Departments

Was the Manager Liable for an Owner’s Stabbing?

Violence is an unfortunate reality, and community associations and their managers need to prepare for the possibility of an owner falling victim and then seeking recompense from them. Preparation doesn’t necessarily require formal security precautions, though. Associations may be able to limit liability for themselves and their managers in their declarations. That’s what happened in…

Assessing the Need for Assistance Animals: The Latest Federal Guidance

Making the call on an owner’s request for a reasonable accommodation for an assistance dog under the Fair Housing Act (FHA) has grown increasingly difficult for many community association boards of directors, especially in the absence of up-to-date rules or guidelines from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). But now HUD has…

E-voting: Yay or Nay?

Not every state permits e-voting in community associations, and, even in those that do, many associations were slow to embrace it. But some communities are taking a second look, recognizing the numerous advantages. Your clients that are considering adopting the practice also need to consider the potential downsides, as well as what’s involved in implementing…

Should Your Clients Allow — or Build Their Own — Electric Vehicle Charging Stations?

We’re still far off from the flying cars promised by The Jetsons, but electric cars are a reality and, slowly but surely, gaining popularity. That’s particularly true among the next big generation of community association owners — Millennials. “According to Bloomberg New Energy Finance, 54 percent of all new car sales will be electric by…

Money Matters: Maintaining Your Clients’ Financial Health During — and After — the Coronavirus

The cororonavirus crisis has shaken the foundations of the economy, and savvy community association boards are already thinking about the implications for their financial footing going forward. In particular, many boards can expect to deal with owners struggling to pay their assessments. While compassion certainly is warranted, boards may find their hands more tied than…

Call to Order: Meetings in a Public Health Emergency

Meetings, whether of the board or the association membership, are a hallmark of community associations. And, like so many other aspects of association operations, they’re subject to a lot of rules — rules that have many communities scrambling amidst the sweeping coronavirus crisis. Social distancing protocols and prohibitions against gatherings make traditional meetings nearly impossible…

Tread Carefully When Infection Comes to the Community

There’s nothing like a public health crisis created by highly contagious virus to get people riled up. And when people live in close communities, they may be especially vulnerable — to both illness and alarm. The calls about the coronavirus started coming earlier and earlier, says Sandra Gottlieb, a founding partner of California homeowner association…

Smart Common Area Management in a Time of Contagion

As the coronavirus pandemic heated up this spring, community association managers dealt with an onslaught of calls from clients. People were feeling out of control and ramping up their expectations for protective measures from their associations. One particular area of focus? The risk of contagion in common areas. Managers and boards of directors owe a…

“We Don’t Want Any”: Rules and Restrictions for Nonresidents in a Public Health Emergency

In early April 2020, a Manhattan co-op prohibited the brother of one of the building’s owners from staying in his unit. According to the New York Times, the brother, a physician, had traveled to the city from rural New Hampshire to volunteer his services in the battle against the coronavirus. This incident may have struck…

Walk on the Wild Side: Managing Owner-and-Wildlife Interactions

Homeowners with an affinity for animals often pose problems for community associations and their managers. But it’s one thing when you’re dealing with domesticated pets — it’s another when the owners want to interact with area wildlife. As the president of a Florida gated golf community recently told the Panama City News Herald, “[i]f someone…