
Community Is About Doing Something Together That Makes a Difference
The most important part of this job is to love and care for the community. Think of the entire neighborhood as a big family, and you, you’re the head of the family. The best kind of HOA president is one that could care for the community the same way s/he cares for his or her family.
Yep, being an HOA president means having a whole laundry list of duties and responsibilities. It’s daunting, no doubt, but remember — the board members have your back! You’ll have plenty of people who’ll help you out, so don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. Again, it’s a tough job, and it literally takes a village to keep an entire neighborhood running smoothly!
Found this article helpful? We hope that you learned all about the responsibilities of the president of a homeowners association. For questions about this article, contact us! Looking for community management services in California? We can help you out! Request a proposal here to get started!